2018衛生紙之亂!翻版的「蝴蝶效應」| ‘The war of tissues’ – A case of butterfly effect

TAIPEI (The China Post) – Have you ever run out of toilet paper? Well, one of the biggest news in Taiwan last year was a shortage of toilet paper amid pricing panic for which RT-MART was allegedly responsible. The incident started with a press release announcing that the price of tissue paper would be raised by up to 30 percent, starting in February 2018. A piece of news that received wide publicity from the media and created a real-life “butterfly effect.” 

你家衛生紙用完了嗎?去年最火熱的民生議題之一,就屬衛生紙漲價了!外界普遍將茅頭指向大潤發,原因是大潤發首先在去年2月時大張旗鼓的發新聞稿宣布衛生紙將調漲價格,且漲幅最高達30%,上演活生生的「蝴蝶效應」。

The butterfly effect is the idea that small things, such as a butterfly flapping its wings, can have a major impact on a complex system, like creating typhoons. Chaos literally started from after the release of the press release that quoted suppliers for announcing the drastic increase in prices of major tissue brands, between 10 percent and 30 percent. 

關於蝴蝶效應最常見的闡述應該是「一隻蝴蝶在巴西輕拍翅膀,可能導致一個月後德克薩斯州的一場龍捲風。」而整件衛生紙之亂的起源要從大潤發在去年2月的一篇新聞稿說起,他們在稿中透露接獲各主要紙漿大廠的通知,市面上多家「叫得出名字」的品牌衛生紙確定將調漲,漲幅高達10%至30%間。  

Two other hypermarket brands confirmed the information after the news went out. They said that they also received the aforesaid notice from their suppliers, but they thought that the timing and the actual amount of the increase were still under discussion. They never thought that RT-MART would let the cat out of the bag first. 

消息一出,另外2家量販店也證實,確實有收到通知,但實際漲幅與時間點都還在談,沒想到他們(指大潤發)會先公開。

Many people went to the hypermarkets to stock up tissue paper, just in case that the price will soon go up drastically, leaving the market racks all empty. (NOWnews)▲就怕衛生紙漲價,民眾紛紛搶買衛生紙,不少賣場貨架上空空如也。(圖/愛買提供)

As the message went out, however, consumption skyrocketed; customers went crazy and just rushed to the hypermarkets to grab and pile up tissue paper. Costco, A.mart, and Carrefour became the “collateral victims” of this situation. 

而消息一出許多民眾因為預期心理,紛紛瘋狂到賣場搶買、囤貨,好市多、愛買、家樂福都成為「受害」的賣場。 

Netizens later on nicknamed the incident: “The war of tissues” or even “The pacification of poos” which is homonymous in Chinese to a historically renowned revolt called “A Lushan Rebellion.” The Fair Trade Commission eventually investigated the case and slammed RT-MART, the alleged “chief culprit,” with an NT$3.5 million fine. 

被網友戲稱是「衛生紙之亂」、「安屎之亂」,也惹來公平會立案調查,甚至開罰「罪魁禍首」大潤發350萬元。