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
    dorpus, 19 Apr 2007 @ 8:58pm

    Re: Re: The Power of Ignorance

    My point was that Americans tend to equate free expression with the development of a tolerant democracy. In Asia, the opposite is happening -- mobs of nationalist vigilantes feed each other biased information, and make a sport of going after people they don't like. Some Japanese blogs would have us believing that the VT killer is hailed as a great national hero in Korea, selectively quoting offensive cartoons or other blogs, like this one.

    http://blog.livedoor.jp/tonchamon/

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