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Negativity on Taiwan
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Angel.Ro



Joined: 09 May 2015
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2016 8:13 pm    Post subject: Negativity on Taiwan Reply with quote

I don't understand why these boards seem so down on Taiwan?

I'm looking at Taiwan jobs, and there are numerous jobs advertised that pay relatively well, while cost of living seems to be reasonable as well.

I'm not on the ground in Taiwan, but from the research that I've done, it seems like the negative sentiment on these boards is not warranted.
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romanworld



Joined: 27 May 2008
Posts: 388

PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2016 3:30 am    Post subject: Re: Negativity on Taiwan Reply with quote

Angel.Ro wrote:
I don't understand why these boards seem so down on Taiwan?

I'm looking at Taiwan jobs, and there are numerous jobs advertised that pay relatively well, while cost of living seems to be reasonable as well.

I'm not on the ground in Taiwan, but from the research that I've done, it seems like the negative sentiment on these boards is not warranted.


Maybe if you were "on the ground" you'd understand a little better.
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Angel.Ro



Joined: 09 May 2015
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2016 4:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Perhaps. I can only go by what I'm seeing and there doesn't seem to be any shortage of jobs to apply to.
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romanworld



Joined: 27 May 2008
Posts: 388

PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Angel.Ro wrote:
Perhaps. I can only go by what I'm seeing and there doesn't seem to be any shortage of jobs to apply to.


OK so go ahead and apply for one of these jobs, get the job, start working, and then tell us about your experiences. All else is conjecture.
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BruceLeeWannaBe



Joined: 12 Jun 2012
Posts: 186

PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2016 6:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You haven't been to Taiwan yet? I'm not sure if you lived in Asia before, but assuming you haven't I am going to explain to you some of the most important things every foreigner should be told about before they come. In my opinion, if you or any foreigner doesn't know the thing I am about to share with you now then you are not ready for this part of the world. In fact, many people including myself had to learn certain things the hard way.

Listen. There are good things about Taiwan and other parts of Asia. If you do come, I hope you have a great time during the time you are here.

But....

Listen carefully. You must understand your social compromises before you come.

As a foreigner in any asian country, you will never truly belong. In Taiwan, Japan, and Thailand you can legally become a citizen. Bit even if you do, socially you will always be an outcast of society and the society will never truly accept you.

You may make the odd friend here and there, and I will be honest. There are some great locals. However it's hard to distinguish between your true friends and those who are keeping you at arms length. You will find the odd person may be friendly and might even invite you out to dinner or tea. Often times once they go out with you once they will never see you again. If they do it's extremely limited. Any vast undercurrent of activity there is, you will not be a part of. You may be able to sort of be a part of it, but that social berlin wall will always be there between you and the rest of society. No matter how much you immerse into the culture.

No matter how open minded you are. No matter how culturally sensitive you are or respectful you are. It may make things a bit easier for you, but the negative discrimination will always be there. Very important you understand this one key fact alone before you come.

Example. When two locals are in a fist fight, nobody else will care. But if it's a foreigner and a local, many people will jump in and they will side with whoever the local is. The local gives his side of the story and that's all they need. No verification needed. So any conflict you are in with a local, whether it's a fight, or a shouting arguement. As a foreigner, when someone causes you grief, you will always lose. Most of the time anyway.

As a foreigner you will always be viewed upon with suspicion. In your neighborhood or any other place in your city that you go to very often. People watch you. The way you walk, everything. When you do even the slightest thing wrong, no matter how trivial. They will share it with everyone they know. Just kicking an empty coke bottle could be enough to make you the top story of the day. Also, if anything you do gets reported to the media, it will make front line news all over whichever country you are in.

I intend this to be only a civil post and I am only stating the most important things every foreigner needs to know. You cannot stand up for yourself when you are in this part of the world. The discrimination and social isolation will always be there. You can't avoid it.

Yes you will have some good times. Yes you will meet some great people. You kight even come off to a very good start when you first arrive. But I hope you have really paid attention to everything I said. Because most people who make youtube videos giving advice to those who haven't been to asia before will almost never discuss the issue of racial discrimination and how it will effect you.

I believe everything I described are the most important things anyone who is going to Asia for their first time should know. Because everything discussed just now are what is going to effect your life the most.
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Jmbf



Joined: 29 Jun 2014
Posts: 660

PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2016 8:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@BruceLeeWannaBe. I'm sorry to hear about your experience. However I don't think you can categorise your experience as typical. Yes, some foreign workers in Asia will experience 'cultural separation'. Others will fulfil their contract and leave before any issues arise. And yet others will integrate into society (marrying locals, having kids, etc etc). There are too many factors at play here to make an accurate general statement. As with all things, YMMV.
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BruceLeeWannaBe



Joined: 12 Jun 2012
Posts: 186

PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2016 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jmbf wrote:
@BruceLeeWannaBe. I'm sorry to hear about your experience. However I don't think you can categorise your experience as typical. Yes, some foreign workers in Asia will experience 'cultural separation'. Others will fulfil their contract and leave before any issues arise. And yet others will integrate into society (marrying locals, having kids, etc etc). There are too many factors at play here to make an accurate general statement. As with all things, YMMV.


First off, I acknowledge this is a Taiwan forum and my story below is what I went through living in China. The reason I insist on putting my story here as part of this conversation is because I feel that the experiences I had are what foreigners anywhere in Asia are culnerable to. Including Taiwan. So in short, what happened to me in China can and does IMO happen to foreigners in Taiwan as well.

Jmbf I understand where you are coming from. Like I said. You will have good times abroad. People leave their contracts after a year before issues arise. True. I felt like I left my first contract before issues came up. Let me briefly share my story. I spoke with other foreigners who have been in China a long time. Those who made videos for youtube describing things foreigners should know before they come. I had to ask them specifically in the comment section if they experienced certain things and they all said yes. One even said that any foreigner in China ling term will experience this. Of course I would mention that they should've mentioned this in their video.

Because of how passive the discrimination is, alot of us don't feel it. Locals really know how to save face. For me, when I first came everything came off to a really good start. And I mean almost everything. Didn't take me long to find a girlfriend or even meet a couple other good people for that matter. I was a young 23 year old in China for my first time. I remember meeting the odd couple people which alone were worth the time spent there. During my first year, I did have the odd misfortunes with the odd person, but never did I ever find myself accusing anyone of discriminating against me because I am a foreigner. Most people seemed friendly enough I didn't think there was much anti foreigner resentment at all. I knew I would never be chinese, but I didn't think that mattered. Most my frusterations were just with the school I worked at. Sure there were times when I was lonely and found it hard to meet and connect with people. I didn't think my skin color had anything to do with it. I just assumed there was something, some cultural secret I still just don't know.

After my first year I went back home for a bit. Seeing the odd chinese in my own country I felt like I could identify with them as if they were my own people. Like I was part of them. As if China was my second home. I eventually did go back for a second and third year. My recruiter Sunny's English Club sent me to a remote area with no foreigners at all. For the first two months anyway. I couldn't stand it. Nobody wanted anything to do with me. But because my first year came off to a good start, I was convinced I could make things work. I met another chinese teacher where I worked. She took me out to dinner and a ktv one night. Went well and after that night she wanted nothing to do with me ever again. I was nrought back to Chengdu after that and I was working there. Some good people came and gone over the brief time I was there. Later I spent time in other parts of Sichuan and I had situations where I'd meet someone nice and they'd drop off the face of the planet. Or I'd meet a nice girl now and again then some local guy would interfere somehow. Those who were friendly and nice would mostly keep me at arms length. My third year wasn't much different.

I concluded as a foreigner you should be living in a city saturated with foreigners. Things won't be as bad in terms of social isolation. I had a nice girlfriend at the time. But in parts of sichuan outside Chengdu, if I was seen with a girl people would always look at her like she comitted a crime or something like that. Yet this one other girl and her brother I knew were excellent people and they kept in contact with me for a long time. I miss those two alot.

During my fourth year, I was in Hangzhou. Great city. But it was during that year when I learned this one fact. If you get into a fist fight with one local (not that it would be my first choice anyway), other locals will blindly assume the fault is yours and they will stand up for whoever the local person is. I asked a Taiwanese friend about that and he said "yes. You know why? Because you are a foreigner!!!". He really exaggerated the word foreigner. That's when every single misfortune that I had to share during my second and third year literally flashed before me. Also, the way my contract during my fourth year started was when I came on a tourist visa. We were supposed to,process a,proper working visa after I arrived. They sent my passport away and without my knowledge got me a student visa issued in a province I never been to. I tried getting a tourist visa when my student visa expired and when I went to Hong Kong to do it, they didn't accept my application because I lacked proof that I was actually a student. Since then I haven't been back to China. This was when I learned you don't have any legal rights. If your employer does something wrong with your visa, you alone are held responsible. Knowing I may not ever be able to go back is hard. There are the odd people I really do miss.

I read some online blog (can't remember what the link was) that explained the ten most important things you must know before you come and one of the things was that you will never truly belong. That asians are proud and they will never adopt you as one of their own. You will always be an outsider. And for me, I totally agreed with that just from my own experiences. I felt like an unwanted outcast at times.

Actually, one thing about Taiwan that I do believe is that the island itself tends to be somewhat more foreigner friendly in some subtle ways. Anyone reading this who hasn't been to asia before. If you come, do enjoy yourself. But make sure you are in a city saturated with foreigners. People are at least slightly more used to us there.
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Chroniclesoffreedom



Joined: 13 Jan 2015
Posts: 261

PostPosted: Sat Jun 04, 2016 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently got to Taiwan. People seem friendly. Though some people seem to kinda laugh at me at times for no reason. Jmbf, are there places in Taiwan where I could purchase a life like Asian silicone mask?
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JZer



Joined: 16 Jan 2005
Posts: 3896
Location: Pittsburgh

PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Negativity on Taiwan Reply with quote

Angel.Ro wrote:
I don't understand why these boards seem so down on Taiwan?

I'm looking at Taiwan jobs, and there are numerous jobs advertised that pay relatively well, while cost of living seems to be reasonable as well.

I'm not on the ground in Taiwan, but from the research that I've done, it seems like the negative sentiment on these boards is not warranted.


In Taiwan you earn 60,000 NT. However, you might have to travel all around Taipei to do so.
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JZer



Joined: 16 Jan 2005
Posts: 3896
Location: Pittsburgh

PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 7:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Negativity on Taiwan Reply with quote

Angel.Ro wrote:
I don't understand why these boards seem so down on Taiwan?

I'm looking at Taiwan jobs, and there are numerous jobs advertised that pay relatively well, while cost of living seems to be reasonable as well.

I'm not on the ground in Taiwan, but from the research that I've done, it seems like the negative sentiment on these boards is not warranted.


I lived in Taipei from 2007-2011. Moreover, I have lived in Europe and the United States.

I enjoyed my experience in Taiwan, and the country can be great if you are under 30 and seeking an adventure. It can also be a lot of fun for those suffering from a mid-life crises. However, unless you were sent to Taiwan to represent the home office in your country, opportunities in Taiwan are rather limited.

After, living in Asia from 2005 to 2011, I returned to the United States and work for the Federal Government. There are a lot more opportunities back home.

Overall, living in Taiwan can be fun and exciting. Plus, who doesn't enjoy a cute Taiwanese girlfriend. Taiwan is a great escape from real life.
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Shakey



Joined: 29 Aug 2014
Posts: 199

PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2016 3:42 am    Post subject: Re: Negativity on Taiwan Reply with quote

JZer wrote:
After, living in Asia from 2005 to 2011, I returned to the United States and work for the Federal Government. There are a lot more opportunities back home.


Your applications with the CIA or FBI finally went through, eh? Maybe you can weasel your way back here with the feds
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Spelunker



Joined: 03 Nov 2013
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2016 7:47 am    Post subject: re: fbi Reply with quote

Quote:
I returned to the United States and work for the Federal Government


I can only assume you are an asian american or have superior mandarin skills then?
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twowheel



Joined: 03 Jul 2015
Posts: 640

PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2016 7:54 am    Post subject: civil service Reply with quote

Spelunker wrote:
Quote:
I returned to the United States and work for the Federal Government


I can only assume you are an asian american or have superior mandarin skills then?


Not necessarily FBI or CIA or needing any Mandarin skills at all, perhaps none of the above--naturally, the U.S. Federal Government is a large body with lots of work for lots of people in lots of places in lots of fields with lots of da skeeellz...the good 'ole civil service.

For example, I have a family member who works for a district office of the Environmental Protection Agency, and thus, works for the Federal Government.

twowheel
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Spelunker



Joined: 03 Nov 2013
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 2:44 pm    Post subject: re: hmmmm Reply with quote

Fair enough, interesting career change
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twowheel



Joined: 03 Jul 2015
Posts: 640

PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2016 3:45 pm    Post subject: Re: re: hmmmm Reply with quote

Spelunker wrote:
Fair enough, interesting career change


Could be, although I guess it would end up being just like any other dull desk job back home, well, I guess with a pension and health insurance.

I'm good with being abroad for now. This life suits me better.

twowheel


Last edited by twowheel on Wed Jul 27, 2016 9:23 am; edited 1 time in total
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