Monday, January 17, 2011

Utusan is silly!

My first impression is absolute absurdity! The way Utusan Malaysia treated the president of National Union of Journalists (NUJ) by conducting an in-house interrogation and confining to 'house arrest' is unbelievable!

Just because Hata Wahari made an open-and-common statement about how mainstream newspapers are losing revenue from lower circulation as the result of playing too much politics, he is condemned like a traitor to the company and made a subject of domestic inquiry.

For Utusan to impose such a punitive action which many believe would lead to his sacking, the Umno-owned newspaper company is defying Hata's rights to voice out his concern over the dwindling newspaper circulation, reduced profit from advertisement and shrinking readership.

His concern was not only for Utusan but for other newspapers like Berita Harian, New Straits Times and others which, over the mushrooming of new newspapers and e-media tools have saw profit took a tumble. Too much of bias political news and politic-related substance, it seems, is shunning readers and advertisers.

Some people also accused Hata of inclining towards the Opposition but I personally dont think so. Although Lim Kit Siang and news portals such as Malaysiakini and Free Malaysia Today (which are very critical of the government) support what he said, what Hata said was very constructive.

Members of any organisation depend heavily on their respective unions to secure a better wage, benefit and other remunerations. So, when a union chief expressed something like that, it means he was worried about the future of Utusan should annual revenue keeps going down. This will directly give adverse impact on their salaries, promotion and other perks.

However, it is sad to note that rather than taking care of the business and ensuring its growth for the benefit of shareholders and workers, some newspaper companies today pull a lot of stunts in politics. Readers got easily blase.

They rather sell sentiment to meet the demand of certain politicians, and I think the government of Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak should realise that whether this pro-BN newspapers fill up their space with party news or not, they still support the legitimate government.

So, it is time for the government helps looking at their coffers as it will warranty their survival and the plight of their employees. Treating people like Hata in such a manner shows how much some employers are anti-union.

And believe it or not, I was one of NUJ office bearers during the early 1990s, during which some of my colleagues - no matter how outstanding there were in journalism - were sidelined and denied promotions for being active union committee members.

I also see the trend in Cuepacs and other unions. No, I am not accusing anybody of being anti-union but these are the facts that stay.

Many companies play politics too but not to the expense of their employees. For newspaper operators, its good to stay in the political stream as long as you dont have to sacrifice their rights to better wage and benefits. If the business goes down, not only will the workers have to face belt-tightening measures, their political master will also feel the pinch!

27 comments:

observer said...

circulation down

readership down

revenue down

profit down

in the end, some workers will be laid and eventually the company will have to close shop.

but dont worry, umno is there to salvage them, the govt can pump money to ensure the newspapers that carry their balls survive.

that is how and what our mainstream media is all about.

kreekk said...

yes, hata was criticizing the mainstream newspapers, not utusan alone. what he said is right. i think utusan will be happy to see its circulation shrinking to 20,000 a day as long as its political master protect them!

kamalakawa said...

most employers hate union, bro. i agree that those performing workers will not get promotion if they are active in trade union. as u said, they will be sidelined for championing the rights of workers. in only happens in malaysia and a few conservative countries. in most countries, trade unionists are well-respected for contributing to the harmonious of the industry. malaysia is still lagging behind in this aspect as unions are still regarded as a threat to industry.

harith zapin said...

pada hemat saya, kritikan hata adalah satu yang baik, bukan saja untuk akhbar arus perdana tetapi juga kepada kerajaan.

walaupun sekuat mana pun kita menyokong kerajaan, keutamaan perlu diberikan kepada pencapaian pernaigaan.

apa gunanya main politik jika perniagaan merosot dan pekerja menjadi mangsa.

siapa yang akan bertanggungjawab?

punggok said...

walaupun hata bukan wartawan kelas 1 tetapi dia memimpin kesatuan dengan baik. dia amat mementingkan keuntungan syarikat daripada politik kerana utusan mempunyai ribuan pekerja yang bergantung penuh kepada laporan tahunannya. jika rugi, faedah sampingan seperti x-gratia mungkin dihapuskan.

pengurusan utusan perlu bertolak ansur dalam hal ini dan sedia menerima teguran yang membina. jika kita ingin produk kita dijual dengan laris dan mempunyai ramai pelanggan, ia harus dipelbagaikan. kurangkan politik dan hidangkan pembaca dengan bahan lain yang lebih menarik.

pembaca sudah muak dengan berita politik yang terlalu banyak dalam akhbar, sama ada yang pro-kerajaan mahupun pro-pembangkang.

memang benar akhbar arus perdana dijadikan alat propaganda kerajaan tetapi kita juga perlu berpada-pada.

lainlah kalau kita tidak ada pekerja!

lee marvin said...

sack him la, then find solution in court.

that also i have to tell u people aa?

Anonymous said...

ok what. politic is more important than profit. a pat on the back from the political master is better than providing better benefit to employees.

ok la.

Anonymous said...

www.freemalaysiakini.com

pls spread it out....

Anonymous said...

utusan anti union!

staf utusan said...

orang lain pun masuk kesatuan sekerja gak tapi kalau tak buat apa kerja pun dan asyik dengan kegiatan kesatuan, tak adil la jugak untuk majikan!

vlanderen said...

hata is brave enough to point out at the consequences mainstream newspapers will face for playing too much politics.

we should respect him for that. foremost, he threw a reminder for mainstream newspapers to put employees interest at the utmost.

tukang cetak said...

kalau asyik isi halaman dengan terlalu banyak berita politik, pembaca akan muak dan berhenti membeli. bila circulation dan jatuh, pengiklan pun pikir dua tiga kali nak beli space. lambat laun, akhbar akan rugi dan seluruh operasi akan terjejas. lepas tu mula la kawal gaji pekerja dan kemudahan lain. ada yang akan ditawarkan vss untuk bersara awal demi menjimatkan kos. beginilah yang bakal menimpa mereka jika tidak berhati-hati. mainlah poltiik banyak2!

Anonymous said...

sack him. after all, he didnt contribute to much good news!

sucitra said...

house arrest?

brilliant idea. he doesnt have to go to office, just collect his monthly salary.

i wish my employer will tell me that!

ajau, bintulu said...

some trade unions are good. as for nuj, they really fight for its members. for someone like hata to voice out his concern over shrinking circulation of mainstream newspapers for too much politics, should be commended and appreciated.

newspaper industry employs about 20,000 people in the country and the demise of one would be disastrous to many.

gondola said...

kalau terlalu banyak bahan politik dalam akhbar, rakyat akan muak, lebih2 lagi yang diputarbelitkan oleh pengarang demi menjaga bontotnya.

maklumat tulen politik lebiih banyak terkandung dalam internet, terutamanya di laman2 blog.

so, akhbar patut car alternatif lain untuk memikat pembaca.

betul tak jai?

jambalaya said...

that's what freedom of in malaysia is all about.

utusan cannot take positive criticism, just like some top leaders in the govt.

Anonymous said...

i believe all malaysian journalists stood by hata.

utusan is just another arrogant!

lot 77 said...

hata,

jangan risau kalau kena buang. lim kit siang boleh ambek kau keje dengan roket!

unipolar said...

like perkasa, utusan wants to play a role as champion for the malays.

the editors think without utusan, there wont be any more malays in the world!

Anonymous said...

Aku kenal sangat dengan mamat ini. Tak guna satu sen pun sebagai seorang wartawan. Sedbagai seorang unionist dia amat berguna dan dipergunakan.Si Hata atas kurang sikit, suka meroyan dan syiok sendiri.Utusan patut tukar dia sebagai wartawan kepada penyelia kilang kerana dia ni "garang" dan dapat motivate pekerja kilang utusan yang malas dan suka curi tulang serta pandai claim overtime.
Sjarah Utusan memang tidak suka kepada kestauan sejak zaman Zam lagi. ramai anggota kestauan kena tindas tedrmasuk dik tukar ke biro termasuka Razak Ghouse, Shaharuddin, Rashid, Amran Ahmad (kena pecat). Hanya Normala ok kerana pandai jaga boss.

Ex-Jounalist

samagagah said...

kepada utusan dan berita harian, cukup2lah dengan keje mengampu ni. ampu banyak ke, ampu sikit ke, kerajaan dok lagu tu jugak. rakyat makin meluat baca paper hangpa!

jibam said...

utusan boleh main isu kaum, takpa, kerajaan tak marah.

sebab utusan dah takda modal nak lakukan akhbarnya, sebab tu kena cari isu hangat yang dah basi!

pokok sen said...

pemilik utusan ialah orang melayu. sudah menjadi sifat orang melayu kaya tidak suka ditegur kekurangan serta kesilapannya

airman_1 said...

sapa nak taruh iklan dlm paper melayu yg baca paper pun berapa kerat kalau baca paper inggeris semua orang baca baru dapat untung kan...kan..

pro-PKR said...

i hope pakatan wins next general election. let us see where would this people go into hiding!

umbut pisang said...

bos2 kat atas utusan, berita harian dan ahkhar lain semuanya barua kerajaan. takut nak siarkan berita benar. yang salah pun jadi benar pada mereka. nak cover kerajaan konon. rakyat dah tak bodoh macam korang dah. ingat sikit!