Archive for category Media

Do the four MCA/Gerakan Ministers agree with the four-day remand of Kuan Yau for his “vulgar, vituperative and vitriolic” Facebook posting?

I am not surprised by “Superman” Hew Kuan Yau’s arrest by the police, as this had been the yearning of MCA and Gerakan leaders since Kuan Yau’s appearance on the ceramah circuit exposing MCA and Gerakan hypocrisies whether in government or outside.

But I am very surprised and even shocked that Kuan Yaw has remanded for four days for his Facebook posting against the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his wife Datin Rosman Mansor.

This is an open-and-shut case which does not justify any single day of remand, unless we have the most inefficient, incompetent and unprofessional police force, which I do not believe.

This leaves only one explanation left – a gross abuse of powers to detain Kuan Yau, a way to punish Kuan Yau for being a fierce and popular critic of MCA and Gerakan in the ceramah circuit in the past few years.

Kuan Yau’s four-day remand may warm the cockles of the hearts of MCA and Gerakan leaders and die-hards, but if they understand justice and fair play, they know it is very wrong to abuse powers just to take vengeance against anybody. Read the rest of this entry »

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UMNO propagandists concocting a third demonization campaign against me, alleging that I am stooge of Singapore PAP as they found that two earlier lies about me being “anti-Malay” and “anti-Islam” are not as effective as they had hoped

In the past three months, I had never in my life been so “famous” in the UMNO/BN owned or controlled mainstream media, as almost every day, my picture would appear and there would be a write-up about me, appearing either in New Straits Times, Utusan Malaysia, Berita Harian or TV3 – all trying to put in the worst possible light.

There was for instance a standing instruction for decades in one of the major newspaper groups that my picture was never to appear in their dailies.

Why have I become so “famous” in the past three months when for over 50 years of my political life, I had been mostly blacked out by the UMNO/BN owned or controlled mainstream media, making me into a “non-person” as in Stalinist Soviet Union – with all the concoctions, falsehoods and lies about me?

This is really all not about me, but about the UMNO propagandists, cybertroopers and leadership – their fear that they might be ousted from Putrajaya in the forthcoming 14th General Election expected this year, probably in September.

If UMNO feels strong and invincible, they would not waste time on their political competitors, whom until recently they regard as “lightweights” and unable to threaten their political power base.

It is precisely because they had a fright of their lives in the 13th General Election, when they were nearly sent to the Opposition benches as UMNO/BN had only won 47% of the popular vote but because of the undemocratic and unjust redelineation of constituencies which gave them control of 60 per cent of the parliamentary seats, that enabled Datuk Seri Najib Razak to continue as the Prime Minister of Malaysia, albeit the first minority Prime Minister in Malaysian history.

In the 14th General Election – which is going to the “mother of all general elections in Malaysia” – UMNO leaders know that despite general public disappointments and disillusionment with the electoral process, there is nonetheless the great possibility that UMNO/BN may be voted out of power, UMNO/BN leaders are pulling out all the stops to carry out unethical, dishonest, unprincipled and unscrupulous tactics and stratagems against the Opposition, such as the politics of lies, hate and fear to defame DAP and myself as anti-Malay and anti-Islam so as to frighten the Malay electorate. Read the rest of this entry »

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Utusan Malaysia a real disgrace to Malaysian journalism – not a word of my reply to Najib’s “Ali Baba” attack on DAP although it devoted almost half a page to Najib’s attack

Utusan Malaysia is a real disgrace to Malaysian journalism.

There is not a word of my reply to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s “Ali Baba” attack on the DAP although it devoted almost half a page in words and pictures to Najib’s attack on me.

Utusan Malaysia virtually carried in full Najib’s speech in Sindumin, Sabah on Saturday repeating the lie that I had reached a secret deal with Tun Mahathir where Mukhriz will be the Prime Minister and I the Deputy Prime Minister, and using that to mount further attacks on me, alleging that I would be the “most powerful individual”, that the Deputy Prime Minister would be deciding who is to be the Prime Minister if Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu succeeds in ousting UMNO/BN from Putrajaya and the Federal Government; and that this is a “ali baba” arrangement.

I have been in Malaysian politics for 51 years, but I had never asked any of the first five Prime Ministers – Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein, Tun Mahathir and Tun Abdullah – to see a psychiatrist, until yesterday when I asked Najib to see a psychiatrist.

This is because Najib is building a monumental structure of arguments based on a Big Lie – that Tun Mahathir and I had reached a secret deal where Mukhriz would be Prime Minister and I would be Deputy Prime Minister if Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu wins Putrajaya in the 14GE. There is no such agreement, as I had never discussed with Mahathir the questions as to who would be Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister if Pakatan Harapan and Bersatu defeat UMNO/BN in the 14th GE – and the purported secret meeting between Mahathir and myself on 3rd December 2016 never took place.

I challenge Najib to name the place and time of this so-called Dec. 3, 2016 meeting where Mahathir and I struck a secret deal that Mukhriz would be Prime Minister and I the Deputy Prime Minister? Read the rest of this entry »


Most ambitious “Black Ops” to destroy DAP in four decades, involving Ministers and the Prime Minister himself

We are seeing the most ambitious “black ops” operation by the UMNO/BN leaders and propagandists to destroy the DAP in four decades, employing the triple politics of fear, hate and lies, involving Ministers and even the Prime Minister himself.

When the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak tweeted last Wednesday, “Lim Kit Siang is Pakatan’s de facto leader. DAP should stop trying to hide it. Voters know DAP has the most opposition seats and Lim Kit Siang calls the shots”, it was all part of the “Black Ops” campaign to create panic and fear among the Malays, seeking to make them believe that if UMNO loses, I will become the Prime Minister of Malaysia and that I am anti-Malay and anti-Islam.

When the UMNO Minister for Rural and Regional Development, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, issued the infamous five-paragraph statement with more than ten lies to attack me, it was again part of the “Black Ops” campaign to destroy the image of DAP.

Yesterday in Malacca, I pointed out the ten lies in the first two paragraphs of Ismail Sabri’s five-paragraph statement. There are at least another five lies in his remaining three paragraphs. No wonder, Ismail Sabri dared not accept my invitation to a joint media conference with me to expose his lies. Read the rest of this entry »

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Has Ismail Sabri nothing to say when I charged him of making ten lies in a short five-paragraph statement attacking me?

Has the Rural and Regional Development Minister, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, nothing to say when I charged him of making ten lies in a short five-paragraph statement attacking me?

In response to his statement, which deserves to go into the “Guinness Book of Records” for telling ten lies in five paragraphs, I challenged him to appear in a joint media conference for me to point out the 10 lies in his five-paragraph statement.

But Ismail Sabri has kept a thunderous silence.

I will not let this matter rest and will pursue Ismail Sabri even in Parliament for his “ten lies in five paragraphs”, as he must accept responsibility for his statement although I do not think Ismail had written the statement – but he allowed his name to be used.

Is Ismail Sabri going to apologise for these 10 lies in five paragraphs? Read the rest of this entry »

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Journalism a sacred duty to uphold truth, not a mere tool of the regime to perpetuate lies and falsehoods, nor a political implement to dumb down Malaysians in order to stay in power

I would like to acknowledge the statement issued by Geramm (Gerakan Media Marah), a loose coalition of media practitioners and journalists, entitled ‘Media is not the enemy’ in defence of a fellow journalist who had an altercation with me during a press conference welcoming Datuk Zaid Ibrahim into the DAP on Monday.

The journalist who identified himself as coming from TV3, had asked if I would be speaking about the BMF and forex scandals differently if former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was not within the opposition ranks.

Mahathir, who was seated next to me at the presser was visibly amused at the question. The amusement increased as soon as the person said that he came from TV3, inviting jeers and laughter from the audience around him. Even other fellow journalists at the event did not voice out any protest against the so called altercation nor the jeering by the crowd later.

Perhaps because it is well understood that the DAP and the rest of the opposition has been the regular target of the traditional media owned and controlled by UMNO for as long as we can remember. TV3 in particular has become the main tool to paint the DAP as being anti-Malay and anti-Islam, demonizing our leaders with every other lies and falsehoods you can think of, without ever giving a right of reply. Read the rest of this entry »

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It flaunts the power but also advertises the failure of UMNO’s Goebbels in using Nazi Big Lies to demonise me as power-hungry, anti-Malay and anti-Islam

Was it a sheer coincidence that the Utusan Malaysia, New Straits Times and Berita Harian today all reported an article entitled “Apa salahnya DAP jadi TPM” which appeared on online portal Malaysiakini yesterday, and all omitted that it was an article written by Zulhazmi Shariff, Ahli Jawatankuasa Biro Guaman DAP Kedah.

This was power play at the most blatant, someone – who is actually UMNO’s Goebbels – who had the power to direct the three UMNO-owned “mainstream newspapers” what to print, how to print, and what to omit!

For most of the past five decades of my political life, I was virtually a non-person to the UMNO-owned and controlled “mainstream media”, never reported about or mentioned except on occasions to demonise me or to put me in the worst possible light.

But for the past four weeks, I had become quite a “regular” in these three UMNO-owned “mainstream media” which had treated me as a “persona non grata” – not because these three “mainstream media” have suddenly realized that the journalists’ craft is to tell the truth, but for the UMNO propaganda masterminds to set me up so that UMNO leaders, propagandists and cybertroopers could discredit, destroy and demolish me.

They were modern-day Malaysian practitioners of the Nazi craft immortalized by Hitler’s Propaganda Minister, Joseph Goebbels who said the infamous words – “if you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Mainstream media practitioners should stop their hypocrisy belly-aching about “fake news” on social media when they are themselves the worst purveyor of false news

Mainstream media practitioners should stop their hypocrisy belly-aching about “fake news” on social media when they are themselves the worst purveyor of false news.

Two days ago, one mainstream media admitted purveying “fake news” about Ketua Umum PKR Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in its articles in 2013 alleging that Anwar was a dishonest politician involved in money-laundering activities, including giving RM50 million to the late Karpal Singh to fix judges.

This same mainstream media was recently purveying the “fake news that I had met Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad on Dec. 3 last year and “sealed a deal” that Mukhriz Mahathir would become prime minister and I would become Deputy Prime Minister.

Despite my denial, this mainstream media continued to carry reports on this “fake news”.

Yet this mainstream media had the temerity to conduct a campaign against “false news” in the social media, with an major article entitled “DISTINGUISHING BETWEEN REAL AND FAKE NEWS” on New Year’s Day and another entitled “Non-truths must be treated with contempt” today.

What moral high ground do these mainstream media practitioners possess when they are equally guilty of creating or purveying “fake news” in the mainstream media? Read the rest of this entry »

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Lawyers instructed to look into possibility of instituting legal action against New Straits Times for its lies in its report today: “DAP’s ploy to secure DPM post”

I have instructed my lawyers to look into the possibility of instituting legal action against New Straits Times (NST) for its lies in its report today: “DAP’s ploy to secure DPM post”.

Among other things, the NST report said that I met Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad on Dec. 3 and “sealed a deal that Mukhriz would become prime minister with Kit Siang as his deputy”.

This is total figment of imagination, as I never met Mahathir, whether on Dec. 3 or before to “seal a deal” on the question of PM or DPM if UMNO/Barisan Nasional is ousted from Putrajaya in the 14th General Election. In fact, I had never at any time discussed such a question with Mahathir.

The report “DAP’s ploy to secure DPM post” is pure fantasy. Read the rest of this entry »

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Guardian ranked second most secure online news site

Alex Hern
16 December 2016

The listing, produced by the Freedom of the Press Foundation, was topped by the US site The Intercept

The Guardian has been listed as the second most secure news publication on the web, according to a ranking produced by the American non-profit Freedom of the Press Foundation.

Points were awarded for supporting technologies which protect the privacy and security of visitors, with a focus on using HTTPS, a web protocol that allows for encrypted connections.

The ranking was topped by the US news site The Intercept, created by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. It gained the highest score of A+.

The Guardian, rated as A- along with TechCrunch and ProPublica, scored highly for having a valid HTTPS version of its website, and for defaulting to that connection for all visitors. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Malaysian Political Cartoonist on Facing His Fears, and Prison, for Art

New York Times
NOV. 29, 2016

HONG KONG — When protesters disrupted an art exhibition by Zulkiflee Anwar Ulhaque, a political cartoonist, at the George Town Literary Festival in Malaysia on Saturday, he assumed that the police would want his help identifying those responsible.

Instead, said Mr. Zulkiflee, who goes by the name Zunar, he was questioned by the police, detained for a day and informed that he was under investigation for producing cartoons that purportedly defamed Prime Minister Najib Razak.

It was not the first time Mr. Zulkiflee, who already faces nine charges of sedition and is barred from leaving the country, has courted trouble with his pen. His cartoons frequently target Mr. Najib, who is accused of taking millions of dollars from a state investment fund. Mr. Najib has faced widespread calls to resign, most recently at an anticorruption demonstration this month that drew tens of thousands in Kuala Lumpur, the capital.

In an interview, Mr. Zulkiflee, 54, discussed how social media has become an increasingly important channel for political dissent in Malaysia, and why he continues to use his art to investigate corruption and injustice without dwelling too much on the risks. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysian editors charged with ‘intent to annoy’ after reporting on 1MDB

Oliver Holmes South-east Asia correspondent
Friday 18 November 2016

Amnesty says hauling of Malaysiakini journalists before specially convened ‘cyber court’ is the latest move to stifle non-government media

The co-founders of an independent news website that has reported extensively on a corruption scandal involving Malaysia’s prime minister, Najib Razak, have been charged with offences including “intent to annoy”.

Facing up to one year in jail, the editors appeared before a recently set up “special cyber court” in Kuala Lumpur on Friday. Human Rights Watch said the use of the court was part of a strategy aimed at “shutting down the vibrant and diverse online news environment.”

The charges relate to a video posted on the Malaysiakini website of sacked ruling party member Khairuddin Abu Hassan criticising the attorney general at a press conference for being close with cabinet ministers, which he argued would undermine his independence to investigate government corruption.

The Najib scandal emerged in July 2015 when media reports said investigators had found that hundreds of millions of dollars from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) state fund was transferred into the prime minister’s bank accounts.

But attorney general Mohamed Apandi Ali closed all domestic investigations in January, clearing Najib and saying $681m transferred into his personal bank account was a gift from the royal family in Saudi Arabia.

Malaysiakini’s editor-in-chief, Steven Gan, and co-founder, Premesh Chandran, have faced repeated harassment from Najib’s supporters, including when hundreds of protesters tried to forcibly shut down their offices earlier in November. Read the rest of this entry »


In defence of Malaysiakini

Kee Thuan Chye
4 Nov 2016

In all its years functioning as a responsible media organisation, Malaysiakini has been doing the right thing. As a former journalist, I have watched its progress through the years and can vouch for its steadfastness in adhering to the ethics and principles of journalism.

But it is now being investigated for carrying out activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy.

This is totally absurd.

That it should be singled out to be persecuted by the Malaysian authorities is a testament of how deep into the mud of absurdity our country’s leaders are pushing Malaysia into.

Our leaders are going mad. Read the rest of this entry »

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In Malaysia, Humor Is No Laughing Matter

By Sarah Hucal
US News
Aug. 16, 2016

A political cartoonist’s court case raises questions about this Asian nation’s limits on expression.

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – His office has been raided, his employees arrested and his books banned. His last publisher worked at night, unwilling to take a sample of his previous work, lest it be discovered. Yet political cartoonist Zulkiflee Anwar Ulhaque, known to most as Zunar, refuses to put down his pens, providing cartoon commentary on the Malaysian government.

Zunar has been charged with nine counts of Malaysia’s Sedition Act for social media posts criticizing the Federal Court’s decision to uphold the sodomy conviction of Anwar Ibrahim, the ruling party’s main political rival. Yet, despite facing a possible 43 years of jail time, the award-winning cartoonist continues to encourage what he says is the safest and most-powerful form of protest: laughter. “There’s no law to stop you from laughing,” points out the cartoonist during an interview in his office in the Malaysian capital.

The cover of his latest book portrays Prime Minister Najib Razak as a swashbuckling pirate. The prime minister is shown wielding a bag of 2.6 billion Malaysian ringgit, representing the $731 million the U.S. Justice Department alleges he received illicitly from the public investment fund he oversees.

Najib has denied wrongdoing and maintains the money was a gift from an unnamed Saudi donor. Read the rest of this entry »

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After resignation of Mustapha Kamil as NST group editor over 1MDB global scandal, who is the next journalist of mainstream media who will take a stand for integrity, truth, transparency and good governance?

After the resignation of Mustapha Kamil as New Straits Times group editor over the 1MDB global scandal at the end of last month, who is the next journalist of the mainstream media, whether print or electronic, who will take a stand for integrity, truth, transparency and good governance?

In his Facebook posting on May 31, Mustapha said he had received numerous private messages enquiring why he opted to leave New Straits Times early, and he related “the final moments” before he tendered my resignation “from a place I had until then treated as my second home”.

He wrote:

“On the morning of April 25th I walked into the CEO’s room with my resignation letter in hand. We sat and talked about my wish for a good one hour where naturally, the CEO enquired why I had wanted to do so.

“The CEO is a chartered accountant, a man who took his job very seriously, one who is adept with numbers and besides heading the company, someone whom I also considered a friend…

“There were two things I related to him that morning. First, just as he, a chartered accountant, would not hesitate to qualify a set of flawed accounts, signing each of them not only by his name, but also by the ethics enshrined within the professional body in which he was a member, I too take journalism ethics seriously.

“In my line of work, there is this element called the ‘truth discipline’. It is one that requires a journalist to be correct, right from the spelling of names of persons or places, to all the reports he must file. His responsibility is first to the truth, by which he must then guide society in navigating the path they had chosen.

“Second, I told him that I had weighed the situation for as long as I could but when an American newspaper, headquartered somewhere in Lower Manhattan in New York, wrote a story that got nominated for the coveted Pullitzer Prize, about an issue that happened right under my nose, I began to seriously search my conscience and asked myself why was I in journalism in the first place. Read the rest of this entry »


The story that is dividing Malaysia’s media

Listening Post | 19 Apr 2016
Al Jazeera

For much of the past year, the biggest news story in Malaysia has been the so-called ‘1MDB’ corruption scandal – a story of millions of dollars of public money allegedly funnelled into the bank accounts of Prime Minister Najib Razak.

The online investigative magazine Sarawak Report broke the story last June and many in the mainstream media, who have links to the government, were slow to follow up.

Only a small number of online outlets, such as Malaysiakini, followed the corruption investigation closely. But the government is keen to keep this story out of the public eye. The Listening Post spoke to Malaysiakini editor Steven Gan about the 1MDB scandal, the limitations of Malaysia’s mainstream media and the growing threat to online freedom of the press.

Steven Gan, editor-in-chief of the Malaysiakini website, speaks about the 1MDB scandal, and the growing threat to online freedom press [Will Yong/ Al Jazeera]

The Listening Post: The corruption scandal swirling around the prime minister has been a huge news story in Malaysia. What is the significance of this story? How much has it dominated the news and what impact is it having?
Read the rest of this entry »

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The Panama Papers’ Sprawling Web of Corruption

by The Editorial Board
New York Times
APRIL 5, 2016

The first reaction to the leaked documents dubbed the Panama Papers is simply awe at the scope of the trove and the ingenuity of the anonymous source who provided the press with 11.5 million documents — 2.6 terabytes of data — revealing in extraordinary detail how offshore bank accounts and tax havens are used by the world’s rich and powerful to conceal their wealth or avoid taxes.

Then comes the disgust. With more than 14,000 clients around the world and more than 214,000 offshore entities involved, Mossack Fonseca, the Panama-based law firm whose internal documents were exposed, piously insists it violated no laws or ethics. But the questions remain: How did all these politicians, dictators, criminals, billionaires and celebrities amass vast wealth and then benefit from elaborate webs of shell companies to disguise their identities and their assets? Would there have been no reckoning had the leak not occurred?

And then the core question: After these revelations, will anything change? Many formal denials and pledges of official investigations have been made. But to what degree do the law and public shaming still have dominion over this global elite? A public scarred by repeated revelations of corruption in government, sports and finance will demand to know. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Panama Papers: Here’s What We Know

by Liam Stack
New York Times
APRIL 4, 2016

A group of global news organizations published articles this week based on a trove of leaked confidential documents from a law firm in Panama. They exposed how some of the world’s most powerful people were said to have used offshore bank accounts to conceal their wealth or avoid taxes.

The documents, known as the “Panama Papers,” named international politicians, business leaders and celebrities in a web of unseemly financial transactions, according to the articles, and raised questions about corruption in the global financial system. Many of the figures named in the leak have denied in the strongest terms that they had broken any laws.

This explainer has been tracking significant developments resulting from the disclosures. Among them:

• The prime minister of Iceland, Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson, resigned Tuesday.

• Gonzalo Delaveau Swett, the president of Transparency Chile, a branch of a global anti-corruption group, stepped down on Monday. Read the rest of this entry »

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How a Cryptic Message, ‘Interested in Data?,’ Led to the Panama Papers

by Nicola Clark
New York Times
APRIL 5, 2016

PARIS — The leak of millions of private financial documents linking scores of the world’s rich and powerful to a secretive Panamanian law firm peddling in shell companies and offshore bank accounts began more than a year ago with a cryptic message to a German newspaper from an anonymous whistle-blower.

“Hello, this is John Doe,” the source wrote to the Süddeutsche Zeitung, a Munich-based newspaper that had worked on several investigations into tax evasion and money-laundering scandals. “Interested in data?”

“We’re very interested,” replied Bastian Obermayer, a veteran of several investigations into financial scandals. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia’s government silencing dissent

Ross Tapsell, ANU
East Asia Forum
30 March 2016

The current scandal embroiling Prime Minister Najib Razak has led the Malaysian government to crack down on press freedoms. But a restricted mainstream Malaysian media has not stopped the publishing online of information on the ongoing corruption scandal surrounding the Prime Minister and 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). It remains to be seen whether Najib’s crackdown will secure his position or whether the media will help unseat him.

Earlier this year, Thomas Carothers from the Carnegie Endowment of International Peace described our current times as a ‘paradox’. Despite rapid and transformative advances in communications and information technology allowing for greater freedom of expression, the number of democracies today is basically no greater than it was at the start of the century. How has the ‘paradox’ unfolded in Malaysia?

Malaysia’s online media is not exempt from legal and state pressures, but former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad’s decision in 1996 not to regulate or censor the internet has allowed Malaysia’s online media to become a relatively more open and vibrant space.

Malaysia’s internet penetration rate is now at 68 per cent of the population and well over 80 per cent in urban areas. At the same time, newspaper circulation has decreased in government-owned newspapers such as Utusan Malaysia, The Star, The New Straits Times and Berita Harian. Print media circulation is dropping in most countries worldwide where internet penetration is rising. In Malaysia this has been fuelled by the reality that many Malaysians are tired of government-sponsored messages and are reaching for alternatives. Read the rest of this entry »

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