Thursday, March 15, 2007

Sphincters Shit on Senior Scribe

The netizens of the Malaysian Blogosphere have this bad habit of putting their online feet into their mouths.

The reactions to Rehman Rashid's commentary in the NST are fine examples of this. Bloggers are belching fire and brimstone, their sphincters puckered in anger.

(oh Gawd... First we had defend some of the government's views, then NST's right to seek recourse in courts and now I can't believe that we're trying to defend Rehman! Arrgghhhh!!! The Pain!!! The Pain!!!)

Here's one:

"...Maybe these statments are true to certain extent.many bloggers are refused to reveal their own identity....
BUT, the true bloggers wont hide their identities..." written by Anonymous

There's more but I can't be arsed to copy and paste it here. Even his old flame has a special post on this.

But I digress.

To me the article was about his misgivings with technology. His pet independent online media, Agenda Malaysia, is perhaps a true testament to this when it failed.

But why are we overreacting to a self confessional piece of a luddite? Just because he belittles bloggers?

Hey, we belittle other bloggers ALL the time don't we? Is this an example of the sacrosant behaviour that he was writing about?

He may have called us rectums, but that does not justify all the verbal diarrheoa that slanted towards more name calling and character assasination comments.

Hardly sacrosanct behaviour.

Rehman also writes

"But no, it’s all good. Let a hundred thousand million flowers bloom; let all voices be heard, in however fractured language, whether or not they have anything pertinent to communicate or any information worth more than spittle to offer"

The demeaning innuendos aside, he does after all welcome the practice of free speech. And he does it with much verbosity and eloquence!

I must admit that I learn many new words while reading Rehman's articles ;)

And what of those who do not wish to learn anything positive from this article? Take another cue from Rehman himself:

"Are they not entitled to their opinion? Of course they are, as much as everyone else is entitled to ignore them."

So yes, ignore him. It's your right.

After all he's just Mr Bombastic and not Mr Boombastic! ;)


Anonymous said...

★sipm You are on the big news!!…

Elanor said...

In a blatant attempt of self-promotion, I think my entry here:

provides a good perspective on the issue:

"… [T]he beauty of blogging: Self regulation at its very best. While 99.9% of blogs will be read only by their authors and three buddies, possibly coerced, quality asserts itself quickly and rises to the top..."

"Blogging’s greatest “weakness” is thus its greatest strength: Web authors and their sites come with no expectations, claims, or certifications of quality or reliability... The blogosphere has something for everyone. Viewpoints are chosen, not dictated, and niches of interest explored, not marginalized."

"Left to the free market of ideas and instant reader feedback, good writing, quality and reliability in blogging secures a readership and reputation solely on merit."

"Perhaps Malaysian bloggers could down-play politically charged tendency and instead be catalysts to cultivate objective pursuance of truth and knowledge. It is bound to be more productive if the aim is to sow the seed towards a more mature society."

Where is your economic policy?

Mydeen Aboo Backer said...

Ahh, our economic policy. That mundane thing which actually is required for running of a country.

SiPM's economic policy has been stated in bits over the course of our posts. For example, one running theme we have is to halve the civil service and raise salaries for those who remaain in order to have an efficient and professional bureaucracy. You'll find our other economic related thrusts in previous and subsequent posts as we strive for a Malaysia we all hope for.

And to anonymous, landing on Mars was a fine milestone. We've yet to announce our biggest discovery on the planet, but as a teaser, it rhymes with Manchester United.

Dek Mat said...

anonymous: the report is not true. we have yet to make a public appearance and therefore how could the paper know that we're even humans? we could be rectum-like aliens for all you know! ;)

Dek Mat said...

elanor: our mini manifesto on transport/economy will be finished soon. look out for it this weekend!

mydeen: its a promise i made with elanor lah, she's to comment on our economic policies... am actually trying to rope her in to be our economics and finance shadow minister :)

johnleemk said...

Well, I think the really offending paragraph was this:

"In my opinion, what they’ve really done is prove why freedom of expression was a really bad idea. In this country, a host of folk who never had a hope of getting published are now proving why not."

Basically, Rehman Rashid is belittling freedom of expression, not just bloggers alone, and that has me concerned. He seems to imply that the only people worth having a voice are journalists - which is very unfair to responsible bloggers and others with a soapbox in non-traditional media.

Mat Merah said...

anonymous: you've made a mistake with the planet- it's ur-anus...

johnleemk: thanks for your eloquent opinion on us. thank you for your opinion on rehman's opinion but everyone has a right to an opinion, good or bad.

Rehman's rehman's, yours yours, ours ours.

oh shit.

hope that's not to confusing or constipated! :)

johnleemk said...

Certainly everyone has the right to their opinion - and I don't think anyone's said Rehman Rashid should not have the right to speak his mind. The trouble is, the part I quoted sounds like Rehman believes bloggers don't have the right to our opinion. ;)

Mat Merah said...


Old Malay saying that is good to remember at these times... Siapa makan cili, dia rasa pedasnya.

Also, it's just Rehman Rashid's opinion, does it really matter?

We think not.

The state of the nation is far more important than his opinion about technology and the so-called blogosphere.

Despite that, the reaction to his piece vindicates him.

What irony.

And of course, how does a Luddite like him reads his wikipedia entry. It wouldn't have existed in his antediluvian world.

Now that's we want to know!

mich said...

john, 2 cents of my thought:
1) there is a wide spectrum of bloggers out there. As for freedom of expression, some used it wisely, some "abused" it, but of course not up to me to judge-lar.
2) Saying freedom of expression as "bad idea" is not same as banning or totally forbid them. Saying driving SUV spew out a lot of CO2 is a bad idea is not exactly the same as totally banning SUV on road, even though there might be a slippery slope ;)

edalinka said...

Have you browsed rocky's site very recently? A little bit of bickering is going over there, on the comments section under apparently ANOTHER write up on Rehman, as if Tengku Adnan's issue is not overrated enough.

Anyway! I'm commenting here because I'm very very afraid. I've said it before that I hate it when people start to do massive jumping on the bandwagon, united and all, because all of sudden it's not niche anymore. And I kinda like niche stuff. Like SiPM.

Now, on the comments section that I mentioned above - I found voices of reason, exactly like what I hear here and at mentera. I mean, voices of reason is making rounds and I can feel it coming! Soon it's going to hit the market and will turn mainstream, everybody's going to be united to do the bandwagon jumping together... and, it's not going to be niche anymore :(

mich said...

your writing hit my very same nerve of feeling too: bandwagoning. I don't mind people united for something, unity is a good virtue. But when unity turn out to be a way to uniformise all the voices, it will turn out very scary. We have mainstream media (MSM) on one hand, and seemingly we are having mainstream blogger (MSB) on the other side. Is SiPM a maverick, stand on their own?

Mat Merah said...

mich, edalinka,

We think that we will never be on any wagon, band or otherwise, as we are really quite off the wagon.

As for niche or being mavericks, we decided that we shall forge (fake as the case may be) our own path, dance to our own tunes (or videos we cast in SiPM), and try to see the big picture but not forgetting the details that make us all unique Malaysians.

We think every one has a right to associate, disassociate and be an ass as and when they want to!

mich said...

Hi Mat Merah and the gang:
Please feel free to drop by this blog for various discussion topics: Various voices are welcomed :)