It would appear that some politicians in Malaysia have gone through quite a transformation when it comes to blogging. Almost exactly one year ago, some Malaysian politicians got into a bit of an argument with some bloggers and started trashing the entire concept of blogging -- leading to some politicians there declaring that all bloggers needed to register themselves
with the government if they wanted to keep blogging. That resulted in an uproar, and the politicians backed down
on the registration requirement. In fact, they started to check out blogs a little more carefully, and even liked
what they saw. By the end of that same month, the government agreed to set up a special government agency
to follow blogs and interact with bloggers to respond to any concerns they might have. Fast forward a year and not only do some of the original leading critics of blogging have their own blogs, but the ruling political party is now requiring many of its political candidates to blog
. Anyone who wants a "youth post" needs to have a blog. The guy in charge of the party's youth wing explained: "All candidates must have blogs. If not, they are not qualified to be leaders."
So they've gone from hating blogs to requiring them in about a year. To be fair, a lot of this is politically motivated. Apparently the opposition has been getting plenty of attention because its leader has a popular blog. So this is likely a politically motivated response. Also, it seems almost equally as extreme as the original plan to require bloggers to register. Not everyone should blog. Not everyone wants to blog. Requiring a politician to have a blog, even if it's helpful, seems a bit extreme. It certainly won't lead to good content if people are forced to blog, rather than blogging for a good reason.