Over the last few years, we've followed the ongoing efforts of gov't officials to figure out the whole "blogging" thing. It started off poorly with gov't officials insulting bloggers and trying to pass a law that would have required all bloggers to register
with the government. After that failed, the ruling party looked, for a bit, as if it might be trying to understand and embrace blogs. It set up an agency
just to respond to blogs and even told certain of its own candidates for office that they needed to blog
themselves. However, apparently it was the opposition party that embraced blogging much more -- and even a few of the bigger name bloggers got themselves elected. In response? The government demanded that ISPs block certain blogs
, including the very popular Malaysia Today.
The latest news is that the government has rescinded the ban... but has arrested the site's founder
. That doesn't seem like the best way to get bloggers on their side. It never fails to amaze me why politicians seek to shut up those who oppose them. What's wrong with actually responding and letting people understand the multiple positions? If you're confident that your position is the correct one, then why not convince people that's the case?