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6/12/2006

a dangerous combination -internet and freedom of speech

Freedom of expression is bad. It allows anyone to take potshot at anyone at will. Look at what Mahathir is doing to Badawi. Worst still is freedom of expression and internet, a very dangerous combination. Humans, being what they are, everyone is a combination of a host of biases and historical baggages that he grew up with. And anything, any issues, especially govt statements and policies, are going to elicit all kinds of responses. The good are not going to say much. The silent majority will just remain silent. Only the vocal minority who have something nasty to say will have their voices heard, loud and clear. In the past, when information was controlled, when the media was controlled, there was only one voice talking down. Nothing allowed to talk back unless vetted and found agreeable. Today, anything spoken, no matter how innocent or how clever, will receive an equal amount of brickbats from all quarters. And the favourite targets of such brickbats are celebrities, business honchos and, yes, yes, the govt, the MPs and senior officials. When they are not careful, or even very careful, they will still get it. Splurge...shit coming from everywhere. There is no longer comfort in authority. Everything can be ridiculed and every policy can be poked with millions of holes. Before the advent of internet and the freeing of expression, stupid policies and rubbish talks could still get away and the originators still appear high and lofty, looking like a smart alec. No mistakes were broadcast or exposed. Now they cannot run away. They can be made to look so ridiculous, so fallacious, so ah ah... This is the age of the internet and cyberspace, and freedom of speech. Maybe, huh, maybe, it is better to control the media and freedom of speech before it gets too dangerous.

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