YOURSAY 'It is actually the Umno politicians who are confusing the people.'
Kee Thuan Chye: Can Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi provide evidence to show that permits for Malaysiakini and FZ.com will "confuse" the public?
Who is he to say that there are "too many" newspapers already in the market? In fact, it can be argued that in the English language, there are only a few newspapers, and most of them are owned by BN parties.
According to Ahmad Zahid, Malaysiakini and FZ.com have the "tendency" to publish "sensational and controversial news". Doesn't Umno-owned Utusan Malaysia do the same?
In any case, his view is subjective. Both online news portals have by and large practised responsible journalism, and certainly not the kind that Utusan practises, which is churning out propaganda.
And since it is only his own opinion, he should let it be tested in the open market as to whether the public finds Malaysiakini and FZ.com's news "sensational and controversial".
In the best interests of a true democracy, he should not disallow any organisation from starting a newspaper.
Lim Chong Leong: More rubbish from the home minister again. Surely the number of existing print media has nothing to do with the number of people in Malaysia, but with readership.
If the existing papers are printing so much lies that no one reads them anymore, then surely the number of print establishments does not matter.
And yes, it would be confusing for the people when their lies do not tally with the truth that is being posted by Malaysiakini .
Fernz: The government has no business controlling the number of newspapers in the country. That's for the market to decide. It's for readers to decide on the content in media.
The government cannot decide what is confusing and what is sensational. The government is making the same mistake as with Catholic weekly The Herald when it decided that Christians using 'Allah' for God would confuse Muslims.
Proof is the latest statistics from the authorities show that no Muslim in the country has left Islam in the last 10 years for Christianity or other religions.
Louis: Only a mad person would call another person mad. Similarly a confused government will say people are equally confused. There are many who have subscribed to Malaysiakini for umpteen years and none thus far have claimed to be confused by its reporting.
But if Ahmad Zahid considers that Malaysiakini reporting the truth is sensational, I would gladly agree to that. But sadly, Ahmad Zahid and the government cannot stand the truth.
How can Ahmad Zahid claim there are enough number of newspapers in the country? A quick search on the Internet shows that there are only about eight newspapers (English) in Malaysia. Australia, with a population about equal to Malaysia, has 25 - three times that of what we have here.
And how do you say that there is a sufficient number of newspapers for us, Ahmad Zahid? Just admit that the government is afraid of the truth.
Anonymous #25558299: Zahid, it is your toilet papers Utusan and Berita Harian that always publish sensational and controversial news as they are Umno's lapdogs.
Malaysiakini will be the only paper that will publish the truth and facts for the people so that we know exactly what is happening in Malaysia. Why are you afraid of revealing the truth?
Gerard Lourdesamy: So the home minister concedes that the government or rather Umno-BN owned print and broadcasting media in this country does not get "confused" because they only report what they are told to report.
Isn't publishing "sensational" and "controversial" stories part and parcel of a free and responsible press and hallmarks of good journalism? Those offended by the stories can always sue for defamation or the police can investigate for sedition or criminal defamation.
What Zahid fears is the effects of a free and independent press that will liberate the minds of the rural Malays/bumiputera and expose them to the corruption, abuses and excesses of the Umno-BN regime.
This enlightenment of the Malay/bumiputera mind will undoubtedly lead to the demise of Umno-BN.
True_Malaysian: Who will be confused: the publisher, the reader or the home minister? Is it the confusion or the sensationalism?
It is actually the Umno politicians who are confusing the people. Malaysians have had enough and now the international community is getting a dose of their confusion over MH370.
Anonymous #44199885: The home minister's definition of sensational news is any news that is not flattering of BN or not derogatory of Pakatan Rakyat. He displays fear of an informed public or a public that is capable of rational thinking.
Sam04: I can't believe just how often the word 'confuse' is used by Malaysians to justify dictatorial and undemocratic behaviour. Clearly Malaysians are a very 'confused' people all round.
Onyourtoes: Can we see the subjectivity and arbitrariness of home minister’s decision - "being confused by too many newspapers flooding the marketplace”; “the number of newspapers allowed publication are enough for the number of readers in the country at this time"; and Malaysiakini and FZ have the "tendency to publish sensational and controversial news in order to attract public attention”.
Please home minister, you are not a school principal and we are not your students. Whether we will be confused or not is for us, the mature people, to determine and decide. Whether or not there are too many newspapers in the marketplace is for the market and competition to decide.
Whether or not the number of newspapers allowed publication is enough for the number of readers in the country is for journalistic expertise and competitiveness of each paper to fight it out. I think Malaysia has no understanding what level-playing field through market forces are all about.
The role of newspapers is to publish the unbiased truth. Tendency to publish sensational and controversial news are subjective. Can we ever avoid certain news are sensational and controversial if we want to know the truth?
For example, a very expensive diamond has entered our country through a courier. Is it sensational? But is it true? There are laws to protect slander and libel, so what is the issue here? Malaysiakini should sell me a brick at half price for my effort.
Odin: Ahmad Zahid, the fact that you obviously consider it all right for newspapers linked to your party to publish falsehood to create in their readers the feeling of hatred towards those who pose a threat to your party (e.g., Australian senator Nick Xenophon) and towards non-Muslims, in particular Christians, and a sense of disgust for the completely innocent and defenceless (e.g., the Penans), but you are bent on suppressing news purveyors such as Malaysiakini further besmirches your not-quite-enviable reputation.
Wira: We are a small country. Why are we having as many cabinet ministers as United States and Australia combined? To add salt to the wound, many of ours are morons.
Oracle: With the intense international media spotlight on Malaysia, this decision which clearly shows that authorities will tolerate no criticism, demonstrates that ‘transparency’ is certainly non-existent. What spectacular timing!
Turvy: I have lived 50 years in this country. I am not confused. I have been a teacher. I have not seen confusion as a disorder among any of my students. They were always sure of themselves, whatever their race.
No student was absent because he or she was confused and had to stay home. At no time did the authorities close schools because people were confused.
I have walked the streets and driven the highways. No confusion there among the people. Some needed more driving lessons but they were not confused.
So how is it that this tiny mob of people who have become our elected leaders always invoke confusion as a national disorder among the population. People will be confused for this and that is all we hear.
I am still not confused. I am downright angry.
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