AsiaOne, Lianhe Wanbao apologise to Nicole Seah and Steven Goh over inaccurate headline

·Nurul Azliah Aripin
Nicole Seah speaks at a rally for presidential candidate Tan Jee Say in this file photograph. (Yahoo file photo) (Marianne Tan)

News site AsiaOne and Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao have issued a public apology to Nicole Seah and Steven Goh over an inaccurate headline.

Both news platforms, run by Singapore Press Holdings, published the apology on their respective websites. Lianhe Wanbao posted the apology on Wednesday while AsiaOne on Thursday after both sites had published an inaccurate article featuring National Solidarity Party member Seah and social site mig33 CEO Goh.
The stories – which have drawn flak online - were both posted on the respective sites on Tuesday suggesting that Seah was dating a married man. In reality, however, the man, Steven Goh, is actually divorced.

The headline published on AsiaOne said, “Nicole Seah uploads photo of her with a man believed to be married,” while the one in Lianhe Wanbao said, “Nicole Seah posts intimate photo of herself with a married man on Facebook”.
“AsiaOne would like to unreservedly apologise to Miss Nicole Seah and to Mr Steven Goh for any distress and inconvenience caused,” said AsiaOne editor Adrian Tay.
In Lianhe Wanbao’s apology, written in Chinese, it said, “…we mentioned [in the story] that Seah was seeing a married man named Steven Goh. In the article, we also stated that the status of this man’s marriage is not clear. However, we later found out this man is already divorced. Because we did not clearly state this man’s marital status in the article, we wish to apologise to both parties for the inconvenience caused.”
The apologies came after the respective articles were edited on Wednesday. Wanbao has changed the story to add that Seah is currently seeing Goh, whose former wife is in Malaysia. The headline has been changed to “Nicole Seah has a new relationship, shows off intimate photo on Facebook”.
AsiaOne has changed the story’s headline to “Nicole Seah says she is dating man in photo she uploaded on Facebook”.
On Tuesday, when the original articles were published on both sites, Nicole Seah posted a response on her Facebook profile saying, “There are news reports in BOTH English and Chinese mainstream media that I am seeing a married man. This is NOT true at all…”
She added that the article was inaccurate and unacceptable and published another post asking SPH for an official apology for the “irreversible damage” caused to her reputation.
Yahoo Singapore has approached Seah for comments on the apologies.

Additional reporting by Peace Chiu.

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