Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Internet Manifesto

A subject of interest to all Bloggers, copied from LED DARE by, but the original source is The Guardian, UK

The Internet Manifesto
12 September 2009

So what is it all about? Starting with the sentence “The internet is different”, the 17 declarations might not be hot news, but they tie together some of the more innovative positions about journalism in the age of the net, reports the Guardian.

The authors believe that the internet improves journalism if the media adapt their working methods to today’s technological reality, “instead of ignoring or challenging it”.

Furthermore, the signatories claim that “copyright becomes a civic duty on the internet”. And that there is indeed a value of quality online, because “the internet debunks homogeneous bulk goods”. Therefore, there is money in online journalism, although “tradition is not a business model” – its business model has to be adapted to the rules of the net.

The ‘Internet Manifesto’ bucks a trend

Internet Manifesto
How journalism works today. Seventeen declarations

1. The internet is different.

It produces different public spheres, different terms of trade and different cultural skills. The media must adapt their work methods to today’s technological reality instead of ignoring or challenging it. It is their duty to develop the best possible form of journalism based on the available technology. This includes new journalistic products and methods.

2. The internet is a pocket-sized media empire.

The web rearranges existing media structures by transcending their former boundaries and oligopolies. The publication and dissemination of media contents are no longer tied to heavy investments. Journalism’s self-conception is, fortunately, being bereft of its gatekeeping function. All that remains is the journalistic quality through which journalism distinguishes itself from mere publication.

3. The internet is our society is the internet.

Web-based platforms like social networks, Wikipedia or YouTube have become a part of everyday life for the majority of people in the western world. They are as accessible as the telephone or television. If media companies want to continue to exist, they must understand the world of today’s users and embrace their forms of communication. This includes basic forms of social communication: listening and responding, also known as dialogue.

4. The freedom of the internet is inviolable.

The internet’s open architecture constitutes the basic IT law of a society which communicates digitally and, consequently, of journalism. It may not be modified for the sake of protecting the special commercial or political interests often hidden behind the pretense of public interest. Regardless of how it is done, blocking access to the internet endangers the free flow of information and corrupts our fundamental right to a self-determined level of information.

5. The internet is the victory of information.

Due to inadequate technology, media companies, research centres, public institutions and other organisations compiled and classified the world’s information up to now. Today every citizen can set up her own personal news filter while search engines tap into a wealth of information of a magnitude never before known. Individuals can now inform themselves better than ever.

6. The internet changes improves journalism.

Through the internet, journalism can fulfil its socio-educational role in a new way. This includes presenting information as an ever-changing, continual process; the forfeiture of print media’s inalterability is a benefit. Those who want to survive in this new world of information need a new idealism, new journalistic ideas and a sense of pleasure in exploiting this new potential.

7. The net requires networking.

Links are connections. We know each other through links. Those who do not use them exclude themselves from social discourse. This also holds for the websites of traditional media companies.

8. Links reward, citations adorn.

Search engines and aggregators facilitate quality journalism: they boost the findability of outstanding content over a long-term basis and are thus an integral part of the new, networked public sphere. References through links and citations — especially including those made without any consent of or even remuneration of the originator—make the very culture of networked social discourse possible in the first place. They are by all means worthy of protection.

9. The internet is the new venue for political discourse.

Democracy thrives on participation and freedom of information. Transferring the political discussion from traditional media to the internet and expanding on this discussion by involving the active participation of the public is one of journalism’s new tasks.

10. Today’s freedom of the press means freedom of opinion.

Article 5 of the German Constitution does not comprise protective rights for professions or traditional business models. The internet overrides the technological boundaries between the amateur and professional. This is why the privilege of freedom of the press must hold for anyone who can contribute to the fulfilment of journalistic duties. Qualitatively speaking, no differentiation should be made between paid and unpaid journalism, but rather, between good and poor journalism.

11. More is more – there is no such thing as too much information.

Once upon a time, institutions such as the church prioritised power over personal awareness and warned of an unsifted flood of information when the letterpress was invented. On the other hand, pamphleteers, encyclopaedists and journalists proved that more information leads to more freedom, both for the individual as well as society as a whole. To this day, nothing has changed in this respect.

12. Tradition is not a business model.

Money can be made on the internet with journalistic content. There are many examples of this today already. Yet because the internet is fiercely competitive, business models have to be adapted to the structure of the net. No one should try to abstain from this essential adaptation through policy-making geared to preserving the status quo. Journalism needs open competition for the best refinancing solutions on the net, along with the courage to invest in the multifaceted implementation of these solutions.

13. Copyright becomes a civic duty on the internet.

Copyright is a central cornerstone of information organization on the Internet. Originators’ rights to decide on the type and scope of dissemination of their contents are also valid on the net. At the same time, copyright may not be abused as a lever to safeguard obsolete supply mechanisms and shut out new distribution models or license schemes. Ownership entails obligations.

14. The internet has many currencies.

Journalistic online services financed through adverts offer content in exchange for a pull effect. A reader’s, viewer’s or listener’s time is valuable. In the industry of journalism, this correlation has always been one of the fundamental tenets of financing. Other forms of refinancing which are journalistically justifiable need to be forged and tested.

15. What’s on the net stays on the net.

The internet is lifting journalism to a new qualitative level. Online, text, sound and images no longer have to be transient. They remain retrievable, thus building an archive of contemporary history. Journalism must take the development of information, its interpretation and errors into account, i.e., it must admit its mistakes and correct them in a transparent manner.

16. Quality remains the most important quality.

The internet debunks homogeneous bulk goods. Only those who are outstanding, credible and exceptional will gain a steady following in the long run. Users’ demands have increased. Journalism must fulfil them and abide by its own frequently formulated principles.

17. All for all.

The web constitutes an infrastructure for social exchange superior to that of 20th century mass media: when in doubt, the “generation Wikipedia” is capable of appraising the credibility of a source, tracking news back to its original source, researching it, checking it and assessing it — alone or as part of a group effort. Journalists who snub this and are unwilling to respect these skills are not taken seriously by internet users. Rightly so. The internet makes it possible to communicate directly with those once known as recipients — readers, listeners and viewers — and to take advantage of their knowledge. It is not the ‘know-it-all’ journalists who are in demand, but those who communicate and investigate.

Friday, May 15, 2009

BUM2009's NEWS FLASH! Tomorrow is D-Day!

Have you signed on yet for Da Bloggers Event of da Year?


Home CPI Press Releases NEWS FLASH: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will hold a Dialogue at BUM2009!

NEWS FLASH: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will hold a Dialogue at BUM2009!
Press Statements
Written by BUM 2009 Chairman
Thursday, 14 May 2009 14:51

KUALA LUMPUR, May 14, 2009:

Yes,that “surprise speaker” we listed in the tentative Programme Outline – Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad — has confirmed his participation at BUM2009 to be held at the Lake View Club, Subang Jaya on Saturday, 16 May 2009.

BUM Organising Committee Co-chair Sdr Ahirudin Attan aka Rockybru just confirmed that the former Prime Minister, who has established himself a “leading Blogger’s place” with the launch of on May Day last year (coinciding with BUM2008), will hold an hour-long Dialogue, most likely preceding or just after the originally planned Afternoon Session.
BUM2009, plagged off as the Bloggers Event of the Year to mark World Press Freedom Day (which falls on May 3rd), focuses on both the old and new media, with special reference to the role of blogs and bloggers. The organisers have gotten a bit more ambitious and want editors from the mainstream media (Fourth Estate) to sit at the same table with their new media (Fifth Estate) brothers and sisters and discuss common issues.

Online journalists Steven Gan and Fathi Aris Omar and MSM newshounds Citizen R Nadeswaran of theSun, a regular at BUM, have also confirmed their participation, so also MP-Blogger YB Jeff Ooi and YB State Assemblyman-Blogger Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, along with civil society activists like Dr KJ John and lawyers Art Harun and Philip Koh.

“Have they failed us?” is a question that can be asked of the mainstream media as well as the new media, said Rockybru, Interim President of the National Alliance of Bloggers (All-Blogs).

For the first time in three BUM outings, a session to be conducted wholly in Bahasa Malaysia to be chaired by Sdri Helen Ang, and will feature several leading Bloggers, including Berita Publishing’s Datuk A Kadir Jasin, and former Suara Keadilan editor, Faisal Mustaffa.

The Chairman of BUM2009 says for this year, there is room for only 200 bloggers and Bloggers-to-be! That’s going to be a problem, especially now that we have confirmed that the “Surprise Blogger” is helicopter-ing in for the Event!

Check out our official blogsite for details, at

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Wanna Watch "High Noon" among MSM and Bloggers?

This is another TEAser from YL Chong, de Jurassick newshiund, aka Desiderata, the writher-*BUMmer; sometimes I flag myself off as fullOFerrataand this belated Post is a demo -- short for demonstarion, not on the strets of Furong as I heed the authorities and some Royal advice on a Sunday, when I just had my fiill of CON BF!

This report's extract from theSun of Tuesday April 21, 2009 page 6 headlined:

Blogging Community Split
by Tim Leonard

It carries too familiar faces -- seemingly in a FACE-OFF as at that climax of HIGH NOON? If you don't know of Gary Cooper, then spend RM28 on a decent copy of the Original -- see, as an obedient child of the law, I even lend my body weight to fighting Copyrights offenders who sell pirate tapes.

I'll report more later, IF I HAVE THE TIME, or if you have the dime, I am willing to part with my Print copy of deSun for 20million! -- or aMore because High Noon is not just about gunslingers in a duel in the sun -- it's also about LOVE.

MeanW'ILE, please make do with the theme from the movie -- learn it by heART if you gonna stop thy love from moving House, yeah, for the more qualified Doctor, as compared with you bounty hunter or Robin Hood of the www. Guess what www stands for, my dear ER? First four answers getting it right may get an INVITE to see High Noon of the titled kind on May 16, 2009. Caveat -- on condition I can persuade de Boss...He's Almost Persuaded.

*BUMmer is a resident writer at BLOGGERS UNIVERSE MALAYSIA.

"Do Not Forsake Me:
The Ballad of High Noon"

and the Rise
of the Movie Theme Song
by Deborah Allison

Deborah Allison is based in the UK and has recently completed a PhD at the University of East Anglia: "Promises in the Dark: Opening Title Sequences in American Feature Films of the Sound Period."

Do not forsake me O my darlin'

On this our wedding day.
Do not forsake me O my darlin'
Wait, wait along.
The noonday train will bring Frank Miller.
If I'm a man I must be brave
And I must face that deadly killer
Or lie a coward, a craven coward,
Or lie a coward in my grave.

O to be torn 'twixt love and duty!
S'posin' I lose my fair-haired beauty!
Look at that big hand move along
Nearin' high noon.

He made a vow while in State's Prison,
Vow'd it would be my life or his and
I'm not afraid of death, but O,
What will I do if you leave me?

Do not forsake me O my darlin'
You made that promise when we wed.
Do not forsake me O my darlin'
Although you're grievin', I can't be leavin'
Until I shoot Frank Miller dead.

Wait along, wait along
Wait along
Wait along

– “Do Not Forsake Me [The Ballad of High Noon]”, words by Ned Washington, music by Dmitri Tiomkin

“Do Not Forsake Me”, or “The Ballad of High Noon”, is perhaps one of the most widely known and fondly remembered theme songs of all time, but its colossal success depends on far more than a catchy tune. The ways that it was used within as well as outside of the film High Noon (Fred Zinnemann, 1952), were extremely progressive. It was tremendously influential and, as I will show, helped to popularise the use of theme songs in later years as well as to define the lyrical style that would dominate title songs in Western movies. It was also immensely effective in the way that it guided viewers' expectations of the film, helping to shape their experience of it. For fans of the Western genre it is an especially interesting work as its lyrics lay bare some of the issues and concerns most central to the genre as well as to the film at hand.
In 1952, when High Noon was released, few dramatic films featured songs. Where they did exist, they were mostly diegetic. The decision to open the film with a song that functions so overtly as a narrational device is consequently striking and its implications are diverse. However, they can, for the most part, be placed within two categories, marketing and narration.

High Noon was by no means the first film to be cross-marketed with a song or musical score. Although the first film soundtrack album, The Jungle Book, was not released until 1942, merchandising of film songs either as short-play records or sheet music had already been common practice for some years (1). In August 1929, the New York Times was quick to report:

Boundless radio has found a common denominator with the audible cinema, the theme song; and already “The Pagan Love Song”, “Evangeline”, “Broadway Melody” and “The Breakaway” are persisting through the tubes (2).
The author of this article notes that as early as the late 1910s theme songs proliferated in “silent” cinema – both as live accompaniment to film screenings and in other arenas of circulation – and cites the theme songs for Mickey (Richard Jones, 1918) and The Bluebird (Maurice Tourneur, 1918) as early examples. Russell Sanjek argues that Mickey was responsible for demonstrating to the film industry how valuable a popular song could be for promoting a film (3).
This lesson was repeated many years later when High Noon set a new standard for effective cross-promotion, and in so doing encouraged a horde of imitators. It won the Academy Award for Best Song and, according to Jonathan Groucutt, “opened the floodgates” for theme songs, initiating the “'hit-theme' mania” that had emerged in American cinema by the 1960s (4). After the success of “Do Not Forsake Me”, there was a vast increase in the number of films, especially dramatic films, to open with a theme song during the credits. Between 1950 and 1954, only 13 percent of American feature films used this device. Over the next five years the percentage grew to 22 percent and by the late 1960s this figure had risen still further to 29 percent. (5)

Tex Ritter
The biggest rise in the use of theme songs took place within the Western genre, argues Ed Buscombe, who claims that after 1952 most major Westerns opened with a theme song. He observes that this trend also resurrected the career of ex-singing-cowboy star, Tex Ritter, performer of “Do Not Forsake Me”, who found new success as a vocalist for a number of Western movie theme songs in the 1950s. (6) As one 1953 newspaper journalist opined,

Already the cycle is nobly launched, and judging from the rush around movietown to sign cowboy warblers who can give a pretty good imitation of Tex Ritter's agonised delivery of Gary Cooper's musical woes in High Noon, any picture of the Old West without such accompaniment may go begging for theatre engagements (7).
If the escalating popularity of theme songs can be partly explained by the success of High Noon, it should nevertheless be recognised that wider industrial factors underlay this trend. The drive to release theme songs through newly acquired or created recording arms of film companies had been hastened by the divorcement decrees of 1948. The severance of exhibition outlets from production companies and the loss of guaranteed revenue that these anti-monopolistic mandates caused, led production companies to seek alternate channels of gain. One of these was the expansion of their recording arms, and a more methodical cross marketing of music and film. (8) In 1951, a year before High Noon's release, a record executive argued that, “A film company must have a record arm. It could lose money, and it would still come out way ahead on the promotion of basic product.” (9) Jeff Smith describes the way this perspective influenced the release of High Noon:
UA touted the High Noon campaign as one of the biggest ever, and it features many of the components that were commonly used in later promotions, such as multiple theme recordings and co-ordinated radio exploitation... The centrepiece of the campaign was the six single releases of the film's theme song. Frankie Laine and Tex Ritter's versions, for Columbia and Decca respectively, were clearly the most important, but the tune was also recorded by Billy Keith, Lita Rose, Bill Hayes, and Fred Waring... Whereas a record promoter would seek out sales and exposure of a particular version of the theme, UA simply sought as much repetition of the tune as possible (10).
High Noon has acquired a reputation for precipitating changes in the style of film scores more generally, as well as they ways in which they were marketed. Although “Do Not Forsake Me” has, in itself, attracted considerable praise, the implications for later film music have been framed negatively by a number of musicians and critics. Some have argued that the desire to incorporate a theme that could be independently marketed took priority over the scoring of music appropriate to the film's narrative and mood. Composer Elmer Bernstein claimed that “Do Not Forsake Me” precipitated the demise of the classical film score, whilst film historian Roy M. Prendergast went so far as to argue that it “unknowingly rang the death knell for intelligent use of music in films” (11). Dorothy Horstman blamed High Noon for killing off another musical genre, the cowboy song, as the “adult Western” took precedence over singing Westerns (12). These criticisms may indeed hold some water, but at the same time High Noon represented a renaissance in the way that title songs were adapted to narrational purposes, using “Do Not Forsake Me” in a sophisticated fashion to lay out some of the important themes at the start of the film.
Before looking in some detail at the words of “Do Not Forsake Me”, and considering how the song relates to High Noon, as well as its relationship to the Western genre more generally, it is important to note that the lyrics of different versions vary substantially from one another. Like several other movie theme songs of the 1950s, such as those of The Man from Laramie (Anthony Mann, 1955) and 3:10 to Yuma (Delmer Daves, 1957), the version played in the film contains very specific narrative references that were toned down or removed in order to create a more universal tale for the release of tie-in singles. The lyrics of Frankie Laine's hit recording of “Do Not Forsake Me” were thus amended to omit all direct references to the film's villain, Frank Miller (Ian MacDonald). Ned Washington wrote the lyrics for all three of these songs and thus stands out as a figure of central importance in the development of the Western theme song during the 1950s. Generating a prolific quantity of similar material throughout this decade, notably including the theme song for Gunfight at the OK Corral (John Sturges, 1957), he played a central role in securing the success of the song's formula.

The most exceptional feature of the lyrics to the version of “Do Not Forsake Me” that opens High Noon is the extent to which it summarises the plot, even suggesting the way in which the story ends. Narrative précis, as well as invocation of specific characters and narrative events, emerged as a fully-fledged song genre in 1952, the year that saw the release of both Fritz Lang's Rancho Notorious and High Noon. Although Rancho Notorious, which used this technique, predated High Noon by several months, its theme song never achieved the same degree of fame and influence.

Perhaps the paradigmatic example of the Western theme song, “Do Not Forsake Me” outlines the main story elements, including the initiating events, the backstory, and the primary conflicts that must be played out at the film's climax. Nevertheless, the strategy allows the preservation of a remarkable level of suspense. We know what the conflicts are that will be acted out, but not the details of their development.

High Noon is built around the tense anticipation of the arrival of the nefarious Frank Miller on the noonday train. The song develops the implications of this event, hinting at the coming duel between Miller and Sheriff Will Kane (Gary Cooper) – “I must face that deadly killer” – as well as endowing Kane with an emotional depth that is less fully evident from his actions on screen. It bestows upon the film an ongoing psychological tension, heightening the drama of each minute – “Look at that big hand move along, nearin' high noon” – as well as pointing forward to the climax.

The inevitable mortal battle with Frank Miller, indicated in the song, is the physical conflict that will provide the action and spectacle intrinsic to the genre. However, from our knowledge of the archetypal persona of the Western hero, coupled with Gary Cooper's star image, we can surmise that “torn 'twixt love and duty” provides the internal conflict that will be the film's driving force. Instrumental phrases from the song are used throughout the film and these persistently remind the viewer of the corresponding lyrics. Graham Fuller writes that, “with its throbbing tune and recurring line of desperation – 'what will I do if you leave me?'... it provides a chilling motif, ebbing away at moments of despair to suggest the real reason for the torment etched on Kane's face.” (13). At several points in the film, a line from the song is heard, complete with lyrics, but only very faintly. The technique is thus less intrusive than the verses that punctuate Rancho Notorious or Gunfight at the OK Corral.

The song, at first glance, seems very simple in both structure and message. A slightly closer look exposes a work of considerable complexity. Ostensibly addressed not to the viewer but rather to Kane's wife, Amy (Grace Kelly), the song jumps back and forth between tenses. It refers to historical events, such as the backstory of the conflict between Kane and Miller, and Miller's vow of revenge on Kane for putting him in jail: “He made a vow while in State's Prison, vow'd it would be my life or his...” It also points forward to the choice that Kane will make when Miller arrives, borne out of the emotional dilemmas that pervade the body of the film: “If I'm a man I must be brave...” Its description of these is centred on the choice he must make between “love and duty”. This is a feature common to many Western films. Robert Warshow has argued that a general feature of gender relations in the Western is that

If there is a woman [the hero] loves... he finds it impossible to explain to her that there is no point in being 'against' [killing and being killed]: they belong to his world... In Western movies, men have the deeper wisdom and the women are children (14).
In “Do Not Forsake Me”, as in “OK Corral”, the woman is invoked as support, a figure of strength in the background, without whom the hero cannot succeed. She is required to facilitate the hero's success in the physical realm by bolstering his psychological strength and yet, when it comes to a choice between honourable machismo and the love of a woman, she will almost inevitably lose out: “Although you're grieving, I can't be leaving until I shoot Frank Miller dead.”
Although the song lyrics are in the first person and seemingly derive from Kane, it is no secret that they are actually performed by Tex Ritter – his contribution is prominently advertised during the opening credits. Although this establishes a distance between these words and the character of Kane, who is not in any case a character we might expect to express himself in song, the technique is significantly different from the introduction to Rancho Notorious by an omniscient narrator who withholds information. “Do Not Forsake Me” does not narrate with the benefit of hindsight, and yet the archetypal plot elements it invokes allow the viewer to extrapolate further narrative events, including the final showdown. The song appeals to our knowledge of other Western movies and in doing so it encourages us to model our expectations of the film according to generic conventions.

To précis the plot in the opening theme song may seem a curious ploy. One possible explanation of this strategy can be found in Richard Combs' identification of High Noon as representing a precise stage in the development of the Western genre. He argues that, “A developing sense of its own ritual is one of the things that defines the 'classic' Western, but also leads it to outstrip itself (as perhaps all classicisms must), and finally to dissolve itself” (15). Certainly the film schematically draws attention to its formal attributes and yet Claude Mauriac's interpretation of the pleasures that we seek in watching this genre is perhaps more satisfactory. He writes: “We love Westerns in proportion to whether they offer us just enough surprises to make us experience the pleasure of seeing images we have seen a hundred times before” (16).

In its avowal of the primary pleasures we derive from watching Western movies, and its meaningful augmentation of the experience of viewing High Noon, “Do Not Forsake Me” has secured for itself a prominent place in the pantheon of movie theme songs. The enormous contribution it has made to the heritage of Western theme songs as well as the developing art of cross-promotional marketing deserve to be remembered in the present era where such synergy has come to be taken for granted. Through its narration of universal themes within a specific tale it is a unique piece of writing that has had enduring repercussions.

© Deborah Allison, 2003


Jeff Rovin, The Signet Book of Movie Lists, NEL, New York, 1979.

New York Times, 4th August 1929.

Russell Sanjek, American Popular Music and Its Business: The First Four Hundred Years – Volume III: From 1900-1984, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1988, p. 47.

Jonathan Groucutt, “Scoring for the '60s”, The Movie, vol. 7, chapter 75, pp. 1498–1500.

Statistics given in this article are based on my survey of 2636 title sequences from American feature films of the sound period.

Ed Buscombe (ed.), BFI Companion to the Western, BFI/Andre Deutsch, London, 1991, p. 194.

Harold Hefferman, “The Minstrel is the Man of the Hour”, Baltimore Sun, July 26, 1953. Cited in Texas Jim Cooper, “Tex Ritter: His Songs and Personality Expressed the Ethos of Our West”, Films In Review, vol. 24, no 4, April 1970, p. 211.

A detailed account of the film industry's move towards diversification and conglomeration, and the resultant increase in cross-promotion of films and records can be found in Jeff Smith, The Sounds of Commerce: Marketing Popular Film Music, Columbia University Press, New York, 1998. See also Alexander Doty, “Music Sells Movies: (Re)new(ed) Conservatism in Film Marketing”, Wide Angle, vol. 10, no. 2.

Cited in Smith, 1998, p. 59.

Smith, 1998, pp. 59–60.

Russell Lack, Twenty Four Frames Under: A Buried History of Film Music, Quartet Books, London, 1997, p. 207; Roy M. Prendergast, Film Music: A Neglected Art, W.W. Norton, New York, 1977, pp. 102-3.

Dorothy Horstman, Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy, second ed., Country Music Foundation Press, Nashville, 1996, p. 331.

Graham Fuller, “High Noon”, The Movie, vol. 5, chapter 53, pp. 1052–53.

Robert Warshow, “Movie Chronicle: the Westerner”, in Gerald Mast and Marshall Cohen (eds.), Film Theory and Criticism, Oxford University Press, New York, 1974, p. 403.

Richard Combs, “High Noon”, Monthly Film Bulletin, June 1986, p. 187.

Cited in Lotte H. Eisner, Fritz Lang, Secker and Warburg, London, 1976, p. 301.

Friday, April 24, 2009

A a Revival

ONE BLOGGER that has been assumed to be a permanent feature of the annual Bloggers Universe Malaysia series is presumed "MISSING" for a week or so now. I reprise one piece of writing that's relevant to the current state of Blogosphere and the state of Raja Petra Kamaruding. I hope he maketh it to join a merry band of fellow Bloggers -- vvvvvvve call ourselves BUMmers! -- and B2B, that'sBUMmers2be! at the BUM2009 gathering soon kambing to Lake View Club on 16th May 2009 in conjunction with World Press Freedom Day. Surf to for details, butt don't tell the SpecialBrunch! -- YL, Desi

From where YL earns some kaya as Editor to top up the peanuts butter ofr his french toast!:)

Home Bloggers Buzz Raja Petra Kamarudin on Civil Disobedience
Raja Petra Kamarudin on Civil Disobedience
Bloggers Buzz
Written by Raja Petra Kamarudin

Friday, 23 January 2009 12:36

Published by Malaysia Today

22 January 2009

Civil Disobedience 101
Some have asked me about the meaning of Civil Disobedience ( It’s actually quite simple. You defy the powers-that-be, but you do it in a passive, not active, manner. You do not resist. You just do nothing. And is this not what Malaysians are good at, doing nothing?

For example, when they charged me in court and asked me to plead ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty’, I refused to enter a plea. I told the judge, “I shall not respond to the charges on the grounds that the charges are both mala fide and defective.” The judge, however, took that as a ‘not guilty’ plea.

I then raised my voice and told the judge, “I did not plead not guilty! I said I refuse to respond to the charges.” He still took that as a ‘not guilty’ plea and I now face trial.

In another earlier case, I pleaded ‘not guilty’ and the court set bail. I then refused bail and was sent to the Sungai Buloh Prison for three days. My wife came to prison at the behest of the prison authorities who were worried about my safety. Sirul and Azilah had threatened me in front of a senior prison officer, Thana, and they were worried that I might not survive prison.

I told my wife they should not have phoned her to come to prison and that I still refuse bail. Even the tears my wife shed would not move me until she told me they were throwing a party at the Selangor Club on Friday and that I was invited. Hmm…..a party. I am a softie when it comes to partying.

Okay, I told her, prison can wait. Partying comes first. I agreed she post bail and made the party that Friday. Okay, not everyone’s perfect.

Now, how do we take Civil Disobedience to the next level?

Tomorrow, at 9.00am, they will be charging 24 people in the Petaling Jaya Court for the alleged crime of ‘illegal assembly’ during an Anti-ISA Candlelight Vigil at the PJ Civic Centre on 9 November 2008. On Sunday last, they broke up a picnic that was attended by about 200 people at the same PJ Civic Centre. The police declared the picnic an illegal assembly and threatened to use force if the crowd did not disperse.

It appears like the government refuses to allow Malaysians to assemble for picnics or whatever unless they first apply for a police permit. The problem is, when you do apply for one, they will reject your application. So it is a Catch 22. You are breaking the law if you assemble without a police permit but when you apply for one they will refuse to give it to you.

Now, let us look at a hypothetical situation. This is just hypothetical mind you. I am not suggesting we actually go out and do this.

Say, this Sunday, four of us sit down on the ground holding candles in front of the PJ Civic Centre. Just four people -- not more than four people. That would be considered an illegal assembly. The police will then come to arrest us and we shall spend the night in the PJ Police Station.

We would then be brought to court and charged for participating in an illegal assembly. When the charges are read out in court and we are asked to plead ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty’, we tell the court, “Guilty and proud of it.”

Depending on the mood of the judge, we will either be fined or a jail sentence will be imposed, or both. We then refuse to pay the fine and go to jail.

The following Sunday, another four people do the sit down with candles in front of the PJ Civic Center and we go through the whole process again. Another four people will go to jail. We continue doing this until the jails are full and there is no more space to house us. As it is now the jails are already full. Sungai Buloh Prison is filed up to twice what it was built for, as are the other jails all over the country.

We keep sending four people to jail every week until they abolish or waive the ridiculous law that requires an assembly of four people to apply for a police permit.

That is what is meant as Civil Disobedience. I am not, of course, suggesting we actually do this. I am just giving you an example of Civil Disobedience, which is what Gandhi did to bring the British government down and which eventually gained independence for India.

Anyway, in the meantime, while you ponder on the above, read this item which was e-mailed to me by a close friend:

The Umno ‘Wow Factor’

A farmer named Lakbir Singh was overseeing his herd in a remote pasture in Bolehland when suddenly a brand-new BMW advanced out of a dust cloud towards him.

The driver, a young Malay man in an Armani suit, Gucci shoes, RayBan sunglasses and YSL tie, leans out the window and asks the farmer, "If I tell you exactly how many cows and calves you have in your herd, will you give me a calf?"

Lakbir looks at the man, obviously a yuppie, then looks at his peacefully grazing herd and calmly answers, "Sure, why not?"

The yuppie parks his car, whips out his Dell notebook computer, connects it to his Cingular RAZR V3 cell phone, and surfs to a NASA page on the Internet, where he calls up a GPS satellite to get an exact fix on his location which he then feeds to another NASA satellite that scans the area in an ultra-high-resolution photo.

The young man then opens the digital photo in Adobe Photoshop and exports it to an image processing facility in Hamburg, Germany. Within mere seconds, he receives an email on his Palm Pilot that the image has been processed and the data is stored. He then accesses a MS-SQL database through an ODBC connected Excel spreadsheet with email on his Blackberry and, after a few minutes, receives a response. Finally, he prints out a full-colour, 150-page report on his hi-tech, miniaturized HP LaserJet printer and finally turns to the farmer and says, "You have exactly 1,586 cows and calves."

"That's right. Well, I guess you can take one of my calves," says Lakbir.

He watches the young man select one of the animals and looks on amused as the young man stuffs it into the trunk of his car. Then Lakbir says to the young man, "Hey, if I can tell you exactly what your business is, will you give me back my calf?"

The young man thinks about it for a second and then says, "Okay, why not?"

"You're a graduate from Oxford and a Member of Parliament for Umno," says Lakbir.

"Wow! That's correct," exclaims the yuppie with the customary Umno's Wow Factor, "But how did you guess that?"

"No guessing required," answered Lakbir. "You showed up here even though nobody called you; you want to get paid for an answer I already knew, and to a question I never asked. You tried to show me how much smarter you are, and you don't know a thing about cows. This is a herd of sheep. Now give me back my dog."

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

BUM2009 Is At Da Starter's Blog!

***ABOUT BUMmers, Surf to da new home form today: -- YL aka Desi saying Adieu for now, see you on May 16, 2009 at Da Lake View Club IN PERSON!:)

Home About Us April 13, 2009...7:43 am
Bloggers’ Universe Malaysia (BUM) 2009 Takes Off at Starter’s Blog!
Jump to Comments

KUALA LUMPUR: About five weeks from now, BUM2009 will tap-dance in again at The Lake View Club, Subang Jaya, and the Organising Committee is giving you good notice to keep yourself free for a date at Da Bloggers’ Event of Da Year!

And we will have an extra session on top of last year’s two as we believe the new media scene has attracted a lot of interest after its power and influence and impact at the March 8, 2008 General Elections were duely noted by many quarters, both political and social.

Mark Saturday, May 16, 2009 in your diary. The BUM2009 Organising Committee has gathered at the Starter’s Block, and with these vibrant members all fired up to make the Event memorable for all BUMmers, with many who served at last year’s BUM2008 — does this Logo strike a chord with you? –


making a re-apprearance.

Chairman: Sdr YL Chong aka Desiderata

Co-chairman: Sdr Ahirudin Attan aka rockybru

Bahasa Malaysia Chair: Sdri Helen Ang

Treasurer: Sdri Helen Hoh

COMMITTEE MEMBERS: Liew Hui Mei, ES Shankar aka donplaypuks, Capt Yuosf Ahmad aka ancient mariner, Dr SM Yeoh aka maverickysm, Chris Chew aka mob1900, Frances Yee aka primrose.

ADVISER: Dr Lim Teck Ghee


BUM2009 will feature the following:

THEME: 4th and 5th Estates — on Collision Course?

(1) Morning Session’s Topic:

The Media - Civil Society’s Perspectives

(2) Afternoon Session’s Topic:

This session will feature mainly Bloggers writing in Bahasa Malaysia
and the Chair coordinating this will soon announce the topic — Stay tuned!

(3) Evening Session’s Topic:

Has The Old Media Failed Civil Society?


The BUM2009 OC — that’s for Organising Committee! – will try to keep the Entrance charge as low as possible, like maybe at last year’s BUM2008’s at RM50 per person, or an additional RM10 as there is an extra session this year! Of course, it’s FREE for our OC for all their hard work, and for the esteemed speakers, who cometh with special roles like lending their minds and thrust-and-parry with all comers during the entertaining Q and A session.

PS: One morsel of information I must leave with you before I temporarily take leave: Desi heard on the grapevine for the May 16, 2009 dinner, THREE LAMBS are headed for the Warren Buffet’s table at da Lake View Club, Subang Jaya!

Details of the programme will be posted within a week from now.


YL Chong,
BUM2009 Organising Committee
13 April 2009

Monday, March 9, 2009

I Have Been Serving Some TEAsers...4BUM2009:)


Monday, March 09, 2009

A 1,000 apOLOGIES for too much C&Pastrying...

But it's better to "borrow" some flowers of wisdom than display one's own vain attempt at clear thinking. I always strive to originate some pieces, but we all have our downtimes. Especially when one had to run around to do the "needful" playing diplomat, DAN cari-cari makan-makan, the former role I learnt about two decades ago. I wanted to test if that fine art of doing the cocktails circuit is still wit' Desi -- we will be able to tell when BUM2009 cometh around.

The latter role sees Desi supplementing a writer's mousey plain bread&butter wit' some Kaya!

Please keep Saturday, May 16, 2009 FREE >>> No, the Event -- some arrogant ones claim it's gonna be the Bloggers' Event of Da Year! -- is not free of charge, but vvvvvvve of BUM2009 Organising Committee will keep the Entrance charge as low as possible, like at BUM2008's RM50 per person. Of course, it's FREE for our esteemed speakers, and some VIP Guests who cometh with a small ***donation:) And that's where ***Desi's diplomatic skills cometh in BIG!:)

Doing some self-trumpeting, surf to: NOW! (OOoops, you are already hear!:) So meanwhile, while I hone my PR skills in more ways than one, please share this well writ piece for Rumination. I know many are R&R on this "holy"day, you can do more than Rest&Recreate! Mondaes are not blue when you put on your thinking cap. Even non-French.

Many streams lead to one river; many rivers lead to the Ocean, and Desi's humming UNCHAINED MELODY. I wonder if I'd meet that Lady in Red at the Butterfly Valley? If you do not understand even 30% of what's written so far, it's alright. You call on sisdar at -- she may oblige if you sing her praises; I get lots of past&PRESENTries from this sweet Ipohlang! And her significant other, John:):) That's the whole purpose of writHing a Blockedpost -- first and foremost, Entertain myself; if my ER are enterained, that's a BONUS! Hence, if thou art a non-Blogger, get on de BBandwagon, pronto!:)


The above has been a double Cut&Pastry from this lazy BUMmer's on kitchen, so if you wanna taste more, please get off thy BUM and surf to:

BN has its work cut out

KUALA LUMPUR, March 9 – Yesterday marked the first anniversary of Malaysia’s historic 12th general election, when Malaysians voted in the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) in five states and denied the ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN) its customary two-thirds parliamentary majority.

TEAser wan:

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

BUM2009 Making Headway to Starter's Blog!

ONE RECENT SUNDAY for lack of something more stimulating to ruminate on, Desi wrote:
TEAser Sundae Offering: BUM2009 in the making...
and something's brewing in SoPo Blogosphere so BIG you can rest assured BUM2009 will be fully booked a week or two before COB.

Meanwhile, a BUM2007 and BUM2008 star attraction makes interesting reading, published by a mainstream media paper, so who says without a doubt it's 100% justification to have MSM completely boycotted? And did you notice there is a SCHISM -- ah, Desi likes strange words! -- between once lovers in SoPo blogosphere?

Is there no room for ameliorated love affairs -- maybe Valentine can help shoot its Cupid's arrows at SoPo*Phere? (The * stands for Blogo ok!:( Questions, questions, questions: Ah, these are some of the issues to be taken up -- mayhaps -- at BUM2009; art thou kambing? I heard that Three lambs are following Mary around at the vicinity of the Lake View Club:::

********************** meanW'ILE, hear's aMore education! ******************

Home The Blogs The Corridors of Power

RPK takes on...everybody

IF YOU WANNA BY BEE-SYBODY some aMore...:) -- Desi, March 3, 2009

*********************************So on a kaypohish vein, on Tuesday March 3, 2009 -- which is Boycot MSM die, if you still remember! Me, I am wit' MORRIE aMore! --

Hear's to The Starter's Blog for BUM2009!

Rockybru, being All-Blogs Interim Council Prez, and I have agreed to lead in organising BUM2009, gathering a band of Bloggers in their intrepid individual capacities -- in association with the Centre for Policy Initiatives (CPI) second time around.

Date: Saturday May 16, 2009 (Traditionally this Annual event is to be held -- in the minds of the Initiators -- in May as World Press Fredom Day falls in this poetic month, and desi has that bent!:)

Surf to and for the history...)

Venue: That Club in SJ somewhere where the lambs are roaming free and plenty until they land up at Warren Buffet's table, and Desi&Co aren't no vegans! Cyber hooligans to some ministerial minds, or vagabonds to others more poetic, and yet more likely "unemployed" writers, in some Menteri's eyes again! -- some even Jamesy mayhaps! --but all APs are cateredfor.

Organising Committee BUM2009: Most of the familiar faces in BUM2007 and BUM2008 OCs will be back --they aweways come back for more, like Oliver/Olivia twisties -- and as OC chairman, Desi has invited a few Blogger mateys to join the bandwagon to spread the weight around -- on a slimming diet, anyone?

Adieu PS: So dear ER, Stay tuned for MORE ON BUM2009, this coming Sundae, InsyaAllah!

posted by desiderata at 12:45 PM