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"Like" service proves popular in Viet Nam

Update: November, 05/2013 - 09:58

As news websites compete for views and Facebook pages strive to gain "likes", a new service offers them the chance to look more popular.

Website administrators can pay a fee to watch views soar overnight and Facebook page administrators can buy "likes" from a community of professional "likers" who have dozens of Facebook accounts, according to online newspaper Tuoi tre.

While buying views and "likes" seems like an easy way for websites to gain popularity, the online community and businesses have expressed concern about the trend.

"Looking at these statistics, it's impossible to know what is real and what is not," Nguyen Khoa Hong Thanh, director of Emerald Digital Marketing, told Tuoi tre.

Doctors cash in on patients' paranoia

Offering gifts to doctors, especially envelopes of money, has become so common in Viet Nam that some don't even view it as bribery. Many patients argue that it is a way to show gratitude.

Doctors also have their own reasons for accepting gifts from patients or patients' families.

Dr Dang Hanh De, founder and chairman of the Viet Nam Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery Association, revealed his own reason in an interview with news website Soha.

Families of patients often offered him envelopes before operations, De said. The specialist in cardiovascular surgery accepted the money because he was afraid that if he refused, the patients and their families would not be able to sleep and the physical strain of worrying would affect the operation.

"If a patient is too worried, their heart beats fast and irregularly," De explained.

He added that after the operation, he tried to return the money to the families.

It seems people always come up with good reasons to accept presents.

Car owners act on a wing and a prayer

Owners of expensive cars have always been worried about having the wing mirrors of their cars stolen by thieves.

Since a set of wing mirrors can cost dozens of millions of dong, thieves try to snatch them in any way they can, even if the driver parks the car for only a moment or stops before a red light – sometimes even if the car is moving!

A garage in HCM City has a new idea to relieve drivers' worries. They strengthen the joints of the wing mirrors to make them resilient and unbreakable.

But peace of mind comes at a price. The service can be costly, between VND1-7 million (US$47-330).

Moreover, many are concerned that the "protected" wing mirrors make expensive cars look less fancy. — VNS

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