Miss Grand Vietnam mired in controversy over alleged plagiarism

By Thien Anh   January 8, 2023 | 07:21 pm PT
The English presentation of 2022 Miss Grand Vietnam Doan Thien An at the contest in September stirred controversy online over a recent alleged plagiarism.

A TikToker uploaded a video online to prove that the content in An’s presentation is 90% similar to an article that was posted online prior to the contest. An was later heavily criticized by people who accused her of stealing other people’s work. The critics called for a boycott of the shows and events that she participated in.

"I thought she prepared this presentation herself," TikToker Du Tran commented on the platform. "She should have credited the original author. This is not a good look."

But there are also people who stood by An and said what she did was not plagiarism.

"The organizers already said that the contestants can use references for their English presentation," Bach Yen wrote on his Facebook page. "Other contestants could also have done that, and not just Thien An. I don’t see any problem here. She’s being criticized for no reason."

The 2022 Miss Grand Vietnam Doan Thien An. Photo by Sen Vang

The 2022 Miss Grand Vietnam Doan Thien An. Photo by Sen Vang

An and her agency kept silent amid the controversy.

Meanwhile, on Thursday night, the unit in charge of English training for the 2022 Miss Grand Vietnam contestants said that the workshop took place over a short time, and so the organizers didn’t require participants to have full comprehension skills in English or to have any certain requirement for the answers of the contestants.

For those who have not yet perfected their English-language skills, the organizers will support them with content and prepare some reference materials so that they can speak on stage more confidently. This makes it easier for the organizers to check the phonetics of the contestants.

This unit affirmed that this was only a small challenge that was not included in the content of the contest, so it didn’t affect the evaluation of the judges and the final results.

The TikTok video compares Doan Thien An's speech with an online article

A representative of the unit said: "Miss Grand Vietnam Doan Thien An is a confident girl who was not afraid to express herself when she was as a contestant. An's English level is not excellent, but after her presentation, we had new perspectives about her ability to communicate as well as her public presentation skills.

In order to complete difficult speeches, not only An, but all the contestants needed more time to prepare. Those who love the competition will have a more open and positive view on this because the main purpose of these activities is to bring experience and inspire a passion for learning English."

Doan Thien An won the 2022 Miss Grand Vietnam on October 1 in HCMC. The 22-year-old beauty queen was born in Long An and is now a student at the Faculty of Business Administration, Industrial University of HCMC.

After winning the crown, Thien An had just three days to prepare for the 2022 Miss Grand International pageant, where she finished in the top 20 and won the Best National Costume Performance.

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