Why Foreign Entrepreneurs Are Pitching Dragons’ Chamber Taiwan

What is Dragons’ Chamber Taiwan?

This November 21st the Dragons will gather to pass judgement on five daring entrepreneurs and funding is the goal.

The Dragons in this case are experienced entrepreneurs and investors who will lord over five hopefuls during the fifth annual Dragons’ Chamber. A pitch event for foreign entrepreneurs in Taiwan much like the hit shows Shark Tank and Dragons’ Den

2019 Dragon’s discussing pitches

Co-organized by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and long term foreign entrepreneur Elias Ek and his company Enspyre as well as MUSA Trademark, Reach To Teach and Anemone Ventures, Dragons’ Chamber was founded to give foreign entrepreneurs a platform for exposure and funding in Taiwan.

Foreign entrepreneurs are currently invited to apply for the 2020 Dragons’ Chamber via their website. Qualified applicants will be invited to present their business plans to a vetting panel who pride themselves on giving raw, honest feedback. The final five teams will then go through several more steps of feedback and revisions before getting on the stage at the Dragons’ Chamber big stage on November 21st. The event is taking place during the annual Meet Taipei, Taiwan’s largest startup community event which in 2019 saw 460 exhibiting startups and more than 26,000 attendants. 

Alex Wagner, CEO, Monster Foods

Why pitch at Dragons’ Chamber Taiwan?

“It is always hard to start a business but doing it in a foreign country is doubly so,” says Elias Ek. “At Dragons’ Chamber the entrepreneurs get honest feedback that helps them clarify their strategies. We also wanted to create a platform that put the spotlight on what foreign entrepreneurs in Taiwan are achieving.” 

The 2019 Dragons’ Chamber winner Monster Foods CEO Alex Wagner says, “The most rewarding part of the experience was having the opportunity to sit down and speak with professionals that were willing to give honest and constructive feedback. Sometimes when you build something yourself, without much business experience, it’s hard to know if you are doing the right thing. Having this opportunity has really given me confidence in our future. If you are thinking about making a pitch this is definitely an experience that will help you grow. “

While the mentorship and exposure are the most important take-aways from the event, the teams are also competing for about 250,000 worth of products, services and cash donated by the sponsors. 

If you are running or planning to start a business and at least one of your co-founders are a foreign resident in Taiwan, apply for Dragons’ Chamber today to help take your company to the next level.

Application link: https://dragonschambertaiwan.com/are-you-an-entrepreneur/

For more information watch this video:

Young Girl Flies Into Air, Wrapped In Kite Tail | Hsinchu City International Kite Festival

Today, August 30th, 2020, a three year old girl was wrapped up in the end of a kite tail and ended up flying several meters into the air as the kite took off.

The incident took place at the Hsinchu City International Kite Festival at around 3:40pm in the afternoon near the Nanliao Harbor.

While preparign to launch a kite, several revelers were standing close to watch the kite take off. As the kite is launched strong winds kicked in and whipped the tail in such a way that the little girl was able to get entangled in the tail. The winds being very strong picked the little girl up a flung her high in the air.

Those watching started screaming and gasping at the sight and the kite was quickly brought to the ground where several onlookers grabbed the little girl out of the air and got her safely back on the ground.

The girl suffered no serious injuries after the incident except a few bruises and small lacerations. However one can imagine how traumatizing that must have been for a small child. Luckily she came out physically unharmed for the most part.

The Hsinchu City International Kite Festival was suspended for the time being. An investigation to the incident is underway and the festival will only reconvene after it has concluded.

Holger Chen, “Taiwan’s Joe Rogan”, Shot and Wounded 3 Times in Linkou

Holger Chen, known by some as Taiwan’s Joe Rogan, was shot and wounded three times outside his fitness center in Linkou, New Taipei this morning at around 2 am. He was rushed to the Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital for treatment where he underwent surgery for his wounds. The surgery lasted 6 hours and he is now in stable condition. He will be in the hospital for about a week.

The suspect surnamed Liu shot Chen, in the calf, in the thigh and in the arm.(Update: Two bullets hit Chen causing three wounds. One shot went through his arm and into his thigh, one went into his calf.) He got into a taxi and left the scene of the crime. However he turned himself in to the police less than an hour after the incident. He handed over a gun with 5 bullets to the police. He confessed to the crime but police couldn’t immediately question him due to his request for a lawyer.

Immediately after the incident Chen went live on Facebook, having one of his staff hold the camera for him. In the video he is sprawled out on the ground in pain. At one point he can be heard saying ”take care of my wife, my kids, and also my mom” and wailing in pain. Soon paramedics arrived to take Chen to hospital.

The suspect is alleged to have harassed Chen previously. The previous alleged incident was one where the suspect came to Chen’s fitness center and was touching Chen on the chest and arms, to which Chen threatened to sue him for millions if he didn’t stop and didn’t apologize. Chen also went on to talk about the incident in a live broadcast.

The taxi that the suspect left in was the same one he arrived in. The taxi driver was questioned and released after giving his statement. It is believed the driver had no idea about what was going to happen. The driver gave no statement to the press after leaving the police station.

Update: The former New Power Party chairman, Huang Kuo-chang, uploaded this CCTV footage to Facebook showing the moment of the attack on Holger Chen.

US Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt Asks For Photos Of Taiwan

US actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt recently asked for pictures of Taiwan for a project on his website, hitRECord.org, in a post to his Facebook page. Netizens have shared the post over 4,000 time and it has garnered over 21,000 reactions.

The photo he shared was a picture of the 2016 Taoyuan Lantern Festival in Taiwan, highlighting hundreds of red hanging lanterns above people’s heads.. The photo was originally taken by @kikishen and was shared as an example for people to post their own pictures of Taiwan for the project he on his site.

The post has caused quite a hub bub on social media. So much so that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs chimed in to praise the actor for his interest in Taiwan and also saying that “…he spoke to the media praising Taiwan’s #Coronavirus-fighting prowess.” MOFA also called for people to upload their own photos for the project on the site.

HitRECord is a platform for creators to find collaborators or make content directly on the site together. Contributors to projects that get monetized are able to share some of the profit from the venture. However Gordon-Levitt warns in his “HitRECord and money” that this isn’t going to be a way to make a living. Nevertheless its a great opportunity for anyone looking to fin projects to contribute to.

WHO, “Taiwan,China”, and PRC’s manipulation of UN organizations (opinion)

So Observers…… I have just been triggered…. call me a snowflake if you want, whatever floats your boat. I just saw a post in our TO – News from Taiwan group that got me miffed. This isn’t some “BREAKING NEWS” but I wanted to talk about it. Here we have some images of coming from the WHO, specifically World Health Organization Western Pacific Region, in which they mark Taiwan as “Taiwan, China”. In my eyes, unacceptable!
Taiwan has done exceptionally well at keeping the pandemic from ravaging our society like so many other countries have experienced. Yet we still get pushed to the side by the WHO, which is supposed to represent the world, but then excludes 23 million people. The US was right to leave the organization, the WHO is a joke.

This got me thinking how does China still make this happen? They barely occupied the island (never having full control) before giving it up to Japan in perpetuity. The island then declared independence as the “Republic of Formosa” before the Japanese came to invade making us their first colony. [our up coming book will explain more, stay tuned for that]

The way this happens is through the buying of developing nations votes in UN organizations with massive loans and debt traps by China. That’s how China gets away with this nonsense. They basically tell these nations that they have to vote the way China votes and will punish them if they don’t. China often speaks of retribution to countries that don’t want to play their game. Now for a developing nation with little money and massive debt to China that threat is very real and can push them to do things that might not ideologically agree with, like excluding Taiwan from the WHO.

This aggressive diplomatic policy isn’t sitting well with countries all over the world and will have a bad end for China and their emperor if they continue on the path. But authoritarian regimes don’t have much other choice do they? They have to keep their people obedient and distracted. Causing problems and the blaming it on the outsiders is a go to in the authoritarian play book. We will have to wait and see how long they can keep it up.

Ok rant over. Back to your lives!


The evolution of the Pokemon Go Grandpa! Is it his final form?

Taiwan’s famous “Pokemon Go Grandpa” has upgraded his set up yet again. Mr. Chen, in his seventies, has now got a staggering 64 phones and space on his bike for over 70 phones. All of which are running the Pokemon Go mobile game.

The latest images were uploaded to Facebook. One poster captions the post with “The uncle has no limits since his Asus sponsorship.” Mr. Chen since going viral in 2018 became a brand ambassador for Asus and keeps adding more phones to his bike.

Attached to the front of his bike you can see a basket with the Asus ZenFone branding on it and a rack of mostly Asus Smartphones. This is a great partnership for Asus and they sure are getting their money’s worth considering the number of times this story has gone viral. Every time he adds more phones and his set up gets more awe inspiring, people want to know about it. It surely caught my attention and the attention of over 13,000 people in just over an hour in a single Facebook group!


Many in the comments are asking “Is it safe?” “Can the uncle see the road?”. Legitimate concerns seeing how large his set up has grown. From just a few phones on his bike to over 60 at a time now.

This begs the question: How large can his set up get? Maybe we will see him evolve again or may this is now his final form? We will have to wait and see.

In 2018 Chen first went viral for having 11 phones. Nintendo Soup has been keeping track of his upgrades and in January 2019 reported him as having 21 phones. June 2019 they reported he had 30 phone, in October of 2019 he had 45 phones. Now he has 64 phones and counting.

Note: Original Facebook post was deleted, here is another.

Wackyboys Post Longer Version of Blackface Video, Weeks After First Video Taken Down

Local internet personalities, the Wackyboys, have released a new, longer version of their original blackface clip, which surfaced two weeks ago. The extended video, uploaded to their Facebook page and official YouTube channel, is almost 11 minutes long – fully edited with graphics and sound effects.

Soon after receiving backlash for their first video, which featured themselves in blackface imitating a popular meme of Ghanaian men dancing with a coffin, they removed it from their Facebook page. They also deleted photos from their Instagram account. 

Previous post that was removed.

In the most recent video published on June 15th, they can be seen getting dressed, putting on make-up, and heading out to the streets. They asked several pedestrians to join them in the dance, and followed others around with their prop coffin. 

Screenshot from new video on YouTube
Screenshot from new video on Facebook

Being a nuisance is not the problem here, though. Their use of blackface is the issue. Some of those who took part in a discussion regarding the first blackface incident talked about how we should give them a chance to learn and grow from their mistakes. Many were happy that they had chosen to delete their posts, and had issued apologies to those who spoke out via private messages. Those same people have reached out to me again, and this time, they are overcome by even greater disappointment and anger.

Several comments on the video are calling out the group for racism. One commenter called the video “messed up.” One posted a variant of the “That’s Racist” meme. Some tried to explain the situation, as many others had done before. Another commented: “This is discrimination. This is not entertainment…” and attached a link to an Apple Daily article about blackface. Another referenced the previous incident, and then said: “…At a time when we are fighting against all the injustices we have endured, you choose to make a mockery of us as black people? I don’t care how funny, or amusing the original video is, you could have done your skit/video without the use of blackface…”

Last time around, I said that these are times to educate, and urged people not to outright cancel them. This time, I can’t understand the reasoning. They had the chance to learn from their mistakes. They even went as far as to delete photos and videos. However, yet another video has been posted, this time longer and fully edited, meaning they had time to think about it, but chose to put up the video anyway.

BlackLivesMatter protests are currently unfolding in the United States and other parts of the world, including one in Taipei that we covered just a few days ago. These protests were sparked by the killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and countless others. Bearing this in mind, the Wackyboys’ decision to post this new video is particularly insensitive, especially since people have already tried to educate them on the history behind blackface, as well as the discrimination the black community faces on a daily basis.

Black Lives Solidarity Rally Taipei, June 13th

Black Lives Solidarity Rally, Taipei

The Black Lives Solidarity Rally this afternoon, June 13th, saw hundreds of demonstrators gather in the 2/28 Peace Park in Taipei. The rally was held in solidarity with all those demonstrating in the United States and around the world. Many demonstrators were from the expat community in Taiwan and the rally was held in English and Mandarin. 

Demonstrations like these have popped up all over the world showing support for Black Lives Matter sparked by the killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and countless others. Speakers at the rally read off a list of names of people killed by the police in the United States, urging all to “Say Your Names”. 

Musical performances, spoken word, and moments of silence were observed at the rally. Speakers gave insight into the systemic racism in the United states, higher incarceration rates for African Americans, reduced educational opportunities and more. They also touched on discrimination against aboriginals in Taiwan. 

One moment of silence observed was for 8:46. This was the amount of time Officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on the neck of George Floyd. Another moment was taking a knee in a show of protest against police brutality.

There was a police presence at the rally, notably without riot gear or excessive numbers. They felt like peacekeepers and observers of a peaceful demonstration. Freedom of speech was well represented in Taiwan today.

Organizers made it clear ahead of time that this was not a political rally. So foreigners didn’t have to worry about getting in any sort of trouble for joining the rally. 

Since the COVID-19 pandemic large gatherings have been restricted in Taipei. Last week  saw the easing of some of those restrictions, particularly for gatherings over 500 people in outdoor spaces. Taiwan has seen only 443 cases and 7 deaths, and has gone 2 months without a local transmission, meeting the requirements for easing of restrictions. Organizers said they had the required permits from the police for the rally. 

Something that struck me at the end of the rally was when the speaker asked us to tell the person standing next to us what we were going to do, a concrete action we were going to take, after today. Immediately a conversation was sparked. A conversation that hopefully moved people to act even if in just a small way.

Second Blackface Incident in Taiwan This Week

A video posted to the Facebook page of a Kaohsiung -based restaurant shows a man in blackface promoting the upcoming recall election of mayor Han Kuo-Yu. In the video, the man, dressed in a suit and tie, and wearing a headband promoting the recall election, urges people to get out and vote, and reminds them to wear a mask when doing so. He also mentions in the video that he is playing Tedros, the WHO director General, and makes a pun about wearing your mask and wearing your pants.

Taiwan Observer contacted the restaurant and inquired about the posts. The Facebook page features a number of pictures of the owner dressed up in a variety of different costumes, mainly portraying local deities and other characters. When asked if he knew how offensive this particular costume was to the black community, he claimed that it was not his intention in any way to mock or ridicule black people.

He went on to explain that he often paints his face different colors when portraying characters. He referenced his Guan Yu (an ancient military general) costume, wherein he painted his face red, and stated that he also painted his face white in his depiction of Chang’e, goddess of the Moon. He reiterated that painting your face when playing certain characters is common practice, and compared it to painting your face white when playing Ronald McDonald. He claimed that his only goal was to raise awareness for the upcoming recall vote in Kaohsiung, and to get people to mask up, not to ridicule any group of people.

Judging by the comment section, it is clear that many still do not understand how derogatory the use of blackface is to the black community. However, some commenters have attempted to bring the issue to his attention. When one commenter asked if the use of blackface was really necessary, the page issued t he following response (translated): “I also paint my face red when playing Guan Yu…Just smile…Don’t make too much of a fuss…Hahahahahaha.”

This is the second blackface incident on social media this week, this time specifically targeting Tedros. The WHO director general received backlash for accusing the Taiwanese government of facilitating a racist attack against him, as well as on Africans.

This incident coincides with the Black Lives Matter protests currently unfolding in the United States and around the world, which were sparked by the killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmad Arbery, George Floyd, and countless others.

Taiwan is now gaining more global recognition for its effective pandemic response and its push for soft power with mask diplomacy. Educating the public on issues important to the international community can only help to bring us closer to our allies.

*He has since deleted the video and issued the following apology (translated):

“Hello friends. I am the one who made the video that offended our black friends because of my ignorance towards our cultural differences. I apologize to the international community 120,000 points (times). I promise that I will do not this again. The post has been deleted. I am sorry.”

Internet Personalities in Blackface in Taiwan, Again

A few weeks ago, a dance group for a local nightclub, the “Luxy Boyz,” received backlash for performing in blackface. They were trying to emulate a popular meme of Ghanaian pallbearers dancing with a coffin, set to electronic music. The problem with this was the clear use of blackface, or darkening the skin to make oneself look “black,” which is historically associated with minstrel shows and discrimination towards people of African descent.

That being said, it seems the backlash towards the Luxy Boyz failed to educate the broader community, because just two days ago, on May 31st, another such incident occurred. Three men from a comedy group known as the “Wackyboys” took to the streets of Tianmu in Taipei, Taiwan, once again donning blackface.

The three men went to a department store in Tianmu, where they sported the same garb as the men in the meme, carrying a prop coffin, and danced. None of that is where the problem lies. Rather, the problem lies in the fact that these men did this while in blackface, which demonstrates their ignorance to how this is deeply offensive to the black community.

Unfortunately, the insult doesn’t stop there. One of the men from the group posted a picture to Instagram of them holding the coffin with the caption “My cotton is coming.” This part of the post was later edited out. Now, the man could have simply made a mistake, mistaking “cotton” for “coffin,” as English is not his first language; this is not a huge leap in logic. At the same time, this shows that the poster understands that this part of the post was discriminatory to African people and made the correction.

This begs the question: if he can understand that the reference to “cotton” is discriminatory, then it shouldn’t be a huge logical leap to see how his other actions are also discriminatory, right? Yet the post remained up and the video and pictures have weren’t deleted from Facebook or Instagram. (This has since changed)

The previous incident with the Luxy Boyz showed us that if you are willing to listen and educate yourself, you can make a change for the better. The Luxy Boyz have changed their routine since the backlash. They have kept the garb, the coffin, and the dance, but they have removed the blackface make-up. They also deleted the videos and issued a public apology. That is a step in the right direction.

As seen in the comment sections, many have yet to realize that the concept of blackface is not something to be taken lightly. Many find it hilarious. Some pointed out the need for a fourth person to complete the group, and that three isn’t enough. A few are calling them out, explaining how and why blackface is offensive to the black community.

An insightful comment from a local musician, @kerilmusic tries to explain to the men that their actions are discriminatory, even going so far as to provide a full history lesson on the topic, complete with resources, to help them better understand why their actions are discriminatory and why they cannot be tolerated. The comment received almost 100 likes on the Instagram post, before deletion.

When contacted by Taiwan Observer, @kerilmusic said he is deeply disappointed that he has not received a response from the Wackyboys, and added that this is particularly tone-deaf and insensitive, considering the BlackLivesMatter protests currently unfolding in the United States and other parts of the world.

These protests were sparked by the killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and countless others. The protests have been extensively covered by news outlets around the world, so it is not hard to believe that these career “influencers” have not seen what’s been going on.

However one of the group did respond to a fan saying that they did not mean to ridicule anyone and that they have deleted the posts. The Facebook video and Instagram posts have since been removed, but at the time of writing this, the Facebook photos remain visible to the public.

This isn’t to say that we condone sending hate messages to the Wackyboys or anyone else guilty of ignorance. We can use this opportunity, as @kerilmusic and many others did, to educate those that may still be ignorant, instead of calling for them to be “canceled” outright. The group has already started removing their posts, but they have yet to issue an apology. We will keep you posted if they do.

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