Last Friday we had one of the biggest Nuffnang events ever. The kind of event that we have only once every 2 years. It was the Nuffnang Asia-Pacific Blog Awards 2011. The Awards is meant to be the Oscars for Bloggers in Asia-Pacific, to honour the best of the blogosphere. We had 550 bloggers from 10 countries flying in to attend it: Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Australia, Thailand, Hong Kong, China, Brunei and even as far as Japan.
This is the hall before all the bloggers arrived. All prepared.
To tell the story about Napbas, let me share with you a snippet from the booklet we gave out that night. A message from Ming and Me to all the bloggers there.
Months before Nuffnang started back in 2007, we attended one of the early blogger gatherings in KL. Some 50 or so bloggers met up at a restaurant called Wizard World, a huge number in those early days of the blogosphere. The organizers were two passionate bloggers: Jolene and Yee Hou.
The event was a huge success but at the end of it, some bloggers had mistakenly left without paying for their own food. Jolene and Yee Hou who put in the effort to organize the gathering now found themselves a huge bill to settle. We offered to help cover the cost but they refused and managed to settle it on their own.
That incident changed the course of Nuffnang altogether. Initially planned to be just a Blog Advertising Network, we decided that we wanted Nuffnang to do more than just help bloggers earn from their blogs. Following that, Nuffnang started down the path of establishing a community instead. Our mission was to build and support the ecosystem in which the blogosphere exists in through various initiatives. In helping bloggers meet other bloggers, in finding talented bloggers and promoting them to the world and in creating opportunities for bloggers that never before existed.
Four years on, Nuffnang has changed the blogosphere in a way that surprises even us even today. No longer are brands and advertisers doubtful of the power of bloggers. They now embrace it. Almost every consumer brand out there today now has blogger engagement as part of its media or PR plan. Credibility of bloggers has also grown. Bloggers today are seen as independent journalists and are regularly invited whenever companies today launch a new product or initiative.
Top bloggers who used to earn a little bit of pocket money in the pre-Nuffnang days now earn enough to make blogging their full-time jobs. Some even going as far as to start new companies to house all their blogging income.
Then there is the social part of the blogosphere. Nuffnang has brought bloggers together not just locally but internationally. It all started with the Nuffnang-Chipster Pajama Party back in 2007 – Our first cross-border event that brought Malaysian and Singaporean bloggers together. Since then Nuffnang has expanded its wings to many other countries in Asia-Pacific. As Nuffnang’s reach grew geographically, so did opportunities for Singaporean Nuffnangers to meet Filipino Nuffnangers or Malaysian Nuffnangers to meet their Australian counterparts.
Today Nuffnang is home to over 1,000,000 bloggers throughout Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Australia, Hong Kong and China. Each of these countries have a local Nuffnang team that actively seeks to support the local blogosphere. From providing advertising income to bringing bloggers new experiences through sponsored trips or even to allow bloggers to meet other bloggers.
The size and power of the Nuffnang community in Asia-Pacific today gives us one important asset: A blogging community of powerful content creators who actively create thousands of new articles that are read by millions each day.
The Nuffnang-Asia Pacific Blog Awards was created two years ago to honour the Best of Asia-Pacific’s bloggers. The inaugural event was held in Singapore and involved 400 bloggers from four countries: Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines and Australia.
This year’s Nuffnang Asia-Pacific Blog Awards though is a far larger event. Look around the room and you will see 550 bloggers not just from Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Australia but also bloggers who have flown in from Thailand, Hong Kong, China and Indonesia. Tonight… great bloggers will be recognized, new cross-border friendships will be made but most importantly, we will all celebrate the phenomenon of blogging.
Let me bring you through the rest of the night in pictures.
The VW cars that were parked outside after bringing in a group of Malaysian bloggers in for the Awards.
Me with Jinn from Hitz.fm. His blog was a finalist in the category of the “Best Entertainment Blog”.
He just started blogging not too long ago so he didn’t expect to even make it to the finals but check out his blog and you’ll know why he got in. It’s amazing!
Me with Hui Wen, Ginny , Vivien Sam.
Me, Shorty and Fayth at the event.
Me, Shorty and Hanis who was a finalist in the “Most Influential Blog” category. She is one of the Top 10 people searched by Google in Malaysia for 2010 and 2011 so it’s no surprise she’s in there.
Bobo and me.
Harith Iskandar who gave a show that night. He was HILARIOUS!
Shorty and I are huge fans of our local stand-up comedy scene but up till that day we’ve never had chance to meet Harith. So when we saw him that night, we rushed for an opportunity to get a picture with him.
Me with Pang Kirari who is one of the top female bloggers in Thailand.
Me with the finalists from the Philippines. The Philippines contingent took home 4 of the 14 awards that night. Huge!
Philippines is tied with Malaysia for the most number of awards won that night. Both countries won 4 each.
Eric, our partner in Nuffnang Philippines with me and fellow Nuffie Tim2.
Our partners for Hong Kong and Australia. Kingston and David Lee.
Picture with the Nuffie girls before they started work that night. They looked gorgeous!
Rina and Anne who were really busy the whole weekend too.
And here’s Angeline and Rina. I sit next to the both of them in the office.
Our Nuffies manning the registration table. Registration was separated by the countries the bloggers came from.
Outside the ballroom in the cocktail area where bloggers gathered before the dinner, we had a gallery of all the finalists that night.
We had two bloggers from Indonesia too. They came not knowing anyone but by the end of the weekend they were like best friends with some of the bloggers there from Singapore and Japan.
Ming and I started with a speech that night on Nuffnang and how far we’ve come.
Me presenting the Award for the Region’s Best Blog to Xiaxue.
She cried. She didn’t win Best Lifestyle Blog earlier in the night and she thought she wasn’t going to win anything. She ended up winning two awards that night. Region’s Best Blog and The Most Influential Blog.
David Lee after presenting the award for the Best Geek Blog to Geekout from the Philippines.
One of the finalists from Australia that night came with this cute outfit with a dinosaur like tail. She got a lot of attention!
Me with Joyce and Linora from Red.FM.
A picture of all of us and the finalists that night.
Ringo and Kenny. Ringo won Best Fashion Blog and Kenny won Best Micro Blog.
Kingston and Jenni Epperson who won the Best Lifestyle Blog.
Reshmonu performed that night on stage too.
The Nuffnang Asia-Pacific Blog Awards booklet that we gave out that night.
Hui Wen and Bobo just walking into the hall.
It was a totally awesome night and I have to thank the sponsors who made it possible. VW, XPAX, Olympus, Air Asia and Putrajaya Marriott who made it all possible. And 76style for the hair 🙂
If you’d like to see more pictures of the awards click here.
If you’d like to see who won what click here.
And here’s a picture of Shorty and I at the Awards.
It was a wonderful night. Stressful at first with some glitches along the way but overall we enjoyed the night. We hoped you did too 🙂