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Monday, January 08, 2007

Censored to protect your fragile mind

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A big hat-tip to The Malaysian and Howsy who both brought this to Walski's attention.

Censorship is alive and well in this great nation of ours - particularly print and TV (try Astro Channel 26 sometime... British humor has never been so annoyingly bleeped).

Image hosting by PhotobucketProtecting the fragile minds of Malaysians
(full article here, or alternatively, here)

And since your minds are so damned fragile, the rest of this post has been censored for your intellectually numb comfort and inconvenience.

In Walski's opinion, censorship of print and electronic media is annoying and stupid, for a number of reasons. First, when it comes to print media (like in the article) reading becomes a pain, not knowing what the fuck's been blanked out. And just because the intellect of the marker-wielding moron censor is fragile, he/she assumes the rest of the Malaysia has to be as intellectually bankrupt. It's not an Offical Secret that most of what's in the international print media is available online anyway.

The notion that the offending black-markered text and torn out pages are available online anyway, is seen by the Internal Security Ministry as being "besides the point", tells Walski that
a) the people staffing the ministry are a bunch of idiots, and
b) the rest of Malaysia are expected to emulate this idiocy.

And no, it's not multiple choice, dear fragile-minded readers - both apply.

It's for this very same black-marker/rip-out-page reason that Walski stopped buying foreign magazines a long time ago. It insults Walski to think that some mindless civil servant has the right to prevent Walski from reading what he wants to. Nevermind that the said civil servant is just following orders - mindlessly, of course. Ultimately, Walski pays for said civil servant's salary - Walski's the boss (as are all tax-paying Malaysians) - and the boss says, "Stop with the fucking black-marker/rip-off-pages... NOW!
(more from the Boss of Civil Service, in the full [censored] post)

Consider this, what if one day, while following orders to blank out anything in print media that is offensive to Islam, the mindless civil servant decides that the small letter "t" was offensive, because it resembled the crucifix? Would every occurece of the small letter "t" have to be blanked out? Today, it's "crucifixes" on biscuits, tomorrow print media. Yes, this example may be exaggerated, but you get the picture. And following that, every damn word with the small letter "t" in it.

It appears like while the paradigm of the world surrounding them has drastically changed with the advent of openly accessible information on the Internet, civil servants are still stuck in their own archaic paradigms. This, in effect, makes what the PM says - "[B]iggest task for government servants this year is to improve the public service delivery system and wipe out the perception of weakness, inadequacy and general malaise in the public sector", not only insurmountable, but downright near impossible.

Yes, this post has been painful to read thus far. But it underlines the fact that censorship is FUtile - not to mention annoying. Don't worry - it gets worse.

And so it equally boggles the mind why the fuck Astro decided to carry BBC Entertainment as a channel on its own, knowing damn well that every other word would be bleeped, especially when it comes to the wry, intelligent humor exhibited in British comedies - granted, some of the comedies fall flat, but having words, sometimes entire sentences, bleeped, just makes viewing the channel a fucking annoying, pain in the ass experience.

Just like trying to read the preceeding paragraphs [warning: uncensored sentence].

Walski's hint on uncensoring the censored text: Highlighting the censored text with your mouse should reveal what's been written - Walski simply changed the color to match the background. The smart ones reading this would already have figured that out - but just in case...