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Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Yo-yo on the down-swing: The Heat is On

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yo-yo n. A toy consisting of a spool that is reeled up and down on a string by motions of the hand.

The explosive yo-yo of internet control falls further on its down-swing, although no signs any explosion just yet.

Image hosting by PhotobucketThe Star - August 2, 2006 front page
(Fidel Castro & Steve McClaren both had no comment
on the PM's statement)

And so the yo-yo of internet control continues its vertical path, up and down and up and down. This follows the mixed signals given by various ministers the past few days. Howsy has been keeping track of the ups-and-downs, which you can read as a backgrounder.

Only yesterday, however, came this news report:

But some of what's in today's news report makes for some interesting pondering (emphasis by myAsylum).

"If information in blogs, websites and online portals were incorrect, bordered on slander, caused disturbance or compelled the public to lose faith in the nation’s economic policies, their authors would be detained for investigation", said Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Walski doesn't believe anyone's done an analysis of hot negative blog reports versus the KLSE performance, nor is there a known correlation. Nor has any web-based news been known to cause public disturbance - on the contrary, it's citizen reporting on the web (blogs, portals, etc.) that has covered public disturbances that the mainstream media has been instructed to not cover.

And in fact, most of the time, the stock market is more influenced by the statements of ministers and government department heads, plus the corporate captains, versus what's reported on the net. When one minister says Aye, and another Nay on the same issue, and yet another says something else altogether (usually Huh?) - on the same issue - it tells us something is amiss. But it also begs the question: "Do these dolts people even know what they're talking about?" Or is it just a lot of hot air?

Image hosting by PhotobucketJust when you thought the yo-yo was beginning its up-swing

But here's the bigger question - what's to determine that the mainstream media reports fairly, without obvious bias (completely non-biased media is an oxymoron, remember?), and more important, reports and publishes truthfully - this includes publishing reader mail without editorializing the content (as reported by Screenshots).

The Sun also published an interesting editorial, "Control the hot air over media control". Keep a bucket of salt handy when you read it, though - Walski could smell the sarcasm emanate as he was reading it. The clincher is in the last paragraph:

"And while we are at it, we should also control if not outright ban all politicians from giving speeches since more often than not they are the ones who stir up racial and religious emotions, as we often see happen even in parliament."

Things would be a lot different if we actually had more transparency and honesty - obfuscation usually leads to speculation, which leads to rumor-mongering, which leads to.. You catch the drift.

In any case, Walski does hope that the yo-yo doesn't continue on its downswing any further. A yo-yo of this kind exploding usually means a witchhunt - the last thing anyone wants, right?