Archive for the ‘Blogging and Democracy’ Category

 

 

[Zorro]              :  Are you a registered Voter?

Cheryl                : Nah, I’m not really into all that. It’s not like it makes a difference anyway!

Bernard             : Well, then you don’t have a say in anything that happens in the country. So don’t complaint.

Cheryl               : Isn’t that my right as a citizen, to say something, especially if it is wrong?

 

                           ” My dear, voting is a privilege. It gives you a voice. It gives you the power to make a difference.

                              Whether you decide to use that privilege or give it up, is up to you. But don’t you dare say anything, if you don’t

                             contribute  because you have revoked your right by not voting.”- Bernard of Zorro Unmasked]

 

* my conversation with Bernard@Zorro, a very nice old man, I met during my days as an active blogger at National Press Club. Bernard has since passed on [ 2014], but he has always left a lasting impression on this once young lady.

My journey as a researcher led me to my journey as a blogger. I became more of a blogger than a researcher by the time I completed my masters in early 2009. I was a true-blood blogger, my spirit was full of fire- I wanted to make a difference, I had learn so much in my journey as a blogger. This was the time I met the likes of Haris Ibrahim, Malik Imitiaz, SK Thew, Walski, Marina Mahatir, Anura Bird, Bernard@Zorro that opened my eyes to the importance of of making a difference of having a voice.

Does it matter? Why? Let me tell you why.

Why you should RECLAIM your Rights?

  • You can make a differenceUSE your VOTE! Why let someone else decide for you? You have a voice- that is your vote.
  • It’s a privilege. Vote on behalf that those who can’t. Many minorities and under-represented groups do not have a right to vote around the world. Did you know that women fought for the right to vote?
  • Feel underrepresented? REPRESENT! Are you one of those passionate Facebook or Twitter warriors that has a lot to say about what the government should and shouldn’t do? Do you feel that they could do better? Do you feel your state does not get what it needs:?
  • $$$$$/ RM Each vote equals money. YOU DECIDE THE CAUSE, it is your Money that fuels the state. Don’t you care where your money goes? Money that your MP [Member of Parliament] will fuel to causes he thinks is good, is needed and necessary. You think there is a need for more Youth Education? Local Content? Child Abuse?
  • CANCEL out someones Vote. Your decision to vote might cancel out someone else’s vote. Your vote could be the decider, of whether that corrupt person continues to yield power in your state. Also it balances the votes out, so at least those in power will feel the pressure to WORK and not laze around. Majority votes make it too safe, makes the winner feel too much pride that they forget, they serve the nation.
  • Be a True Malaysian. Have a VOICE! Yes ,exercise your participation as a citizen. Don’t call yourself a citizen, for without this vote, you have no voice. Want to have a voice? VOTE!
  • Want stability? A prosperous economy? VOTE! Want someone who talks sense, knows what he is doing with the country’s billions? Want someone who not only has a background in Finance  but an expert in it, running the Finance ministry? Put him or her there! How many of your Ministers know anything about their Ministry?
  • Want to be Educated? VOTE! Wonder why English keeps failing among our ministers, our graduates? Who makes those policies? Who do you want sitting in those seat deciding the fate of our future? Without knowledge, our country will perish.  Do you really want to leave our education system in the hands of those who know nothing? You enjoy policies changing every 5 years at the whim and fancy? English in Science, Malay in Science [Recall being part of this system?]
  • Want a Job/ starting a business, based on how awesome you are? You decide policies on tenders [who gets them], diversity in jobs not based on race/religion, job opportunities etc
  • Unhappy with companies polluting our rivers? Getting rid of our beautiful Penang hills?  Constant water cuts or electricity? You have a choice, don’t let them. It’s your backyard, your land, your rivers, your home. Put those who know what they are doing in place. VOTE!

At the end of the day, it is your choice whether to vote or not. But as a very wise old man told me once,

   “Voting is a PRIVILEGE. You have the power to make a difference, it just whether you want to make a difference or just rant”.

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I was rather moved by the excellent write up by Dr.Mus on patriotism in Malaysia.Through the written word he singled out various acts of patriotism that clearly displayed acts of love for the country, we call home, despite it being called everything but love for the country.

But can you really blame them?

We are often blinded by the things we do not want to see, acknowledge or believe in. In their case, they do not want to acknowledge that Malaysian despite their color or creed, love their country and care enough to want to see change, to want to question, to want to make it better.

As Dr.Mus explains very eloquently, patriotism comes in many shapes and sizes ..It is most definitely not confined to the 1Malaysia formula that is constantly stuffed down our throats through various mediums. It is bigger than that, it is bigger than all of us.

It not about kawtow-ing to the government and following everything they say.Now, that is not love nor patriotism..that’s obedience or the act of conforming.

I’m talking about that intense desire, care, sense of belonging that makes the best of us still remain in Malaysia when we could have easily migrated.

Many say, if you do not like what you see, why not you just leave! If you do love for your country, I’d say stay and fight to see it better. Isn’t that what you’d do for a person you love?

Voting is also another act of love for the country. Too see it being governed well, for it to be fair, for it to have a chance in the world… I never knew this until most recently..Every vote counts.

“If you don’t start making a change through at least voting, do not sit here and tell me even for a moment that you desire change or that you have love for this country”. Action speak louder than words! “

Someone very wise told me that a couple of years ago when I was doing my research on the blogosphere. I ended up voting because for the first time, cause I knew that the act of voting was an act of love for my country as I wanted to see change. I was not happy with what I saw but does that make me love my country less hell no. Yes, I do possibly on a daily basis criticize a lot of decisions or actions taken by the administration but does that lessen my love for the country? Hell no!

It’s simply because I care enough that I say anything at all! Lest we forget, we are all Malaysians, for better or for worse. I’ll be there. We are not on the opposing side, we are not the enemies, we are just citizens of this beautiful land we call Malaysia!

Read here for Dr.Mus take on “this thing called love for Malaysia” at http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/opinion/article/this-thing-called-love-for-malaysia/.

P.s: Read this poem below by Rudyard Kipling;

The tumult and the shouting dies;
The Captains and the Kings depart:
Still stands Thine ancient sacrifice,
An humble and a contrite heart.
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget lest we forget!

Far-called, our navies melt away;
On dune and headland sinks the fire:
Lo, all our pomp of yesterday
Is one with Nineveh and Tyre!
Judge of the Nations, spare us yet,
Lest we forget lest we forget!

If, drunk with sight of power, we loose
Wild tongues that have not Thee in awe,
Such boastings as the Gentiles use,
Or lesser breeds without the Law
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget lest we forget!

For heathen heart that puts her trust
In reeking tube and iron shard,
All valiant dust that builds on dust,
And guarding, calls not Thee to guard,
For frantic boast and foolish word
Thy mercy on Thy People, Lord!

Malaysiakini reports that Syed Azidi aka Kickdefella was arrested in Kota Baru today.

According to Haris, the arrest had some relation to something seditious…In relation to bloggers being picked up, I heard that another blogger-PENARIK BECA has been arrested (can’t confirm the validity of this claim just yet)

There are picking up bloggers one by one..what are we going to do about it? Or are we going to wait for our turns in silence?

You decide…

Something is definitely up…scheming..some big time scheming is going on!

“By now, what Screenshots mentioned yesterday about RPK’s Malaysia Today being blocked by TM Net has turned out to be something more sinister.” Jeff Ooi

Sinister alright… What is happening? Well in my opinion they have run out of options. Options to retaliate. The tried the defaming, insulting….they tried to blame the Internet for all the wrongs, all the mishaps of human errors..they basically tried to use the Internet..blogs,websites alike to take the blame for irresponsible behavior of certain parties. Did they succeed?

Hell no! But instead, the General elections saw bloggers (yes those who had been said to be the root of all evil, all things impure….you get my drift?) taking over..in regard to distribution of information, in fact bloggers even made parliament! Then they thought hmm perhaps we should be nice to them, learn the trade from them. Worship it as it won them the election and it will give them a chance to gain back their dignity and what better way….then the Internet. So they started off praising blogs, saying how those without blogs should hold certain positions. I was like dumbfounded..what the hell one minute you’re a hater the next a lover? Ehem…ehem..What’s next?

Of course that took a turn……and it went on and on the roller coaster….until i believe they just can’t take it no more..they couldn’t beat us…they tried so they joined us..yet it still didn’t work in their favor. They tried to take power through threats, intimidation in the beginning which didn’t work, then they tried becoming one of us yet it didn’t work so what’s the last best option for their little minds? Simply to censor for that is the easiest way….to curb something they can’t control. They tried their best to behave like adults but a mask can only hold for a certain extent (its like a first date, you can’t be as flawless as your first date, it tends to show your true colors, that little temper your have perhaps, your annoying habit etc)

So here we are..I guess we all knew that the time would come..that they would resort to censoring and so they have now with Malaysia Today.

“We know by now the reason for Malaysia Today being unaccessible to TMnet subscribers since Tuesday evening is actually a result of Internet censorship. Malaysia Today is inaccessible to Malaysia readers because the website is placed in what is known technically as ‘DNS blackhole list’. [ SEE EVIDENCE HERE ]” Jeff Ooi

http://www.jeffooi.com/

Today DNS blackhole list? What lies tomorrow? What was the rationale behind this move by the MCMC? Aren’t they an independent body? Read Nuraina’s thoughts on MCMC Biggest Mistake;

http://nursamad.blogspot.com/2008/08/big-mistake-mcmc.html

Can they really stop the flow of the information now? Now that society is so hyped? Now that people are yearning for the truth? Now that people want and know their rights? Can censorship stop the urge, the passion of the people? The passion for change?

Most importantly how will the move affect Malaysia? Go to rockybru.blogspot.com for Rocky’s insight into how this will possible impact how Malaysia is view by the world especially in regards to our investors. Bill of Guarantees….hahha.What a joke..joke of the century…oh well..

We will just have to wait and see. But know that the battle is not over. Bloggers will not fall off the face of the earth….they will remain and continue stronger as ever. Don’t be mistaken, bloggers have a cause and no amount of censorship can stifle their passion. After all blogs have taken to the streets….

Anyway for those of you who are trying to access Malaysia Today, please go to;

Access RPK and Malaysia Today through http://mt.harapanmalaysia.com/2008

Cited as a landmark case in the Malaysian blogosphere as it has been the first case in the history of the sphere to be handed such a judgment, time will only tell how this case will prove crucial for future cases dealing with the blogosphere in the future. I shall not go into the details of the suit but just briefly explain what the judgment is about;

The High court of Kedah ruled in favor of Nordin Kardi, the VC of UUM amounting to a sum of RM2 million to be paid to him while another RM2 million to be paid to UUM. The decision could be considered as a default one as RPK lawyers were not present to defend the case of defamation whereby RPK was supposedly guilty of publishing a defamatory article that tarnished MR.Datuk’s reputation and UUM. RPK ignored it and despite the judgment call of the high court, RPK views remains the same, refusing to budge from his stand. He still defies to pay RM4 million and Nordin Kardi has threatened that he will follow suit although he knows RPK probably can’t afford to pay (no brainer?stupidity? You call it!

I wonder what this says about defamation cases and the blogosphere. Some might argue that defamation is defamation be it online or off line. Some might argue facts are facts and thus cannot be considered defamatory.  Whatever the case, this particular suit will definitely contextualize what bloggers can expect in the future especially with the refreshing new look of the Information Minister towards blogs. Will the promise to be more friendly phase out with the steam of the elections? Will it be grounds for more cases to come? Will it be a deterrent for bloggers to continue being as bold and outspoken about the government or its functionaries? Or will this issue just boil over as many other issues have. The only difference this time is in a way a case has been won over a blogger, the ramification of it is yet to be felt.

Only time will tell.

barisanrakyat.jpg

Well its election time once again…

Miles and miles of crap fills the roads once again, no offense to those campaigning but I seriously do hate the tons and tons of posters plastered all about in every nook and corner very distastefully most of the time. With hardly any character it is just thrown all over the place where in this case more means quality doesn’t apply. From my observation, most of these posters belong to either Barisan Nasional or Parti Keadilan while the rest namely, PAS and DAP trail slowly behind in “who has the most faces plastered on the streets”.

Ok, fine I’m done with dissing the horrid posters. Sorry again for all the negativity especially after so long. So with all that has been going on for the last year or so I think we should pretty much have an idea of what and who we want representing our government don’t we? Well you should! But then again, this is not the first time people have whined about how things are bad or not good enough but still ended up putting themselves in the same position year after year, or shall I say election after election.

So what choices do we have laid out for us? During election time, all sorts of promises will definitely be laid out be it by the Barisan Nasional or the opposition parties. It will promise you all sorts of things but whether it will be accomplished within the given 5 years is really doubtful especially as we have noticed through the former government of ours(BN). Should things be different with the opposition parties? I hope so. But I for one can’t say for sure. Will the BN lose to the opposition this time around with the many scandals surrounding the current government? I hardly think so! BN is still quite strong and they still have a stronghold in rural areas. Them winning more than 5 seats even before the race has begun says a lot~ So why should you put your trust with the opposition party when you can’t say for sure whether they would be any better. Simply because we’ve tried BN many a time, continuously but to no avail. Nothing much has changed in the last 50 years in terms of race relations especially.Furthermore for any government to function effectively there is need for strong opposition, with only 20 or less people from the opposition standing in parliament its pretty much only a whisper that doesn’t serve the purpose of check and balance as it should. With mainstream media controlled by these same people it will definitely be hard for those who do not have access to the Internet to get a whiff of what has truly occurred in many situations in the country. Nevertheless I’m confident that those who have informed choices will make the right decision in bringing change in Malaysia. So why not for a change we vote the opposition parties? Why not we give them some sort of leverage so that BN doesn’t have total control to amend and change laws,judges and others as they feel like it. Why not?

Ultimately the decision is up to you. But think as you make your decision really carefully. What do you want as a Malaysian?What do you hope for Malaysia?What kind of future do you want for your children? As each of you drive back to your respective places to vote, think long and hard not because I told you to but because you know that, the single tick you make on that fateful day will decide what Malaysia becomes in the future!

I’ve made my choice. Have you?

With that, I rest my case.

According to<“Malaysiakini”>, virtual reality has created a real-time headache for Umno Youth chief Hishammuddin Hussein, who pointed out the potential harm that Internet users could cause the nation.Like duh!!! Well of course it will cause you a headache my dear friend! Because since the introduction of the Internet in Malaysia, no one can save you from your silly comments or racially slanting views. Back in the day when only media such as the radio, newspapers and TV existed, you could do damage control, censor the unnecessarily comments you’ve made and work on polishing what you said to suit the mould of being a rational, fair, level-headed leaders to the masses. But those days have gone and now you have to bear the consequences of every word uttered and actions taken for we all are watching you like a hawk! But rather than us causing harm to the nation, we are only serving as instruments to inform the public of the ridiculous masking of whom you truly are and stand for!

If according to you critics= Hypocrites well what’s they left to say? It only implies that you desire free reign over whatever you say or do just on the pretext that you are a leader in the country. But that isn’t how it works! You are serving the “rakyat” and you have to serve the “rakyat” needs rather than your own! Which part of that don’t you comprehend? That’s why when Malaysia claims to be a democracy it has to prescribe to what being a democracy is all about, it is not just about appearing to be democratic(although I think even that part of it no longer exists) but actually practicing what you preach! If it wasn’t for critics they would be no improvement, they would be no such as thing as the concept of fourth or five estate as everyone would do as they liked! Why bother no one is watching….

To UMNO YOUTH CHIEF comment on not exploiting the Internet, I’d say

STOP SUPRESSING THE INTERET’s ABILITY TO PORTRAY AND EXPOSE THE TRUTH!

So, if your worried about the Internet, perhaps you should be careful of what you say and do in the future for the “rakyat”is watching you! We will not keep quiet and lay low if our leaders persist mistreating the “rakyat” in any manner so do your part as a leader and do not stray from the path you have sworn to uphold leaders of Malaysia! The “rakyat” is the process of awakening……

<“Malaysiakini”> reported today that after almost 47 days after his second coronary bypass operation done in early September, our former prime minister was finally allowed to go home and recuperate in his own environment. The days and months surrounding his operation has not been as easy one for his family or the people of Malaysia who waited patiently as he went through his operation and watched his progress slowly but surely. His daughter, Marina has been diligent and kind in reporting to the masses online about her dad’s progress throughout the ordeal. From snapshots of the great man, pictures or drawings of well-wishers and simple commentaries of what Dr M ate or how much he has walked, <“Marina”>did a great job in alerting the public on her dad’s well being. I believe that blogs have truly introduced something really new to the world, especially to Malaysia.

For the first time, we didn’t really have to wonder if all the reports we actually true. Perhaps the PR person at IJN was writing reports which were accurate no doubt but we might not feel the same credibility we felt as we read <“Marina”> blog. It was like a personal insight into what was happening to Dr.M. It truly makes you feel like part of the big family, the fact that Marina took the trouble to update her blog practically every day with news of her dad is amazing. Believe me, blogging everyday and updating is not an easy task especially if you have other responsibilities like taking care of your kids,your home, your job..the list goes on. Marina’s blog also ensured that people knew what was happening and rumors didn’t fly loose although in the beginning they were some nasty rumors that hurt the family so the existence of this postings kept the fire burning and people stop guessing but really knowing what was up!

Most importantly I feel that <“Marina”>blog has achieved so much since she started blogging about her dad in early September. Firstly, for once the mainstream media are actually quoting and using pictures from a blog despite earlier claims on how unreliable blogs are, bloggers being liars, not credible enough to be quoted, especially the part about how bloggers are mostly women and unemployed!!! But this time around when the mainstream media started quoting from Marina’s blog it was amazing, it was as though the mainstream media had taken a fresh look at the potential of blogs and their credibility as a source of news. A one-up for bloggers throughout the country!

Secondly, Marina blogging about her dad introduced us to Dr. M not so much as the former Prime Minister but as an ordinary man…a father….a grandfather…a husband…..The words that she used, the pictures that she displayed brought us closer to get to know the man behind the news reports on the mainstream media, the man behind this huge post and leading in the country…. It brought us all much closer to who Dr.M was inside……(esp for those of us who do not know Dr.M personally!) It guess to a certain extent it made us realize that Dr.M was just like anyone of us, although some of us might feel like he is way up there and impossible to reach, some sort of a celebrity I’d say. But blogging has showed us that Dr. M is truly reachable, as we got to know him through Marina’s postings. I’d sure love to see Dr.M blogging once he gets back on his feet, it be great to see how a great mind thinks. I guess I also feel that when I see great academics and philosopher’s writing their own blogs, you kindda feel so amazed that you can experience first hand what they feel and think rather than read it in some book alone or conference, news reports etc.

As Marina said, I hope that people who have started reading her blog will continue to do so and will cultivate an interest to read more blogs and perhaps blogs themselves. Blogging is time consuming no doubt,but worth every minute of it. It is not easy to continuously update your blog diligently but it is a task worthwhile. Well, that’s all for now. Need to finish my assignment and start studying!!! In the meanwhile do check out <“Marina”> for more updated information on her dad, Malaysiakini also has a report on him.

Finally it has materialized..thanks to the great efforts of the organizing team most of which are working hard from the great city of Kuala Lumpur with the help of some individuals from the Pearl of the Orient..The word is that everything is in gear and we are just waiting for the day to arrive, for us to welcome Bangsa Malaysia to  its first gathering at the great island of Penang. So what are you waiting for? Take a trip down from the city, come join us at the gathering and while your at it you can enjoy the beauty, culture, food that makes Penang the island it is….What better time than now to make a trip to the North in gathering fellow Malaysia together in the name of unity as demonstrated first in Kuala Lumpur at the Blog House. For those in Penang, get ya self there ok, I shan’t say more! After all everywhere in Penang is but a stone throw away…

Here is the details of the event;

What? Malam Bangsa Malaysia

Kat Mane? Penang lah mane lagik!!! Dewan Sri Pinang P,Pinang

Masa? 8.00pm

Bila? 3 November 2007

A charge of only RM10 will be required from all of lovely participants/attendees of the event to tie up a few loose ends in making the event successful. Believe me, the Dewan Sri Pinang is a great place to have any event, barely few minutes away from the Dewan is the great Esplanade where many gather to enjoy the breeze and watch the seas, close by is Fort Cornwallis, a historical landmark in Georgetown. I guess I need not mention about the wonders of Penang food do I?

*those not from around Penang can always email me, earlier for directions, always ready to help!

The event can only accommodate 200 people and attendance is by invitation.

So what will be going down during this event?

‘One People, One Nation’ – 5pm (registration will commence at 4.30pm)
Open to all who are registered to attend the get-together later that night.

Let’s see who will grace the event to give us their thoughts, aspirations and insights?

Speakers for the forum are :

1. Dato Lim Chong Keat (pending confirmation)

2. Khoo Kay Peng (independent political analyst)

3. Malik Imtiaz Sarwaralso spoke at our last Bangsa Malaysia gathering

4. Haris Ibrahim- also spoke at our last Bangsa Malaysia gathering

If you want to have a glimpse of what kindda event it is and what you can expect. Do read on about our last event at Kuala Lumpur here and here or <“Bangsa Malaysia Gathering”>


HOW DO YOU GET AN INVITATION?

Simple…..but always keep in mind only asks if you can confirm your attendance but seats are limited!

If that’s clarified and you are certain then email : bangsamalaysiapenang@gmail.com

Please provide the following details :

1. Name (as per IC) and IC number

2. Contact number

3. A little bit about yourself ( where you’re from, what you do ). Also tell us what your feelings are about the last fifty years of independence and what your hopes are for the coming fifty years. Also, share your thoughts on what you think needs to be done to make the aspiration of one people, one nation a reality in Malaysia.

All e-mails will be replied.

All particulars furnished will be treated with utmost confidence.

Do your bit and spread this event to bloggers, non-bloggers, students, uncles, aunties, activists, NGOs and any Malaysian!

As most of my readers already know, I recently attended the Forum on Blogs and Digital Democracy in Kuala Lumpur recently at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club( KLGCC). Upon reaching Pudu, a friend picked me up from the bus station, we had a drink and then I was off to the forum. I reached rather early I guess, people will still coming in slowly. The buka puasa session had just began as I walked into the room. Was warmly greeted by Tony, Anu and who can forget sweet Bernard. Haris was no where to be seen, I was rather disappointed as I was looking forward to seeing him. Anyway, I was allocated a place at one of the tables located at the far right of the hall with Howsy, Rikey and some others I did not know. Later on I realize some of them who were siting at my table were journalist from Malaysiakini, if I’m not mistaken Zan Azlee was also at my table.

The event started soon after…. What was visible on the screen of the LCD was “Participatory Media, Participatory Democracy’ such phrases gave me flash backs of my times at uni with all those phrases being often mentioned in the course of my studies. The forum was moderated by Jeff, among the speakers invited to grace the event was;

1. David Sasaki, Head of Global Voices Outreach ( Rising Voices ) — an off-shoot project of a project initiated at Berkman

Center for Internet & Society, Harvard Law School

2. A.Kadir Jasin of <“The Scribe A.Kadir Jasin”>

3. Ahiruddin Attan of <“Rockybru”>

Among those who attended the event were representatives from NGOs, alternative media, legal professionals, journalist, researcher(probably I was the only one~)… Those whom I spotted at the event were Howsy, Rikey, Zorro-Unmasked, Galdariel, Tony Pua, Tony Yew, Nat Tan, Li Tsin, Walski69, SK, Nuraina Samad and TV Smith.

The function of All-Blog was briefly explained;

1. Engage + Embrace those ignorant

2. Protect bloggers- through linking of legal help-lawyers

Although not much was explained further I think I get the drift of what All-Blogs is all about but I guess it goes further. They also serve to teach bloggers and non-blogger what it is to blog, how to blog responsibly, importance of blogging for democracy, its link to unity etc

A brief explanation was given on what Global Voices Online (GVO) entailed… From the gist of what was said, I gather that it is basically “citizen journalism” virtually. Jeff also mentioned some activities of bloggers in the region of Asia namely in Cambodia( ISP served as main sponsors for a blogger event- How cool is that?) and Indonesia(Pesta Blogger is to be held and their sponsors are Microsof/Nokia- event to be officiated by the ICT Minister-fancy that happening in Malaysia eh???)

Jeff introduced the panel of speakers and then gave the honor of breaking the ice to Rocky to relate his experience on the issue on his part. I assumed that he would go into detail about the case but I presume that he isn’t able to as the case isn’t over yet thus it find bind him legally from commenting on the case. But instead of relating his experience in that sense, he gave the audience something even better! He related to the audiences his entry point into blogging, what made him a journo-blogger!

Rocky;

Started off in the field of journalism in 1984 as an Intern in Business Times

– Started blogging in 2006

– Irony of being sued as a blogger by journalist( as Rocky was formerly an editor with a local daily)

Rocky related how he entered into the world of blogging. Relating his first experience as hear-say from fellow journalist whom informed him that a blog(Screenshots@Jeff Ooi-how ironic eh they are good buddies now!) was insulting/commenting on Malay Mail and later attacking him personally in an entry on Rocky in 2003 soon after.Rocky then the editor of Malay Mail explained how he felt intense pressure as he could not catch up as he could only respond weekly in his Sunday Times Column, while Jeff was having a field day each day! He felt as though he could not engage with bloggers as they were in real time! Getting mixed reactions with some advising him to ignore, retaliate by suing etc he decided to take it a step further! He started to blog….and from then on there was no looking back.

One very important aspect that Rocky spoke on was about the relationship that lies between bloggers and journalist. He related on how it was so important for this two roles to have peace. He said fear did not lie only within bloggers but with journalist too. All-Blogs could possible bridge the gap that existed between this two, whom had so much similarities rather than differences yet we often looked at the relationship very pessimistically. SoPo blogger often picked on mainstream media thus affecting the ego of the journalist too I presume but what we fail to realize sometimes that it all boils down to what the 4th Floor people say thus at the end of the day its not the journalist that bloggers are against or unhappy about its the way news is presented by those way up there! It was essential for us bloggers to work with journalist towards a bigger course, towards digital democracy as Jeff earlier said we have chosen the digital channel to express that!

After Rocky and Jeff were sued in early Jan(the NSTP court case continues till today) the idea of All-Blogs soon came to shape! Around more than 60 bloggers got together to form this national alliance of bloggers. Since the idea materialized in April 2007, there has been no turning back with on-going activities from the Bangsa Malaysia-Do, Multi-Faith Doa, Buka Puasa Meeting Iniative with PELITAR+ Citizen Think Tank+ All Blogs and most recent this spectacular forum! I believe more is to come from this pro-active organization, personally I’m glad it hasn’t remain static!

Rocky even related his attempt at invited dear old Zam our Information Minister to the event, sadly he declined as he is busy with some other engagement and said that he would try to make it for future events-let’s hold him to it shall we?. Busy or made busy I have no idea. But oh well, as Rocky brilliantly stated;

” We are moving fast with or without our Information Minister” – Rocky

Part 2 on David Sasaki and A.Kadir Jasin’s Take on Digital Democracy...…to be continued