S’pore Fashion Brand Beyond The Vines Apologises For Hastily Addressing Remarks About Israel & Palestine

Beyond The Vines Accused Of Rushing Through Remarks On Israel & Palestine

Due to the sensitive nature of the ongoing situation in Israel and Palestine, one must make comments tactfully and with extra care. Unfortunately, local fashion brand Beyond The Vines (BTV) recently came under criticism for its hasty approach to addressing the matter.

Particularly, the discontent arose from BTV co-founder Rebecca Ting’s attempt to address concerns regarding her husband, who had previously followed the social media page of a non-profit organisation based in Jerusalem.

Netizens took issue with Ting’s response, claiming that it was done too casually and hastily.

Beyond The Vines founder gets flak for following Israel NGO on Instagram

The entire episode began earlier this month when netizens found out that Daniel Chew — Ting’s husband and fellow co-founder of BTV — was following Fellowship of Israel Related Ministries (FIRM) on Instagram.

Last Thursday (9 Nov), Chew clarified in a series of Instagram Story posts that he had followed the page earlier this year before the start of the conflict.

He explained that the Instagram page initially posted about food tours and adventures that are off the beaten path.

However, Chew said that the page’s content angle has since changed and he has thus unfollowed them.

Source: @danielgchew on Instagram

Chew also revealed that he and Ting had donated funds to aid humanitarian work during conflicts, and the ongoing one affecting Palestine is no exception.

Source: @danielgchew on Instagram

Co-founder addresses controversy in livestream

The following day (10 Nov), Ting hosted a livestream on the BTV Instagram page, launching a new collection of bags and apparel.

About three minutes into the livestream, she started addressing the issue concerning her husband.

Ting, however, said that she didn’t want to “hang around that point for too long” as she wanted to “move on” and talk about the new collection.

She then sat down in one of the office’s rooms and went through five points relating to her husband’s controversy.

Even though she seemed rather serious when speaking about the issue, she appeared rather jolly as she moved on to talk about the new bag collection.

Source: @beyondthevines on Instagram

You can watch the full livestream here.

Netizens criticise Beyond The Vines’ handling of situation

Netizens did not take kindly to the livestream, with many pointing out in the comments that Ting’s approach was inappropriate.

This Instagram user, for example, felt that she was almost too keen to move on to launching the collection in the video and accused her of sounding “privileged”.

Source: Instagram

Another commenter took issue with how Ting was seemingly giggly despite “try[ing] to appear apologetic”.

Source: Instagram

She also pointed out that Chew should’ve been on the livestream as well to address the issue.

Some even called for a complete boycott of the brand’s products.

Source: Instagram

Singapore fashion brand issues apology

BTV subsequently issued a statement on Thursday (16 Nov) morning, addressing the events that occurred over the past fortnight.

Source: @beyondthevines on Instagram

Acknowledging that their words and behaviour were “insensitive” and “inappropriate”, Ting and Chew apologised for the hurt that they had inflicted.

The fashion brand also said that they do not condone the mass killing of innocent Palestinians and expressed their thoughts and prayers.

However, BTV confessed that they made some hurtful mistakes through their words and mannerisms during the livestream.

They also said that the situation should not have been handled in such a brief manner but rather, with more care.

Ending the statement, Ting and Chew reiterated their apology and hoped that they would be allowed to learn from the episode.

You can find the full statement here.

Also read: Workers’ Party Clarifies Stance On Israel-Hamas Conflict, Wanted More Balanced Approach In Earlier Statement

Workers’ Party Clarifies Stance On Israel-Hamas Conflict, Wanted More Balanced Approach In Earlier Statement

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Featured image adapted from Beyond The Vines.

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