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HK Magazine Archive

Why Rachel Mok Pissed Off the Wrong Photographer

Would you ever do your job for just Facebook likes? Not photographers Deric Wong and Marcobilly Chong, and apparently not our readers either.

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 05 November, 2015, 1:10pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 October, 2016, 4:52pm

Deric Wong, who has photographed celebrities like Andy Lau, Gregory Wong, and Fiona Sit, was contacted by Rachel Mok to photograph an event involving 45 families and their one-year-old babies.

Mok offered to "like and share ur fb [sic]" and, after being declined, offered to let him post the images on his own Facebook page. In response, Wong revealed that he would charge $15,000 for the job.

In other words, Mok asked the wrong guy.

Mok also tried Marcobilly Chong, who sternly explained how buying ads would be more cost effective than doing a free event for 45 families, then suggested that each family chip in to pay for the gig.

Later in the conversation, Mok patronizes Chong by asking if he knows how to do business, to which Chong says, "I know what doing business is and yours is doing a free service."

It's impressive how Chong is able to stay civil throughout the entire conversation. It probably helps that he has the patience to attend endless wedding ceremonies to put bread on the table.

We were curious and polled our Twitter followers on getting paid in "likes"—all of the respondents said they'd only take monetary payment as well. Likes can't, like, pay the bills, y'know.

But hey, at least they got some free publicity.


Here's a translation of Chong's conversation (English text is direct):

Rachel Mok: Hihi
RM: I want to ask if you have time this week to help take photos at our party
Marcobilly Chong: What am I being paid? Not just word of mouth
RM: We are Oct mama group and we will hv a Baby 1 yr old birthday party, we hv 45 families join the party and we are will ing to like and share ur fb
MC: If only share n like on Fb dosent mean we will get something in return for sure. If I use the job money and place an ad on Fb I could get more then 20k clicks. If 45 famimies why not hire a proper photographer and each family maybe only cost $100. For this amount of people's better to hire a real professional photographer and not just looking for a free photographer. Professional will not be free.
RM: Thx for eeply
RM: Reply
RM: Coz we hv limited budget

MC: Each family can't even affort $100 ??
RM: Coz the party place is exp this time
MC: If u all can afford an exp place $100 bucks is just nothing...at the end if really cannot afford then u should consider take the photo by yourself... n not ask for someone do it for free for u n just bcoz u all rented an exp place!! What's the difference between you and a college kid trying to get free food for a party?
MC: And why not ask the venue sponsor the party too ??
RM: It's a fair trade la I think
RM: It's not your business how I organize the party
RM: You give us free photos, I tell the moms and dads to like and share your fb
RM: Buying an ad isn't going to cover one job
RM: How do you even do business
RM: These things can be mutually agreed upon, it's fair

MC: So the venue doesn't let you use the venue for free, why do you think you have bargain power
MC: This is called not fair
MC: Do my camera and equipment not cost money?
RM: What do you know about what services the venue is giving me
MC: You think your 45 families have such great bargain power
MC: How about you pay me full price
RM: Do you even know what it means to do business
MC: If you can explain what business is, maybe I will take it back
MC: I know what doing business is and yours is doing a free service
RM: How do you even get returning customers with this kind of customer service
MC: Please respect my profession
MC: Every customer I have had has paid me in money

RM: I didn't disrespect you, just need a business mindset to do business
MC: This is not called business, this is called cheaping out
MC: You are not being logical
MC: Would you buy a chicken for $2000
RM: Don't you think getting so much exposure is a good enough return
MC: 45 families counts as what
RM: So you're not taking your business opportunity seriously
MC: I could pay $3000 to get the return of 300 times your 45 families
MC: This isn't a business opportunity
MC: Even a $200 ad gets more than 40 likes
RM: You only look at money, don't think ahead for the long term, how do you operate
MC: THUMBS UP
MC: Without talking money how do you talk business

RM: There's money at the beginning?
RM: Customers need to be accumulated
MC: Accumulating customers like you will run me out of business
RM: One free customer for unlimited business opportunities
MC: When I see you I know you demand free service, but I see no business opportunities
MC: One free gig will only get me more free gigs
MC: So why don't you just take your own pictures
RM: With such a petty person like you, talking to you is a waste of breath
RM: Smart, take our own photos, of course we will
MC: I bet I'm the only one who would respond to you, how many other photographers have you gotten responses from??

RM: There were many polite people responding
RM: The only rude one was you
MC: Say no ar ma... (you're kidding me)
RM: Even if they say no, they're not like you
RM: I respect those professionals
MC: You don't even treat photographers as professionals
RM: You're just ignorant