Friday, February 10, 2012

Balancing blogs and mainstream media...

"Readers must not believe that everything is gospel truth in the blogs. It may make an interesting reading on some sensational stories that you find in the social sphere but let us not allow our emotions cloud our judgement... To separate truth from spins and half truths, Malaysians should read, decipher and analyse from every source - from the print media to radio, television, and bloggers - to make an educated and informed conclusion." - MCA President Chua Soi Lek.

I must agree with him. Some blogs are deceiving, some produce half truth stories and many become popular for the lies and slanders.

However, some are really good and quality news material. Whether its politics, economy, sosial, world affairs, sports and others, some blogs provide a better insight on certain issues. The writers, normally journalists and professionals like lawyers, doctors and politicians, do not simply sell their soul to the devil over what they write.

But blogging is not journalism although some of the postings are being subscribed by the mainstream media, especially newspapers. I have noticed some good blog postings gained front-page headlines for its precision.

Blogs are personal domain. The owners are free to pen their thoughts and perception as to how and when they wish. And they are the ones responsible for what they write. If it contains elements of defamation and lies, the subject of the posting can sue them for libel. As to date, no laws protect such bloggers.

Just like newspapers, blogs too have niche readership. Those who are fond of sociopolitical issue will read sociopolitical blogs. Those who look for leisure will go for leisure blogs and for those who like reading 'colorful and abusive' blogs, there are many around. And certainly the ones with vulgarity, slanderous and immodest words will gain popularity fast. The hits are theirs.

Yes, some blogs are very invigorating in the sense that readers would make full assessment of the facts and figures. Readers can learn from it; even the mainstream media sometimes fail to reach out to special issues and hence have to depend on blogs feed.

The only thing that separates blogs and the print and electronic media is timing. While blogs provide readers with the latest information at high speed, television and radio will only carry it during news airtime and special segments. Worse is newspapers - it appears the next day or many hours later when people are already talking about it.

And what Chua said is true. Readers must be able to distinguish the truth and 'news sense' by not only referring to blogs. They must also turn to newspapers and the electronic media as this will avoid them from making their own judgement over specific issues.

So, there must be some collaborations between selective bloggers and the mainstream media to enable both sides gain benefit from the 'open news dissemination'. I wonder what has the Press Council set up last year involving the Information, Communication and Culture Ministry, the Home Ministry and representative of the media - formulated thus far!

In some countries like the US, South Korea, Japan and even Cambodia, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and South Africa, the government pools senior journalists and selected bloggers into a special task force to help the Cabinet in news monitoring and info gathering.

As blogs get more readers' attention, there is a potential for both sides - blog writers and mainstream media - to work together in many aspects of news 'reporting'. And I personally don't think most reporters attached with the leading newspapers today can produce good 'scoops' as some bloggers do...

13 comments:

dennis adam said...

morning sir,

bloggers are also news hunters. since blogs are introduced, they are the ones who come up with so many interesting stories that mainstream media failed to dig.

as per your recommendation, it is a must for every government to engage a group of good, wise and reliable bloggers to its strategic team. singapore is doing it.

but it is also wrong to conclude that blogs will see the demise of newspapers as the latter have its own readers too. unless newspapers fail to come up with new approach and not being to political, i believe they will survive.

thank you

7 inches said...

categories of bloggers:

- serious
- funny
- lies
- half lies
- profanity
- stupid

which one are u?

penangan said...

salam tn,

penulis laman blog makin memainkan peranan dalam menyemarakkan penyebaran berita serta maklumat di dunia hari ini.

bagaimanapun, pembaca perlulah adil dalam menimbang kesahihan sesuatu posting. akhbar dan tv masih relevan untuk dibuat perbandingan.

memang tidak dinafikan juga ada penulis blog lebih pro daripada wartawan akhbar dan tv, dan orang seperti inilah yang kita perlukan.

pembaca banyak blog said...

jai,

aku tak faham kenapa ada bloger berebut-rebut dapatkan hit dan mendakwa blognya sebagai nombor satu atau high ranking.

sepatutnya blog diasingkan mengikut jenis dan sifatnya kerana blog politik yang serius tidak boleh dipadankan dengan blog yang kuat mencarut dan memaki hamun orang.

so, elok diwujudkan ranking bagi setiap kategori.

Anonymous said...

take a look at some of those blogs.

why should we appreciate those with profanity?

such blogs dont deserve to be read!

blogs should give good and positive input to readers, esp the younger generation.

soroche said...

the standard of malaysian blogs are still way behind.

u people are only at par with bloggers in papua new guinea!

kah kah kah!!!!!

Anonymous said...

only a few bloggers are useful and helpful.

the rest are just CIBAI!

sebastian said...

soi lek cakap benar.

blog makin banyak. terserahlah kepada pembaca untuk menimbang kesahihannya.

banyak juga blog mencarut dan memaki hamun ni tapi jumlah hitnya memang tinggi sebab ia mencerminkan mentaliti pemilik blog dan kumpulan pembacanya.

blog yang serius dan berbentuk analisis kurang dibaca kerana 'tak fun' tapi blog sebeginilah yang menjana minda pembaca untuk berfikir.

Anonymous said...

i only read blogs written by journalists.

the others are craps!

OMEGA said...

wahh!!!!

saran kerajaan employ bloger pulak.

cukuplah kau dah kaya dengan duit blog tu, bujai!

bagi orang lain pulak.

aku dengar kau dapat 40k sebulan, betul ke?

Anonymous said...

kita perlu tahu membezakan di antara BLOG dan GOBLOG!

blog mengandungi tulisan bernas, tidak tipu dan tidak lucah.

goblog pulak banyak unsur tak sehat.

NMN said...

I don't 100% believe of what being written by bloggers, be they journalists or some 'other craps'.

Though what they write could be the truth, half truth or totally lies, I am entitled to my own opinion too. Of course, after doing some research and homework on the subject matter.

I don't intend to write a blog at the moment; there are just too many of them. Don't think anybody would want to read my blog either.

Anonymous said...

I think bloggers being anonymous can play the role of whistle blowers.

This role is crucial as a watch dog for transparency and accountability.

Over a certain period, readers can assess the "worthy read" bloggers against those who have "axes to grind" or "political spinmasters".

Glad to say, yours is a worthy read. Kudos.