Surprises

by Mike Masnick




Malaysia's Former Prime Minister A Fan Of Blogs As Alternative News Source

from the nice-of-him-to-say-that-now... dept

It's been interesting to see how various governments around the world deal with the freedom of speech issues that the internet has been creating. We've seen Thailand, Turkey and Brazil all block sites at one point or another, after some were upset about some user-created content. However, it appears that at least some are recognizing that you can't make everyone shut up when every computer is its own printing press. Earlier this month, we wrote about how some Malaysian politicians were so upset with some blogs criticizing local policies that there was talk of forcing bloggers to register with the government along with a few poorly thought out statements about how bloggers were liars. While other politicians rejected the idea of forcing bloggers to register, it's interesting to see the country's former prime minister, Mahathir Mohmad quoted as saying that he believes blogs are a valuable source of news -- especially given the "tightly controlled" media. Of course, as the article notes that Mahathir was criticized during his own administration for suppressing the media -- so the praise rings a bit hollow. As one person in the story notes: "I just wished that he would have said the same thing when he was prime minister."

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  1. identicon
    skaheru, 20 Apr 2007 @ 1:51am

    the power of ignorance

    Boss, even if Mahatir were suppressing the media during his time at the helm, there were no blogs then; so we should be happy that he's realised how important free thought and speech are.
    On dorpus' worries about the spreading of lies - believe me, that's the essence of free speech; normally a media house that is identified as having told a lie is blacklisted as unreliable and won't be listened to - same as would happen to blogs such as the one you sent me to (in Japanese or something!)

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