Thursday, May 01, 2008

World Press Freedom Day

The World Press Freedom Day falls on the 3rd May.

To be frank, while I've been a firm believer in the freedom of the press, and that the printing and publications act in its current form in Malaysia must be drastically revamped, I've never really been an activist in this sphere (well, we can't be everything). I've always focused more on education and economic issues faced by the country as I would regard those as areas in which I have "comparative advantage" ;-)

Therefore, when I'm cited in the latest Economist article, "Getting the Word Out", as one of the newly elected opposition members of parliament (together with Jeff Ooi, who inspired me into blogging in the first place) who forms part of this new wave of "getting the word out" via the alternative media, and an implied role in the events which has overtaken the country over the past 2 months, I feel a little shy-lah.
The past few weeks have seen some exciting developments in Malaysia, which despite being a democracy has had a shameful record of muzzling the press. In the general election in March, Malaysians abandoned the plodding, pro-government traditional media in droves and turned to the web—especially to a courageous and highly professional news site, Malaysiakini. Two prominent news bloggers, Jeff Ooi and Tony Pua, were elected for opposition parties. Both have been blogging live from parliament this past week as it convened following the election.
Let me put the record straight, being mentioned in the same paragraph as Malaysiakini and Jeff is certainly an honour for me, as it's like my name being mentioned with Tiger Woods in the same breath. I just hope I can live up to expectations.

This is the second time too, that we were highlighted in The Economist, the earlier mention just after elections - "Internet & Malaysian Politics: The Perils of Modernity".

As I said, expectations are high and I shudder sometimes when thinking about the weight on our tiny shoulders...

Anyway, in conjunction with the World Press Freedom Day, the Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) is organising a "Towards Media and Information Law Reform" where Teo Nie Ching, my colleague from Serdang will be speaking.
Venue: The Annex, Central Market
Date: 4 May 2008 (Sun)
Time: 12.30 - 2.00 pm
This forum is part of a series of events held in Central Market by CIJ. For more details, check the Malaysia World Press Freedom Day blog here.
Post a Comment