Samsung’s Fake Galaxy Tab Interviews: Hey, Those Words Sound Familiar!

By  |  Saturday, March 26, 2011 at 10:15 am

When I watched the video interviews with three “true-life” Galaxy Tab users that Samsung showed at its CTIA event, I was observant enough to figure out (with the help of about six minutes of Google research) that two of the users were actors and the other one works for a film-production company that counts Samsung among its clients. But I didn’t notice or detail every oddity about  them. Folks who are discussing my story on all this, both in the comments and elsewhere on the Web, are having fun pointing out other curious things about the interviews, such as the fact that “leading New York real-estate CEO Joseph Kolinski” raves about the 8.9″ Galaxy Tab even though the only 8.9″ Tabs that Samsung itself had on hand at CTIA were non-working models.

Phil Earnhardt watched the YouTube version of Samsung’s CTIA event very carefully. The interviews open with fake magazine covers about the “interview” subjects…

Which open to simulated magazine spreads on the subjects…

The pages flip by in a jiffy, by Phil was apparently interested enough to hit pause and zoom in, so he could read the text on the real-state CEO interview. (As numerous people have noticed, it identifies him as Joseph Korinski even though he’s called Joseph Kolinski elsewhere, and seems to be played by an actor named…Joseph Kolinski.)

Here’s a fuzzy-blow up:

Phil even figured out that the text was lifted from a review of the original Galaxy Tab. One that wasn’t glowing–for instance, the text that Samsung’s video producers lifted says that the Tab is “no where near as polished and complete” as the original iPad.

When Phil quoted the review, it sounded familiar. As well it should have: I wrote it. It’s the piece I did for TIME last November.

The “business magazine” that “interviewed” Kolinksi/Korinski has a TIME-like red ribbon around its cover; perhaps whoever was responsible for mocking it up decided that it would be appropriate to, um, borrow words from TIME to fill it.

I’m amused by this twist. But now I’m more befuddled then ever. Let’s see: Neither Joseph Kolinski nor Joseph Korinski is a real leading New York real-estate tycoon. But Joseph Kolinski is a real successful New York actor. And while the words in his magazine-interview text aren’t his own, they are real. It’s just that they’re mine…


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32 Comments For This Post

  1. John.Obeto Says:


    Was there any attribution at all?

  2. Muay Thai Says:

    Probably not lol. Muay Thai Combinations | Muay Thai Kick | Martial Arts for Children

  3. Lawn Mowing Online Says:

    Where’s the fail whale when you need him?

  4. curious Says:

    Is there a copyright violation there?

  5. CndnRschr Says:

    At least you can say Samsung is consistent in their copying. Plagiarism or flattery or they simply don't get it? I wonder if the real Jeff played a part in the filming and editing? Were the Samsung pitch men played by actors too (or second hand car salesmen)?

  6. Sarcon Says:

    Sadly, Samsung lost my business long ago. I bought a Samsung P&S camera from them a couple years ago. It was way behind the times. And I bought a Samsung Laser Printer. Toasted itself in under two years.

    Samsung may be a good company, but their commercial products? No thanks.

  7. BC2009 Says:

    Were those their real executives delivering that message or actors? And are Samsung Galaxy Tab sales to end-users "smooth" like peanut butter or "small" like the number of real people in this video they produced.

  8. johnwbaxter Says:

    This sounds like a great recipe for an agency for losing an advertising account.

  9. @benapplegate Says:

    Samsung owns its own advertising agency that they use for all their Korean ads and the Konglish all over the "magazine" cover suggests that they're responsible for this. So no, no one will be losing an account over this. Given my four years of experience in corporate Korea, I would expect no one will even be punished.

  10. Shawn Reed Says:

    …if it's this obvious, they had to have wanted to be found out.

  11. Mike Says:

    I wonder if your use of their use of your article constitutes fair use?

  12. @jayfrombkk Says:

    Fake people making fake comments about fake iPads; perfectly symmetrical.

  13. zengxeng Says:

    LOL, dude makes a lot of sense when you think about it.

  14. Hamranhansenhansen Says:

    This is sad, because today, more than ever, you should be doing real press. These should be real products and real users. You can't fake buzz, today. If there is a real product, really generating buzz, real users will make real campaigns like this all by themselves on Facebook and Twitter. The fact that Samsung doesn't know that is bizarre. It shows a lack of understanding of the iPad market (*not* "tablet market") that they are trying to break into with a generic clone product. iPads are sold 100% by word of mouth, like maybe no other product in history. People don't even know what iPads are *for* until a friend demos it for them.

    So if Samsung actually made a good product here, it would just sell itself. No BS would be necessary.

    I got a Samsung display that I love and a bunch of Samsung hard disk mechanisms that have served me very well, and a bunch of components in my Apple products are Samsung. This has really lowered my opinion of them, though. I hope the CEO calls a meeting over this and fires everybody who was involved, including himself if he was involved. What a disaster.

  15. Simon Hibbs Says:

    I have experience in China rather than Korea, but over there this sort of fakery is routine. They simply don't have the same distinction between acceptable and unacceptable advertising. Here in the UK we have the Advertising Standards Authority, but there's no such thing over there. Consumer protection just doesn't exist. like I said that's China, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if the situation in Korea is similar, or maybe somewhere inbetween.

  16. nofunleague Says:

    Sounds like Samsung should be in the Copier business.

  17. Chas Goldin Says:

    The way that Google products are being pushed to try to compete with Apple reminds me of the way that Microsoft tried to push their products to try to compete with Google–if you can't deliver substance, give them slick presentation value. Has been going on since PT Barnum's time.

  18. Shi Rin Says:

    This is sad and shameful actually for such a company like Samsung use marketing methods like this. It makes me dislike their products more than I would if I myself found tech-errors in them

  19. Rob Says:

    Bought a Galaxy Tab recently and very happy with the purchase. The graphics and the touch screen are excellent! I wished I would have waited for the 10” model to be available though.

    I was looking for a simple sleeve case that wouldn’t cost an arm and a leg and found a small company, called which sells a simple sleeve for only $7.95 with shipping included.

    If anyone knows where I can get a portable standalone battery charger at a good price, please let me know.


  20. Laugher Says:

    This must be a PR stunt, they can't be that retarded, come on, this is cutting edge stuff

  21. Greg Says:

    Did anyone notice that “Entertainment” was missing the last “n” on the fake magazine frame for the “filmmaker”? This stuff was clearly thrown together in a slip shod way.

  22. Crawdaddct Says:

    Does anyone ever watch TV? People act like they are customers all the time. Since the production company is owned by Samsung, maybe they had used the device for a couple of min. This is realy a non story. Apple and every other company in the world uses actors and has them act like customers. They dont want some fat bald guy saying, Samsung is great.

  23. Paul Says:

    Most of those commercials also disclose when they are using either paid actors instead of real people when giving testimony or they say that they are the actual people and have been compensated. Either that or they jut show actors, but don't identify them as specific people like "John Smith, Lawyer from Albuquerque, NM".

    Samsung is not making this and in fact they are saying that these people are really who they claim they when they are someone else in reality. IN essence, they are making stuff up in all likelihood.

  24. Mike Says:

    Joan's "Travel Magazine" interview article (at 8:07) next to the headline "Interview Project TAB Lifestyle" is taken from:

    Guess Joan's travel writing wasn't good enough.

  25. Jim W. Says:

    I hope this doesn't sound stereotypical, and I don't know Korean, but I'm guessing that it is a language that has a phoneme exactly halfway between L and R (like Japanese does). If so, this would make it difficult for a Korean employee in the ad agency to remember the spelling of Korinski versus Kolinski.

  26. Dave Says:

    I think Jim W. nailed it! It reminds me of an old story: Legendary announcer Lon Simmons traveled with the 49rs to the far east to call a rare preseason game. When he finally arrived at the hotel, he was not pleased to learn that they had no room reserved in his name. However, a bit of investigation revealed that they did have a reservation for a Mr. RON Simmons!

    Shades of "Lost in Translation".

  27. Sebastian Says:

    Message to the editor: "the them" should be "them" and one "reader" should be "read" 🙂

  28. Meredith Greene Says:

    lol. The digital version of "whoops!" Imagine that for 6 minutes of Google research they might have avoided the embarrassment. Tab is an awful name for a device anyway,for it immediately reminds one of cheap, sugary soda.

  29. loonggood2 Says:

    The “business magazine” that “interviewed” Kolinksi/Korinski has a TIME-like red ribbon around its cover;

  30. piso para vestidores Says:

    Sadly, Samsung lost my business long ago. I bought a Samsung P&S camera from them a couple years ago. It was way behind the times. And I bought a Samsung Laser Printer. Toasted itself in under two years.

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