Minister shuts down chatter on Visit Malaysia 2020 logo having grammatical error

Shortly after the launch of the new Visit Malaysia 2020 (VMY2020) logo, the internet has been abuzz with a grammatical error in the slogan which says "Visit Truly Asia Malaysia". According to media reports, the minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Mohamaddin Ketapi  said individuals with a good command of English will understand the tagline.

Meanwhile, there were also allegations that it was being plagiarised from another logo or modified from a Shutterstock graphic design. Mohamaddin said that the claims were "baseless" and that the new logo is an authentic design created by Alfred Phua, a graduate from INTI International University and Colleges and was not plagiarised, media outlets reported.

According to the minister, Phua graduated with first class honours, media outlets reported. He added that the new logo will be used in all promotional campaigns for VMY2020 and there is no reason for the ministry to change it.

This comes after an edited image of the logo began circulating online yesterday, with the rhinoceros hornbill allegedly copied from "Hornbill Studios". Some netizens have defended the new logo, saying that they do not see any similarities to the alleged logo from Hornbill Studios. Meanwhile, others explained that design processes usually begin with an inspiration which then helps individuals create their own design.

A fake logo of the Visit Malaysia 2020 campaign has been circulating on social media in which the hornbill part of the design was said to have been plagiarised from "Hornbill Studios".

According to Tourism Malaysia, the rhinoceros hornbill perched on the left illustrates the unique fauna and eco-adventures that Malaysia has to offer, while the red hibiscus represents the celebration of cultural diversity in Malaysia. Meanwhile, the wild fern also symbolises the unique flavours of Malaysian cuisine. As for the blue, red and yellow colours, they represent the colours of the national flag, while the orange colour illustrates the year-round sunshine Malaysia receives. Additionally, the green colour represents the abundance of nature in Malaysia.

According to Tourism Malaysia, each element in the logo individually showcases the diversity of experiences a tourist may embark on only on Malaysian soil. In addition to giving foreign tourists a taste of Malaysia’s bountiful offerings, the features in the logo also urges local Malaysians to advocate the preservation of our country’s identity as the nation moves forward in this fast-moving era of globalisation.

The designer, Phua, graduated from INTI with a degree in graphic design and said that while he enjoys music and dance, visual arts and photography interest him most. According to INTI's website, Phua said that every art piece and photo tells a distinctive story that inspired the artist and is a display of the individual's creative thoughts.