Dear TikTokers and YouTubers,
Well there is an opening I never thought I would write. Anyway. Thanks for coming en masse to Thailand. Debating if this last sentence is sarcastic. While I appreciate your interest in our culture and your desire to share it with the world, I feel compelled to address a concerning trend that has emerged: a lack of respect for our local Thai culture.
Let me be clear: Thailand is not the West. We shower twice a day and we don’t do disrespectful prank videos. We also have our own unique customs, traditions, and way of life that have been passed down through generations.
Our culture is rich, diverse, and deserves to be treated with utmost respect. It is not something to disregard “for the lolz or the likes.” It deeply troubles me to see some of you disregarding this fact and imposing Western perspectives and behaviors upon our society.
Thai people take great pride in our traditions and values. We value modesty, humility, and showing respect to others. Generally, we place value in our community and take care of one another. An insult to one of us is generally insulting to all of us. Yet, it seems that some of you have failed to grasp the significance of these aspects of Thai culture.
I think a simple golden rule should apply when visiting our country. Don’t do shit here that you wouldn’t do back home. Don’t prank and harass people on our public transport. Don’t haggle needlesly with vendors to show how cheap it is here. Don’t disrespect Thai women by catcalling on the street and asking them how much. It’s not much to ask.
Don’t be this asshole.
Educate yourselves before you visit our country and present it to your followers. Take the time to learn about our customs, etiquette, and the do’s and don’ts that are deeply ingrained in our society. Don’t assume that your Western values and behaviors are universally applicable. Understand that the use of our national symbols and images should be approached with sensitivity and cultural understanding.
I urge you to reconsider the sensationalism and exaggeration that often pervades your content. Thailand is not a theme park or a backdrop for your entertainment. It is a vibrant and complex nation with a history, struggles, and triumphs that deserve to be treated with integrity and accuracy.
Avoid perpetuating stereotypes or exploiting local traditions for the sake of views and clicks. Instead, approach your content creation with a genuine desire to foster cross-cultural understanding and appreciation.
I understand that this may be difficult. Especially given the iq level of some of your channels but please try.
Thailand is a country that welcomes visitors from all over the world with open arms. We are eager to share our culture, traditions, and hospitality with those who approach us with an open mind and a genuine respect for our way of life. But remember respect is a two way street.