Wednesday May 28, 2008
Government to engage bloggers in cyberspace
By SHAHANAAZ HABIB
KUALA LUMPUR: The Government will take on bloggers in cyberspace and respond to wild and baseless allegations raised in blogs.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said remaining silent was no longer an option.
He acknowledged that the Government had overlooked the need to engage the new media, which was a new dimension in shaping public opinion, in the recent general election.
The Government had not been savvy in engaging the new media and lost out in cyberspace, he said, adding: “But we live and learn.”
Najib said this during a question and answer session at the Asia Media Summit 2008 here yesterday.
He in fact has started the ball rolling by putting a reply through his press secretary Datuk Tengku Sariffuddin Tengku Ahmad to a posting on Malaysia Today, a news portal run by Raja Petra Kamaruddin.
Najib said it was obvious that the Barisan Nasional Government would now need to engage the new media.
“We need to have people who are active participants of the new media, who are sympathetic and understanding of the government’s position.“Therefore, instead of just criticising them (the new media) or running them down, the best thing to do is to engage them. Hopefully they will understand our perspective,” he added. - more HERE.
Now, consider the irony. Some of the biggest bloggers in Malaysia now are Umno bloggers. Dr Mahathir (he's quit the party but only until PM Badawi steps down) should touch 1 million hits in the next 24 hours. A million visitors in less than a month is phenomenal, unheard of. Probably a world record. Most bloggers take years to reach a million.
Khir Toyo's blog is big, too. Since March 28, he's attracted over 600,000 visitors.
Kelab Maya Umno, or myKMU, is one of the biggest websites and it is pro-Umno. Agenda Daily is pro-Umno, too. Bigdogdotcom has over 1 million visitors.
The number of pro-Government bloggers would still be small (only 20 out of 190 socio-political blogs surveyed by a varsity before March 8 were pro-Government) but the traffic they are generating is not.
So what's the problem?
Well, the thing is these Umno/pro-Umno bloggers are too critical of the party's leadership. Many are actually anti-Badawi and his policies, promises, and practices.
The Government wants to engage bloggers? Sure. If it can convince its own bloggers to support it, maybe it'll be easier to persuade others.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Govt to take on bloggers
At 11:08 am