Friday, April 06, 2007

Blogger registrations: taking a step backwards

I love my country, Malaysia. I love the fact that we have many personal freedoms. There are not many countries like that in the region. There is a reason why it's nicknamed 'bolehland'. That's because, 'semua boleh' (everything can). Some may suggest that our freedoms are slowly being eroded. I hate to say it, but I tend to agree.

Therefore, I take it as an insult when our clueless deputy minister, blabs his mouth off again. Someone should really gag him before he causes any further damage. He tried to suggest that his statements were misconstrued and that they weren't suggestions that bloggers should be censored [think MSC bills of agreement]. He innocently claims that the registration is merely for data collection.

Now, I won't comment on these things again as I've already done so many times. Blogger registration is the *wrong* method to solve a non-existant problem. But what really got to me was his suggestion that this method was correct, because other countries such as Singapore, Thailand, China and Middle East countries were successfully doing it.

Hmm, let me see what's the problem with that. In Singapore, a person can get fined for chewing gum. In Thailand, a person gets 10 years jail for defacing a poster of the monarch. In China, they shoot people for saying the wrong things about the government. In some Middle East countries, they chop off people's heads on television. None of these countries seem to be great bastions of human freedom and democracy. [In Malaysia, you can get fined for holding hands in public! - Ed]

I like it that he thinks that Malaysia needs to learn how to manage bloggers from these countries. He must think that they are very good examples to follow. Like I said in my other blog, some ministers need to learn how to think critically and not just mouth off 'bulat-bulat'. There's nothing wrong with copying, just do it the correct way.

I think that the PR problem that I had noticed earlier with our PM is spreading to the rest of the government. This blogging 'problem' is merely a PR issue. Hence, it merely needs to be managed as a PR issue. Just hire the right people to put the correct 'spin' on things. Every other competent government in the world does this.

It's called information management. If our deputy minister can't even manage that, he has no business being in the Kementerian Tenaga, Air dan Kommunikasi (KTAK). [What a joke! - Ed] Hopefully, the minister in charge will politely tell his deputy to STFU and squash this effort, once and for all.

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