For Freedom of Information

Have you already signed the Petition for the Freedom of Information Act?

(We will be launching a fresh signature campaign on 1st June.
Watch out for the announcement)

Read about the Petition

Sign the Petition

According to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) Report for Q3 2007, Malaysia now has 1,229,000 broadband subscriptions and 3,910,000 dial-up subscriptions representing 4.5% and 14.6% penetration rates respectively. This translates into approximately 5,139,000 internet subscribers!

As of this writing, there is a sad total of 456 persons who have signed the petition?

Does this mean that Malaysians don’t care? I think not. Within a matter of hours, more than RM30,000 was donated by generous Malaysians who cared that dear Raja Petra Kamarudin had been jailed for alleged sedition.

So why have so few signed the petition? I suspect it’s because they don’t know about it. Test it yourself. Turn around and ask the person next to you… “Have you signed the Petition for Freedom of Information?”. A likely response could well be, “Huh? What?”.

Well, what can you do about it? Make it a personal mission to pass the word around. Post in your blog. Send out e-mail. Send out SMS. Call them on their office or home phones. Tell people personally.

If each person can reach 10 persons, get them to sign the petition, and reach out similarly to another 10 persons, the outreach will quickly multiply. Within a week, we should be able to hit the first target of 10,000 signatures.

So why are you still here? Get going.🙂

3 Responses to For Freedom of Information

  1. janus says:

    The Star has just lost its last shred of credibility.

    Read this: http://www.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2008/5/9/nation/21203494&sec=nation

    And if anyone subscribes to Malaysiakini, read this:
    http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/82572
    For non-subscribers, the Malay version is free:
    http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/82580

    Notice the difference? The article in the Star shows only one picture – angry residents dismantling the barrier. What about the water canon and tear gas fired?

    Although I may not necessarily condone their actions (the residents’), why are the FRUs and the police involved in this? And to use force? That is unacceptable. The company involved has the right to sue the residents, but why did the police gang up with the company to forcefully disperse the crowd?

    Shouldn’t the Star question this too? Read the article in the Star, then read the article in Malaysiakini, and you’ll see the difference. The Star may have tried to portray a different image recently through its various editorials, but I don’t think it has changed one bit or is serious about embracing press freedom.

    Sigh… I won’t be buying newspapers for a long long time.

    Janus,

    What should rile people is the fact that Grand Saga is in fact building the barricade on State land.

    In yesterday’s Malaysiakini report, DAP state executive councillor Ronnie Liu said “The state government via the surveillance services of the Department of Survey and Mapping Malaysia (Jupem) have complete jurisdiction over the road and Grand Saga has no authority to place the barricades there”. If Liu is right, then the police should be stopping Grand Saga instead of taking action against the residents.

    People must be bemused by what is happening. The state government is clearly not pleased with the antics of Grand Saga and yet it seems so powerless to stop what Grand Saga and the police is doing.

    Many news reporters and editors are only experts at ‘cut and paste’ on press releases and have over the years lost the art of asking pointed questions or pointing out the obviously stupid stuff. The people must get them to change their ways and this is why Benar wants to engage them.

  2. mycuntree says:

    Hei folks, WHERE DO I SIGN?.

    Where it says “Sign the Petition” right there at the top of this page… click on the link and you will get to the Petition.

  3. su says:

    It’s been 5/6 days since this post, and there has only been an increase of 300+ signatures on the petition. I’ve sent out emails, and I’ve also sent the link to some other bloggers, requesting that they put the link on their blog too. But looks like it’s not really going anywhere at the moment.

    Any ideas on how we can spread this? The people out there need to know of the existence of this petition.

    One reason why they’re not signing is probably because they think it’s going to be useless anyway. Any ideas on how we can convince them to sign?

    The excellent write-up on Susan Loone’s popular blog resulted, within 2 days, in more than 50 referrals to the Benar blog, most of which led to signatures. A single posting in Malaysia Today led to almost 400 hits but only some 200 signatures. Clearly the demographics of the respective visitors to those blogs is different.

    I am guessing that many people may even have missed the Benar article on Malaysia Today because new postings are added quite rapidly. If, instead of a transient article in the blog, the link to the signature article was to be positioned in a prominent location on the blog for a week, we can expect significantly more responses.

    Nevertheless, if this is the level of response available from online sites, further efforts may bring us to perhaps 2000 signatures at best. This is why, if we seek targets like 10,000 or more, we have to bring the petition out to the people.

    Volunteers armed with laptops in WiFi enabled malls can catch passers-by at random and easily boost the numbers. PCs can be made available at all relevant functions and events so that participants can sign the petition. We can even seek permission to man a Petition PC at Parliament House for visitors to sign.

    We need this kind of creative suggestions (and volunteers) to be forthcoming so that the petition can attract a credible number of signatures.

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