LAST CALL: Complete this sentence: 'Taiwan is' ... in need of PR?

You're working for Taiwan's Government Information Office and

you're given a brief 'to boost global awareness of Taiwan's special

achievements and unique international situation.'

Trouble is, your bosses have little appetite for flying expensive PR

companies to Taipei, putting them up in five-star hotels and paying them

vast amounts of money to come up with a slogan.

What to do? Here's the genius solution the PR guys came up with: put a

contest on the Internet and award the winner dollars 2,000, a laptop

computer and a trip for two to Taipei.

Under the headline 'Turn your words into cold cadollars h,' the

Taiwanese government set up a Web site asking for slogans under four

different headings, ranging from 'Taiwan's positive role in the

international community' to 'Taiwan: A thriving democracy.'

The office was 'overwhelmed with catchy, punchy slogans,' and posted the

top 30 entries online (, where visitors can

vote for their favorites.

In front now are 'Our roots may be in hi-tech, but our leaves remain

lush and green' (106 votes); 'How can the world community promote

democracy while hiding its best model?' (79 votes); and 'Small and

powerful like a microchip. Green and precious like a jewel. Taiwan - the

wonderland' (58 votes).

Posters to Gen X Web site, however, were less


Their suggestions ranged from the vaguely possible ('Taiwan: The new

West Berlin'), to the unlikely ('Mother: China, Father: Japan ... Uncle:

Sam') and the downright rude ('Taiwan: We have copies of stuff you

haven't even invented yet!')

Winners will be announced tomorrow (March 20)

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