BORN in the library of University of Plymouth, England, the Malaysian Transformers Fandom Group (TransMY) was founded by Wong Chin Yam, 32, and his brother Mike, 29, in 2003 while Chin Yam was studying in England. At the time, exams had just ended and, trying to escape the summer heat, Chin Yam decided to start a Malaysian Transformers fan group online after he discovered that he couldn’t find one that catered to Malaysians.
“Though my brother and I had been collecting for more than 10 years, the event that further sparked my interest was when I joined a real Transformers convention called the Official Transformers Collector Club (OTFCC) which they held in Cheshunt, Hertfortshire, England for the first time,” recalls Chin Yam, an Internet marketing consultant.
The Malaysian collecting scene was really small back then, and most Transformers fans clustered around the US & UK Transformers sites and the small threads in Malaysian forums like Lowyat.net, Cari.com.my and Play.com.my (defunct now). Many were collecting obscurely, as the hobby of toy collecting among adults had yet to gain popularity.
Today, TransMY has 1,746 registered members. There are two chapters.
The one in Klang Valley meets every two to three months to have casual sessions but most members meet among themselves almost every weekend in shopping malls and specialty toy outlets where they have lunch and hunt for new hauls together.
The northern chapter in Penang is more sociable as they meet up as often as once a month.
A non-profit group, TransMY hosts raffles, auctions and dinners for official gatherings once every two years and explores the possibilities of organising competitions, charity events and workshops. Most of the club’s interactions are done via the official site https://transmy.com and Facebook http://www.facebook.com/transmy.