Did Dr M speak too soon on Internet censorship?

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your say 'He was talking about how muzzled S'poreans are compared to M'sians, that M'sia is much more democratic, much freer...'.

Online news sites to be included under PPPA

Ma'arip: It is already so hard to get a printing licence and it is easy for the Home Ministry to suspend a printing licence, and yet secretary-general Mahmood Adam said the amendment is not meant to tighten control.

The control has nothing to do with sedition but more of concerns over anti-BN views. BN has to get used to having an opposition and has to get used to losing, because we are living in a democratic country.

Stop thinking like a dictator. Pakatan Rakyat has the same intention as BN - to rule the country and serve the people - hence what is so wrong with that?

Swipenter Dr Mahathir Mohamad, our ex-premier for 22 years, was talking about how muzzled Singaporeans are compared to Malaysians by their respective governments. How he boasted that Malaysia is much more democratic, much freer and the people are allowed to be critical of the government openly.

Maybe he spoke too soon as he may have to swallow his own words now.

Not Confused: Yet more oppression. What the government does not seem to realise that this attempt to suppress dissent and criticism will fail miserably. Forgive the poor souls, because they clearly do not understand how online publications work.

Most are, or soon will be, hosted overseas. They will then try to block access to "undesirable" sites (in their eyes), which will also fail miserably. Still, yet again, it demonstrates that BN are fast becoming another undemocratic dictatorship.

Dood: Is this the beginning of the end for Malaysiakini ? Internal Security Act for all Malaysiakini staff for publishing whatever Umno/BN deems "seditious" (which is probably anything even seen as slightly anti-Umno/BN)?

If so, let me say first that it's been nice knowing you all. Keep up the good work while you still have time left.

KeepYourHead: We object the censorship to Internet, especially online news media. Period. BN will face the wrath of netizens if it tries to take away the little freedoms we have left with.

A killer blow to online media

Faz: This will be the unkindest cut of all, to deprive the population at large of the alternative news. Look, Umno-BN have theirs. Is it too much to ask for these alternative news channels for us?

Malaysians are mature enough to filter news from Internet. So whatever reasons given out now is an after-thought when many Malaysians do not look for government-controlled mainstream media for leads anymore as the mainstream media are just tools of the powers-that-be, instead of enlightening us.

Don't blame us for your shortcomings. This will be a dangerous precedence, and if implemented, ‘underground news' and ‘rumours' will be even more uncontrollable. So, be wise. If mainstream media do fair reporting, I will buy and read them. As New Straits Times says, you are what you read.

Cala: Is PM Najib Razak desperate? Malaysiakini editor-in-chief Steven Gan is correct to reach the conclusion that Najib is a lot more authoritarian in exercising his power.

In one stroke, PPPA (Printing Presses and Publications Act) shall spell the immediate death of freedom of expression for any online media. By his action, Najib is saying that online media matters to him and to the survival of Umno-led BN coalition, and he is conceding that he is losing the war in winning over the younger audience.

He is interpreting the rules the way he likes and change them in such a way as to enable him to have a firmer grip on the handle of power so that the regime may rule for another 53 good years. The issue is, will the people accept that?

Lexicon: Times have changed since Mahathir wielded absolute power over us. Technology has changed. Najib and his wife Rosmah Mansor are mistaken if they think they can put a lid on the Pandora's box.

Singa Pura Pura: The twin towers of tyranny in Malaysia. Just have to repeat this quote again.

"You do not have to look into your books, nor do you require 20/20 vision, to recognise the twin hallmarks of a tyranny: a subservient press and a subservient judiciary. It is very rare in history to find examples of a society which enjoyed an independent, free press, but was marred by a subservient judiciary, or where an independent judiciary flourished alongside a subservient press." Igor Judge LJ.

Loyal Malaysian: With the Umnoputras' majority in Parliament, the opposition to the amendments to the Printing Presses and Publications Act (PPPA) must be waged where it matters.

What about the Bill of Guarantees when the Multimedia Super Corridor was trumpeted? Of course, Najib can choose to ignore that uncrowned king's (Mahathir's) pledge. He, after all, is hardly a gentleman and we have ample examples of him breaking promises.

Survivor: It is because there is an avenue for the people to voice their dissent through the Internet that the current political climate remain healthy, notwithstanding and albeit the abuse of rule of law.

There is such a thing as the "last straw that break the camel's back". By taking away the bloggers' (people's) right to freedom of expression, the next alternative recourse would certainly be social unrest, either in the form civil disobedience or outright show of people's power to oust the evil regime.

The new law will certainly be meant to punish those who voice out against Umno/BN but will ignore the racist rhetoric of those so-called pro-Umno media.

Koh Stanley: News portals, bloggers, etc, should organise among themselves and work out the logistics to counter this barbaric laws. There is little to be said but much to be done. With millions of FB (Facebook) and Internet users, they can vote out the BN and its lackeys just on this issue alone.

Phra Ong Chao: Great move, government. Next, why not make everyone in the country wear a GPS-tracking anklet?

Ida Bakar: In more enlightened democracies the judiciary would be a place for recourse and redress for those who are aggrieved by unjust laws and regulations. Unfortunately, this arm of civilise nation has strings attached and only moves on the behest of the puppet masters.

This attempt to curb online newspapers may force them underground, with proxy servers and so on. Then, only a select few will have access. But in today's age of the Internet, the information can spread to the wider audience all the same.

Furthermore, in any information starved society, rumours and heresays achieve legitimacy when the the 'official' media is no longer trusted. Throughout recent history from the Russian revolution to the Iranian revolution, it was the unofficial media that galvanise the masses.

Najib may be tempting fate with this new form of censorship; and fate has the habit of answering back.

Aisyah: Are PM Najib Razak and his gang afraid of the Tunisian effect? Long live the rakyat.

 


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