'Rap battle' goes viral on Facebook
Singtel user's rap comment over broadband disruption gets unexpected response from telco
When Internet access is down, some turn to song.
This was how one Singtel user reacted to the 24-hour weekend disruption to the telco's fibre broadband service.
Mr Marc Rai, 31, posted an Eminem-style rap comment - with his own twist to the lyrics of the song Stan by Eminem - on Singtel's Facebook page on Saturday night, expressing his frustrations in song.
"I sent two e-mails this afternoon, you must not-a got 'em.
"There probably was a problem at your mail server or somethin'," he said in the post.
He was surprised when the telco's assistant manager of social media relations, Miss Nurul M.,responded in similar fashion on Sunday.
She had seen the rap on Saturday and after she got off work at 2am, she could not sleep.
Miss Nurul, who is in her mid-20s, told The New Paper: "I kept thinking about how to reply to that customer's message because it was written as a rap which is very unusual.
"I thought I should also write a reply that would hopefully do his justice... I used to be an Eminem fan, so I knew the song."
Her reply, posted from Singtel's official Facebook account, included lines like: "We're sorry 'bout your WiFi, and mobile data too.
"Don't think we would do that kinda thing just to hurt you."
The "rap battle" went viral, with about 1,200 likes and 500 shares. Singtel's reply had more than 2,100 likes at press time.
Mr Rai said he did not expect Singtel to respond in such a way.
He told TNP: "She handled it in a humorous way which made people calm down and put a smile on their faces.
"It feels cool drafting a rapping complaint but it gets even better to get a rapping response as well as some answers and assurance about the issue."
Miss Nurul said her job of answering customers' queries was not easy.
"Every customer is unique and interacts with us in different ways on social media. I usually try to take my cue from the tone of their message and write back in a way that would hopefully speak to them," she said.
Singtel said it would thoroughly investigate the disruption and has tried to appease customers by offering discounts to all broadband subscribers. It will also waive mobile data charges for the weekend.
The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) said yesterday that it takes Singtel's service disruption very seriously, and is investigating the cause(s) of the incident and the service recovery measures.