Sony "surprised & disappointed" by Daryl Aiden Yow saga, says it's looking into the matter

28 hours later, we have a reply.

Mandy How | June 21, 2018, 04:03 PM

After 28 hours since local photographer Daryl Aiden Yow was discovered to have images on his Instagram that were strikingly similar to stock photos and other photographer's work, one of his main clients, Sony, has responded.

"Surprised and disappointed"

In response to queries from Mothership on Tuesday afternoon, the electronics brand expressed surprise and disappointment at the turn of events, adding that it is "currently looking into (the) matter".

A spokesperson for Sony added that they "do not condone any action such as plagiarism" and "take a serious stance on it".

This is their rather shortly-worded response in full:

"With regards to your query below, Sony Singapore has worked with Daryl and we are surprised and disappointed with what has been reported and are currently looking into this matter. Sony strongly encourages the art of creativity, however we do not condone any action such as plagiarism and take a serious stance on it."


Comments left on Sony's Instagram & Facebook pages

As a leading camera brand, Sony's ongoing collaboration with Yow to promote their photography equipment has become one of the key points in this entire episode.

And yes, some of the photos used for the posts they were declared to have sponsored bore, as we mentioned, striking similarity to stock photos we found online.

Here's just one example:

To make matters worse, one of Yow's photos looked very much like a stock photo that wasn't even taken with a Sony camera:

(You can find more here, by the way:)

In the absence of any response from Sony, which oddly enough continued posting updates to its social media that were unrelated to the ongoing ruckus regarding their brand ambassador online, some users posted jesting comments aimed at the brand on their Instagram feed through the better part of Wednesday:

Some even called them out for their association with an alleged fraud:

While others peppered their comments with persistent questions – which we will agree we had too:


Their Facebook page wasn't spared, either:

Full post:

"1. This is what happens when you think your followers are stupid. This is what happens when you use Instagram for money. You become emboldened to commit fraud & theft and expect to get away with it. But some people got 200 followers and don't get money from instagram also do the same thing.

2. Why is nobody calling out his clients? Very big names on his website. What about the camera companies who are sponsoring the fella? These companies are the enablers. Problem stems from hiring marketing executives who know nothing about influencer marketing, or marketing in general (this is becoming a trend).

3. Camera companies, Sony Singapore Canon Singapore Nikon, instead of sponsoring morons like these maybe you wanna reach out to your loyal returning customers who are ACTUAL practicing photographers and find out how we can improve the industry and help each other TOGETHER.

4. Next week another person will do the same thing lah. So stop wasting time on this fella and get back to shooting."

The Sony Creative ally campaign

But we should tell you more about the prominence of Sony's sponsorship for Yow. Earlier this year, Yow was selected as one of just three faces for a campaign by Sony called "Creative Ally".

His latest post relating to the Creative Ally campaign, which is marked with the hashtag #SonyCreativeAlly, was on March 21, 2018:

It was a follow-up post to a post advertising a photography workshop he was slated to run, posted three days earlier:

Both posts were hashtagged with #SonyCreativeAlly.

Interestingly, though, some of the posts relating to his collaboration with Sony have disappeared — not just from Yow's end but also Sony's.

We noticed that a Google link to a Facebook post of the campaign appears to have disappeared:

As did the Creative Ally campaign's microsite:

(The link now leads to Sony's main page instead.)

Furthermore, a Google image search of the term "Sony SG creative ally Daryl Aiden" turns up images and links that feature Yow in relation to the campaign, but the photos, when clicked, would not lead to any campaign pages on Sony's website:

Instead, they linked to Sony's generic camera page.

Of course, there is always the possibility that Sony removed the related links because the campaign was over.

#DarylAidenxSony hashtag on Instagram

Since the blow-up that began Wednesday, some of Yow's posts that he marked with the #DarylAidenxSony hashtag on Instagram are no longer accessible to the public.

Here are some of the posts that can no longer be found on his profile, or on the hashtag search feed:

Source: Victor Goh

As of June 21, 12.37pm, these are the posts left that carry the#DarylAidenxSony hashtag:

Sony declines to comment further

When asked about the disappearance of the links and Instagram posts, Sony's spokesperson declined further comment, instead reiterating that they are "looking into the matter".

We'll bring you more developments on Sony's end if they should take further action.

In the meantime, here are more related articles on the saga:

[Update on June 21, 11.45pm: We have updated the desktop screenshot for the "sony sg creative ally daryl aiden" search as the previous screenshot had a typo in the search term.]

Top image composite from Daryl Aiden Yow's Instagram, Deposit Photos, and Sony's Instagram