More than a third of UK’s surveyed internet users try digital detoxing, some for a month. Table fronm FT.
More than a third of UK’s surveyed internet users try digital detoxing, some for a month. Table fronm FT.
Indon VP asking for neighbours’ help in fighting the fires. But he seems to have forgotten that Indon officials have said they don’t need help.
Worse, while complaining that S’pore was trying to punish Indon cos for the fires, it has stopped investigating them
Indonesia’s efforts in tackling forest fires came into question when 15 out of 18 companies suspected of being responsible for the forest fires last year got off the hook with the law.
On Thursday, detik.com reported that the district police in Riau will be stopping investigations on the 15 companies due to the lack of evidence.
“It does not fulfil the elements of intent nor negligence, so we decide to stop investigating the cases,” said Senior Commissioner Rivai Sinambela, Director for Special Criminal Investigation, Riau police district.
Commissioner Rival said that the fires happened on land which have conflicting ownership with the community, and not on areas belonging to the companies.
In 2015, police began investigations on 18 companies suspected of causing forest fires, but only three went to the courts. The three companies PT Langgam Inti Hibrindo, PT Palm Lestari Makmur and PT Wahana Subur Sawit were eventually acquitted.
Here I suggested that the PAP administration should ban the use of smartphone cameras because they are a clear and present danger to the PAP’s paternal instinct to ensure that we only get the “right” info (So that, among other things, we are not panicked.)
Here’s a good reason why the PAP administration should go further and ban smartphones.
Indian newspaper The Telegraph ran a fascinating exclusive on its front page yesterday.
It obtained a copy of an investigation into Kashmiri militancy written by a top police officer in the state.
The report, which has been presented to officials at the home Ministry, argues that growing access to social media is the key to understanding the current upsurge in militancy in the region.
[I]n the last few years the security forces in Kashmir have noticed that the public is now far more likely to intervene in their operations.
He reports that when they go to make an arrest or get involved in even a minor confrontation with militants, very quickly members of the public come out to protest against their action and, on occasion, even attack them.
One factor has to be that smartphone messages go out alerting people to what is going on.
As far as security personnel are concerned this represents a very serious increase in the risks they face.
Just like during the Arab Spring and indeed in the unfolding race crisis in America, it seems the contours of the conflict in Kashmir are increasingly being shaped and defined by technology.
Trumpets please for SgDaily and Joel Koh, the new kids on the block in Blogosphere S’pore
LTA in the presence of, MoT, Khaw, answered the question that only SgDaily’s Joel Koh asked in public: What happens to service reliability and timings?*
There was no correlation to train delays of more than five minutes to the hairline cracks, LTA said at the briefing. It indicated that most of the delays since 2014 were linked to signalling faults, door or brake issues, with none linked to hairline cracks.
The authority added that even when trains were being repaired, there were always enough trains to meet demand.
For example, for 2016, there are 140 trains available for the North-South and East-West lines, and 124 trains are needed to meet demand. This will continue till 2019 – when replacement work is completed – where there will always be more trains available than needed, according to estimates.
Declaration of interest; My Facebook avatar can post stuff on SgDaily’s FB wall.
*Yes no other blogger or website or activist or Oppo party asked publicly how the cracks affected train service. And neither did the running dogs** from SPH or MediaCorp asked.
So all but two guard dogs were asleep, just like their running dog cousins. Groupthink at its very best.
**Yes my dogs are getting extra treats for this insult to the K9 community.
In my own opinion, they should have disclosed it. Everyone has their reasons, but in the end there’s always consequences. Daniel Yap of TMG in a FB post when introducing this piece he wrote http://themiddleground.sg/2016/07/07/faulty-trains-tell-not-tell/
Piece is worth a read, explaining why it would have been better for the authorities to have disclosed the cracks and the remedial action: they would then have controlled the news agenda.
But this analysis and other criticisms of the silence miss the point.
PAPpies brains work differentlyL when the public doesn’t know a fact, that fact never exists.
In 2011, I analysed a senior PAPpy’s and his team’s unhappiness with a TOC report.
I wrote, they must believe in an 18th century philosophical theory that is now treated as a forerunner of the concept of “subjective idealism”. One Bishop Berkeley argued that there are no material objects, only minds and ideas in those minds. He summarised his theory with the motto “esse est percipi” (“To be is to be perceived”). In modern PR-speak, this translates into,“Perception is reality”, one of the major tenets of the PR and public communication industry.
This theory of “Perception is reality” is best summarised in the following example he gave. If a tree in a forest falls, but no-one sees or hears it fall, has it fallen? Berkeley argues that it has not fallen. It is still standing.
An example in the S’pore context would be that S’poreans were not aware of how close the voting would be on polling day in 1988 in Eunos GRC and in Cheng San GRC in 1991. The mainstream media did not report the sentiment on the ground in these two GRCs, so S’poreans were not aware that many S’poreans were unhappy with the PAP. The unhappiness did not exist because it was not reported.
Coming back to Traingate. SMRT, the LTA and MoT kept quiet because they like Bishop Berkeley believe that “Perception is reality”. So long as the public did not know that there were cracks in the 26 China-made trains, and that the trains had been returned for repairs, there were no train cracks. There were no cracked trains because If a tree in a forest falls, but no-one sees or hears it fall, has it fallen? Berkeley argues that it has not fallen. It is still standing.
What they still don’t realise that in this age of social media and the internet where many people walk around with smartphone cameras, If a tree in a forest falls, someone will see it or hear it fall. And tell others about the falling tree, after taking a selfie beside the fallen tree.
This being the case, disclosure of problems or cock-ups, not cover-ups or silence should be the best (and default) policy for the authorities and corporations They should assume that news of the cock-up or problem will become public knowledge and that by disclosing, the news agenda can, hopefully, be controlled..
But in one-party states, silence or cover-up are the default options, not disclosure. And this is the weakness of one-party states where people carry smartphone cameras. The one-party state will, in time, be undermined.
Ban smartphone cameras PAP? After all internet access for public servants will soon be restricted in this wired, connected nation.
But demand for digital services leaves banks and other financial institutions more open to more risk. The majority of top bankers said they were open to more risks than they could manage as a result of digital developments, according to a global survey of bankers by the consultancy Accenture.
Yet the PAP administration has indicated by its plan to restrict direct access to the internet for civil servants that it is trying to cut cybersecurity risks by cutting internet connections.
Delinking cicil servants from the internet
‘The Govt’s move to delink computers used by civil servants from direct access to the Internet is “absolutely necessary” to keep govt data and public services secure,’ PM. He cited the possibility of personal data like NRIC numbers, addresses and income tax returns being hacked and put up for sale in the internet.
When this policy takes effect in May next year, civil servants can only access the Internet through dedicated computers or through their own computers. It seems that there have been very determined attacks on the Govt’s IT systems and the threats are getting more severe and sophisticated. Just relying on the system’s defensive measures is looking like a losing proposition? It is best to cut the connections to the minimum?
So how does the call for more fintech dovetails with the plan to deny most civil servants direct access to the internet?
Fintech is all about increasing connections, the civil service delinking initiative is all about cutting connections.
Does the PAP administration think that the banks and other financial institutions can safeguard data better than it can? Or that the data financial institutions hold is not so impotant?
Or maybe is the delinking policy, is as suggested by Chris K, aimed at avoiding a PR disaster:” PAP must always look good even when PAP goofs”? A variant of “Napoleon is always right”*?
Or is Tharman just joking about the importance of fintech to S’pore?
*Another one of Boxer’s mottoes is “I will work harder”. Sounds so S’porean and something that the PAP encourages. But then why is productivity is so worryingly low. Too many of the PAP’s favoured caste, FTs, isit?
With the use of the telegraph
Timeline: The Evolution of Fintech Starting in 1865, the structures, networks and ideas that are the foundation for financial technology today began to take shape.
From an FT article
One of the worries in the market is that insurers might have exposure to cyber risk via existing, non-cyber policies. “There are people with old products such as liability insurance or property damage insurance where the wording has not changed for decades,” said Simon Kilgour of law firm CMS.
“There are no specific exclusions in those policies so there is a question of whether a cyber loss would be covered. If you can’t prove that you have excluded cyber, then you have to assume you could be exposed.”
SWIFT REPORTS A NEW ATTACK Thieves have found their way into the Swift global bank network as investigators are still trying to solve the $81 million heist from the central bank of Bangladesh, Michael Corkery reports in DealBook.
The second attack involved a commercial bank, which Swift declined to identify. In a letter it planned to send to users on Friday, which The New York Times reviewed, Swift warned that the two attacks bore similarities and were likely part of a “wider and highly adaptive campaign targeting banks.”
Banking experts said the attacks might be impossible to solve or trace. Swift said the thieves got their hands on legitimate network credentials, initiated the fraudulent transfers and installed malware on bank computers to disguise their movements.
“The attackers clearly exhibit a deep and sophisticated knowledge of specific operation controls within the targeted banks – knowledge that may have been gained from malicious insiders or cyberattacks, or a combination of both,”Swift said. It also warned that the gang of thieves may have been able to recruit bank employees to hand over credentials.
Security experts who have studied the attacks said the thieves were probably lurking inside the bank systems for months before they were detected and are likely to strike again.
Swift’s core messaging system was not breached, but the criminals attacked the banks’ connections to its network. Banks are responsible for maintaining the security of their own connections to Swift and digital criminals have found ways to exploit loopholes in bank security to obtain login credentials and dispatch fraudulent Swift messages.
This second attack suggests a highly sophisticated threat that did not depend on weak digital defenses.
David Bowie was also groundbreaking in his use of technology, not least his internet service, BowieNet, which launched in September 1998.
In a time before Instagram, YouTube, Twitter or even MySpace, most artists provided little if any online material to their followers.
But Bowie’s platform not only offered a wide variety of exclusive content, but also several ways to interact with the singer himself.
“In my view, BowieNet had to be the most groundbreaking reachout to fans that I have ever seen any artist ever do,” Craig Carrington, one of its users, says.
“He just had the attitude that if he was going to do it, he was going to do it right.”
BowieNet also operated as a full internet service provider (ISP) in the US and UK, competing with AOL, Claranet and others.
And NYT’s dealbook trports
HOW DAVID BOWIE INSPIRED CHANGES ON WALL STREETDavid Bowie was known for his ability to reinvent himself, but he also inspired a pocket of Wall Street that tries to create money from weird things like billboard rental income and film libraries, Liz Moyer writes in DealBook.
In 1997, Mr. Bowie bundled up nearly 300 of his existing recordings and copyrights into a $55 million security that paid the buyer, Prudential Insurance Company of America, an annual rate of 7.9 percent over 10 years. It was backed by income from royalties, record sales and the licensing of songs.
The Bowie bonds were among the first in a wave of esoteric asset-backed securities deals based on intellectual property. The buyers in these deals tend to be specialized hedge funds or big institutions. Individual investors never got their hands on a Bowie bond because Prudential never sold any of its stake.
It was a good deal for Mr. Bowie at the time. He received upfront cash without having to give up ownership of his songs.
Originally rated A3 by Moody’s Investors Service, the bonds were later downgraded to just above junk status as Internet file-sharing cut into income from album sales.
But others followed in his steps with similar deals. James Brown and Rod Stewart made deals and DreamWorks SKG entered a $1 billion deal involving its film catalog.
Deals backed by unusual assets now make up about a tenth of the asset-backed security market, appealing to investors who want higher yields and are willing to take on more risk.
Dubai has a new plan to encourage residents to keep fit and healthy by rewarding them with cinema tickets and free gym membership, it’s reported.
Sounds good but then
Residents will have an online account where their reward points will accumulate, with fitness apps and other technology being used to measure participation and rewards. “If someone uses the gym three times a week, the data from the gym that is registered in this programme will let us know how healthy the user has been and how many points he should receive,” says Dr al-Yousuf.
I expect Home Team, ISD and MDA will be sending people to study how this system can be brought into use here without the rewards (“S’pore not as rich leh” PM will say), only the data gathering.
From NYT Dealbook
DILLER’S MINIFACTORY OF SPINOFFS PAYS OFF Somewhat by accident, Barry Diller, chairman of IAC/InterActiveCorp, has built a unique business model that has reaped enormous value for IAC’s shareholders – exceeding even that of Disney and Microsoft, Andrew Ross Sorkin writes in the DealBook column. He describes Mr. Diller’s “minifactory of spinoffs” business as: “Buy digital businesses, fold them into a conglomerate and then spin out the most successful ones,” like the Match Group, which went public last week and now has a market value of $3.7 billion. “I’m really an anti-conglomerateur,” Mr. Diller told Mr. Sorkin.
“If you invested $1,000 in IAC in August 1995 when Mr. Diller began the business – at the cusp of the dot-com boom (and subsequent bust) – you’d have about $16,000 today, assuming you reinvested dividends and held on to shares of the various companies spun off from IAC,” Mr. Sorkin writes. “By comparison, if you invested $1,000 in a fund that tracked the Nasdaq index, you’d have about $4,800 today.”
The terrorists are not common criminals, it’s not about crime punishment and deterrence. They are a mortal enemy intent on killing and destroying. So you kill them before they kill you. And their children too in case they grow up to take revenge. It’s as simple as that. Please don’t complicate matters.
Within the sentence “And their children too in case they grow up to take revenge” are the key two words: *in case*
This clearly means that the proposed killings of the children of terrorists are precautionary in nature, and that he is *clearly aware* that there will be a proportion of those killed, who will not “grow up to take revenge”. (I.e. innocent personnel).
By his own admission, he also states that he was not going for general deterrence value – meaning that he did not also intend to intimidate future terrorists into submission – a stance which would leave room for mercy, for those children of terrorists who are so intimidated by the killing of kin now, that in future they are too cowed to take up the sword.
No, he was going for *precautionary killing*, in *full knowledge* that those killed will include a significant portion of innocent personnel.
The gulf between general deterrence and this is stark – equivalent to the comparison of passing of a deterrent death sentence on a single murderer’s kid to *dissuade* future children of other murderers from following their fathers’ footsteps, against that of setting a policy of killing all these other children too as a utilitarian precaution *in full knowledge* that *not all will turn*, with no room or thought given for the restraining effect of general deterrence.
This callousness and failure to err on the side of innocence is further compounded by the fact that these personnel are children, which have been clearly recognized both in the court and science as deserving of a more rehabilitative, rather than retributive or deterrence-focused sentencing.
The overreach of killing, in Calvin Cheng’s full recognition that there will be risk of killing of innocent underaged personnel, goes directly against the principle that “”It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer” (the well-known Blackstone Formulation).
Needless to say, this view of his also puts up a dangerously extreme view that can be easily be mistaken for an officially espoused viewpoint, given the great efforts in which Calvin Cheng has poured into advertising that he had once been appointed as a NMP, which although without a vote, does come with a voice of influence in Parliament and the policies of Singapore.
If left without censure now, it is too easy for the common man to make the logical leap that perhaps Cheng’s view is not opposed by the powers here, and from that, it is only too easy for the next radical here to justify his extreme ways with the battlecry of “They will kill our kids as a precaution, nevermind whether they turn out ultimately innocent or not”
What remains now is the question, of how a member of the Media Literacy Council (MLC), with the higher burden of responsibility placed on his online commentary, could behave like this (and have a noted history of other uncivil comments), and yet continue undisciplined in the same role.
Thus ends Renson’s piece.
“For IoT [internet of things], we see Hong Kong as much more advantageous than other places like Singapore because of its proximity to Shenzhen and the ease with which you can rapidly develop prototypes,” the FT quotes VXC David Chen . He helped investee co Hanson Robotics, move from Texas to Hong Kong’s Science Park
If Yaacob and his officials in the ministry of propaganda and media supervision want to get mega bonuses from Ah Loong, they should visit Tanzania, go on a safari in the Serengeti National Park , come home, and then introduce a cybercrime law based on Tanzania’s.
Tanzania is no North Korea. Our ang moh tua kees should love it.Tanzania is ranked 75 in the latest Freedom of the Press Index while S’pore is a lowly 153. But Tanzania is the latest African country to introduce a cybercrime law, after Kenya, South Africa, Nigeria and Zambia.
According to a BBC report someone said on his Facebook page:
“The Tanzania cybercrime law seems to be working well enough, to slow down chat buddies and online bloggers. It’s amazing, since morning to afternoon I’ve received less than 300 chat messages, compared to other days before the law came into effect, when in less than an hour, I’d have received more than 1000 messages.”
As a BBC African commentator put it
Tanzania’s social media chat groups have gone a little quiet since the government introduced a new law to tackle cyber crime.
I’m not aware that there are people who navigate their way around social media, armed with AK47 assault rifles.
So it can only mean Big Brother is watching and listening.
Now if you share images of people who forgot to wear clothes, or if you share lies on social media, or commit other acts deemed to be criminal, you could spend 10 years in jail.
And the PAP administration can cut and paste the need for the new law: The government says the new law will help address new forms of crimes not covered in other laws, such as spreading lies, sedition and pornographic material online*.
But our malay (his other portfolio) minister, is not as ambitious, hardworking or intelligent as the pet minister, or the ex-finance minister, newly promoted to co-ordinating minister of commerce. So sometimes it is good that an RI boy is not that ambitious, hardworking and intelligent**.
+Commentator points out But critics argue the law will infringe on the freedom of the press and expression. Some complain that the new law, which came into effect less than two months before the 25 October general election, is aimed at silencing voices critical of the government and ruling party.
**Ftr, his eldest brudder is a presidential scholar who is is alleged got tired of the public service. He was last seen in HK.
Apparently TRE cybernuts and Jason Chua and his pro PAP cybernuts have better sex lives than normal S’poreans.
The UK’s Daily Star (think Stomp! and New Paper), reports a study by a sex therapist who says he has found that less intelligent people have a better love life as they are less likely to worry about “performance” or “how satisfied their lover is”.
“The findings that dumb people have better sex will be welcome news to hordes of everyday Brits, as well as numerous celebrities,” the paper adds.
What he said also applies to the narratives that collectively make up the history of S’pore. Victors write the “right” narrative, expecting, hoping it will be accepted, forced down or spun as history.
But the internet (and the new media) makes this more difficult.
History is important, as a BBC commentator says, because there are so many perspectives: history is shaped by continued research. And, of course, it’s also shaped by political will. Last year’s anniversary of World War One’s outbreak and continuing responses to the conflict give us a chance, not only to remember that handful of cataclysmic, world-changing years, but also to witness an ideological tussle between those who feel war is best remembered as the shedding of blood and those who feel it’s best represented as an outbreak of flowers. If history were like arithmetic – two plus two always being four – we’d have a chance to keep it simple and definitive, but it’s so large, it has so many perspectives. It offers so many opportunities to play with our sense of self and our emotions. Manipulated history can offer us clumsy impostures like Piltdown man, or the vile fantasies involved in Holocaust denial. History as a vital, exacting discipline, can show us how whole populations of normal people can be persuaded to behave horrifically, if they’re overwhelmed by histories of past glory, of injustice and suffering at others’ hands. Attack is so much easier to sell, if it’s packaged as pre-emptive defence. Part of growing up involves realising that nation’s futures, good and bad, can leap from their perceptions of the past.
Grumbling about propagandists is easy, but if I look at my own past – especially when I let that be all about me – I’m consistently guilty of propaganda campaigns. If I’m feeling cheerful, the last time I met my gentleman of choice he was pleased to see me, possibly even impressed. Which makes me more cheerful, which makes other memories of him more rosy. If I’m glum, our last encounter dreadful and all is lost. He isn’t just there, being himself but in the past tense – he’s a tall expression of my convoluted ego.
Or as one Harry said, in a less long wided manner,The final verdict will not be in the obituaries. The final verdict will be when the PhD students dig out the archives, read my old papers, assess what my enemies have said, sift the evidence and seek the truth.
Despite all this, Harry wanted to “shape” history’s judgement of him and S’pore*. And so does the PAP. “The Straits Times story is one important strand of the Singapore story.” said PM of the PAP’s unofficial house paper recently https://atans1.wordpress.com/2015/07/22/pm-visiting-from-bizarro-spore/.
But today of all days, we must remember the alternative narratives that do not fall into the “right” category.
In Harry’s version of history, detained Barisan Sosialis leaders Dr Poh Soo Kai and Fong Swee Suan were communists who had to be detained without trial.
But former Barisan leader Dr Poh Soo Kai, among those arrested, insists this was not true.
“There may have been some communists in our party, but we were not following their orders. We did not want terrorism, we were committed to constitutional reform,” the 83-year-old says.
Another Barisan leader, Fong Swee Suan, was also imprisoned in 1963 and then lived in exile until the 1990s. He maintains he was never a communist, and also denies the charge that he instigated deadly riots among striking bus workers.
“I want people to be aware that my father has made a positive contribution to Singapore,” says his son Otto Fong, speaking on his elderly father’s behalf.
“He helped workers organise their unions. He only wanted to speak up for their needs, and make the relationship between employees and employers better.”
Then there are the narratives of people like Mrs Seow Peck Leng – Mountbatten’s first MP. A woman ahead of her time, she championed gender equality and was among those who made the Women’s Charter a reality: http://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2015/08/mrs-seow-peck-leng-spirit-of-mountbatten/
And never forget Counterfactual history, also sometimes referred to as virtual history, is a form of historiography that attempts to answer “what if” questions known as counterfactuals.
Modern Singapore: prosperous and peaceful, and led by charismatic working-class hero Lim Chin Siong. His political rival, Lee Kuan Yew, is living in exile and ignominy.
This scenario – ludicrous to Singaporeans celebrating 50 years of independence led by Lee – was dreamt up by local artist Sonny Liew in a new book which imagines an alternative history.
This graphic novel reminds us that the “right” narrative is written by the victors, and is often accepted, taught or spun as history.
*I’m reminded of “History will be kind to me for I intend to write it”.
Related article: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/3626376/History-as-written-by-the-victor.html
The above explains why LKY had been spinning his version far and wide.
It was reported on TRE (and on MSM sites) that M’sia’sTourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz said that he was elected by his constituents to serve them, which sets him apart from the Crown Prince of Johor who had criticised him for not behaving like the people’s “servant”.
I couldn’t help but laugh at the irony of this report appearing on TRE.
While I respect TeamTRE’s efforts to provide alternative angles to the BS of the PAP administration and the constructive, nation-building media in an attempt to show S’poreans that there are credible alternative narratives, analysis , sadly there is a group using TRE tp alienate the swing voters from the Oppo.
These are a group of posters there who think that they represent all the S’poreans that voted for the oppo and whose heroes are Roy Ngerng and his fellow hooligan New Citizen Han Hui Hui, Goh Meng Seng (he regained his popularity with the cybernuts by dancing on the graves of the children who died in Sabah), Amos Yee (now inside Woodbridge for observation) and s/o JBJ.
With the exception of the MPs and ministers from Tanjong Pagar GRC, all the rest of the PAP ministers and MPs won their seats by comfortable majorities bar those in two SMCs where they got in by a nose.
And the failure to contest Tanjong Pagar is the fault of one man who screwed up big time by waiting until almost the close of nomination to file incorrect documents. If he had bothered to come in half-an-hour earlier, the PAP would have had a fight on their hands.
So while ,most of the PAP MPs were elected, who chose the freeloading cybernuts (TRE is always short of funds despite the team paying to serve) infesting TRE like the rats and bugs infested Bukit Batok.
Employers and jobless S’porean PMEs KPKB about the difficulty to fill available vacancies because the unemployed have difficulties knowing waz available, while employers don’t know what experience is outb there.. Even NTUC says, echoing the public, that merely requiring employers to post an advert on the MOM Jobs Bank for 2 weeks does not necessarily do anything to ensure S’poreans are employed before foreigners partly because of the way the system works in matching jobs to those looking for jobs.
Matching those looking for jobs with the vacancies is a world-wide problem, not unique to S’pore.
Here’s a solution that suggests using online dating software (modified of course).
Economists believe that much of this difficulty lies in matching the supply of graduates to the available jobs. In 2010 Peter Diamond, Dale Mortensen and Christopher Pissarides won the economics Nobel prize by demonstrating that unemployment can stay high in times of vacancies. It is not possible to assume that buyers and sellers of labour immediately find each other; in many markets this only happens after a costly and lengthy search process. To understand this problem, economists have started to look in a surprising direction for inspiration: online dating.
With its complex matching processes, costs of looking around, and emotional highs-and-lows, a job search shares many characteristics with the world of virtual love (or virtual world of love). In both, there are search costs. It takes time and effort to create an online dating profile, just as it takes time and effort to create a curriculum vitae. And then there is the problem of so-called “mutual choosing options”. Those looking for love and careers cannot simply make their choice and be done with it; they need the person or employer they like to also pick them as well.
But if digital dating suffers from many of the same afflictions as the graduate job market, it may also offer solutions. In 2012 Sean Rad, a college dropout, created Tinder, which shows users photos of potential suitors nearby and matches those who mutually “like” each other’s pictures. Now it has accumulated over 50m users.
As a result, graduate recruiters are falling over themselves to copy the idea. Among the new crop is Switch, which allows candidates to thumb through job listings: flick left if uninterested and right to register for a potential work match. A competitor, Jobr, which also employs the swipe-if-you-like model, uses information from LinkedIn to recommend jobs that candidates might find interesting. Since its launch last year, Jobr has submitted more than 100,000 job applications for its members each month. Large firms are joining in, too. Last year, Zappos, an online retailer based in Nevada, scrapped formal job postings and replaced them with a new site encouraging candidates to engage with each other and the firm in a way not dissimilar to existing online-dating forums.
For the anxious 21-year-old leaving campus for the last time, the worlds of economics and online dating have a few lessons. First, pick a thick market. Just as the most successful lonely hearts go to the apps with the highest-number of potential suitors, so should graduates also head to where the most job opportunities are. Second, just as online daters “signal” their qualities by posting photos, job applicants should also try to communicate their strengths to employers effectively. And finally, settle. Expend the costs of searching for a partner or job only if those costs are outweighed by the expected benefits of a new opportunity or lover. Who said economics wasn’t romantic?
MoM if it really prefers locals to FTs can fund some software development. Or maybe NTUC?
Maybe Richard Wan (MD of of software developer) of TRE could also do something along these lines, sourcing funds from the cybernuts who infest TRE . Juz joking, pigs will fly first before the cybernuts fund anything*.
Meanwhile TeamTRE has to fund itself while also working for free to give Goh Meng Seng (founder member of the Cynernut Movement) and his fellow nutters the opportunity to help the PAP win votes from the swing voters.
*Reminds me of Amos’s ang moh tua kee friends? Where Amos Yee was absolutely right was when he F***ed the ang moh tua kees that were posturing on social media about how concerned they were about him, while he rotted in remand: none offered bail.
The ang moh tua kees and the cybernuts are related? Talk cock, sing song.
I received a lot of personal attacks on TRE for posting this
This is my response I posted earlier this morning on TRE
Andrew Teo*, I’m a S’porean who did NS. Better still I’ve paid more in taxes between the mid 80s and mid 90s, than you could ever paid in yr life time. People like me pay income tax to support irrational people like you.
If you had KPKBed if there was an accident when circumstances were normal, I’d not say anything. Likely to even join in attacking the govt. But there was an earthquake, so you come across as one of those that die die must curse PAP for everything.
Andrew Teo and the other cybernuts, this practice has been going on for years, yet this is first time you guys KPKBed. Could it be that no-one has died or seriously injured before this event.
GE is coming and the middle ground of voters that can be persuaded to vote against the PAP (those who voted for Dr Tan in PE)will not be impressed by yr antics of hate and blame.
I as voter of WP since I could vote (even voted for ex-Woodbridge patient), am not impressed by this outburst of hate and blame.
*This is how he responded to my post
Dear Cynical Investor,
I am a parent and a patriotic Singaporean. I have the right to speak up against anything I feel is wrong.
You think my letter and the forum is disgusting? Then get the FXXX OUT OF MY COUNTRY!!!! We don’t need you and your dirty money.
So what now? I can’t speak up? Try getting the police to arrest me. I DARE YOU!!!!
Even the police officers arresting me have young kids.
Even the investigating officers interrogating me have young kids.
Even the judges prosecuting me have young kids.
Even all the readers here have young kids.
Even YOU have young kids!!!
SO STOP FXXXING TELLING ME WHAT TO DO IN MY OWN COUNTRY!!!
I SERVED MY NS AND I COMPLETED MY RESERVIST!!!
I HAVE TWO SONS WHO WILL EVENTUALLY SERVE NS!!!
I HAVE THE BIRTH RIGHT TO SAY WHAT I FEEL IS RIGHT TO SAY!!!
SHUT UP AND GO HOME!!!
Someone by the name of Andrew Teo was allowed by TRE to post this nauseating piece of rubbish (Why it’s rubbish is explained at the end and somewhere in the middle):
I wrote the following comment on the MOE facebook but I am quite certain that it will not be posted hence I am writing to TRE hoping that your organization will start a new thread on the topic of Sabah Quake.
Here is the message I wrote on MOE facebook:
My heart goes out to the unnamed 12-year-old girl from Tanjong Katong Primary School who died in the Sabah quake during the school’s trip there.
I am saddened and at the same time furious that the school organized such a dangerous trip and MOE is allowing this kind of expedition.
How can little children at this age be allowed to climb such a peak? Will the school management and MOE please explain?
The public deserves the right to know what is going on and assurance that this sort of things will not happen again.
I look forward to reading this new thread on the above topic at TRE soon.
He got a lot of support, and cursing of the PAP administration. Those who disagreed with him were jeered by TRE posters. Even a poster who explained that this climb was not dangerous in normal circumstances was jeered.
Emboldened Andrew Teo went on
June 7, 2015 at 11:35 am (Quote)
Dear fellow Singaporeans,
Thank you one and all for agreeing with me. Except for a few who are foreigners I suspect.
I was almost tearing when I saw the following news. A moment ago there was an update from CNA. Bodies are found pinned under the boulders and rescuers are finding it difficult to remove these bodies. Imagine these small 12 year old bodies crashed by huge rocks. This is not the way to die. They have a long life ahead of them.
I would like someone to help me propose that the MOE Minister, the school principal and those teachers or administrators who coined the idea of the trip be removed from their positions. Furthermore, I am proposing the MOE compensate the dead child’s parents a sum of no less than 1 million dollars because this child would easily earn at least a million dollars in her life time and part of it would go out to support her aging parents.
We are already so short of babies and these precious lives are subjected to such tough mountain-climbing trip? I think the MOE and the school has gone mad. They do all these because of some lame excuse: “Leadership training”?
If MSK can escape the prison and no one was harmed, and Mr Wong Kan Seng has to step down, why can’t we demand that Heng Swee Kiat step down?
Please, we all need to stand up for the poor child who died and her parents. If nothing is done, then MOE will continue their ways. We are not talking about voting the PAP out, we are merely saying any civil servants, MPs or Ministers who make such grave mistakes SHOULD STEP DOWN!
Rating: +13 (from 15 votes)
June 7, 2015 at 11:39 am (Quote)
Trust only myself:
All these expeditions are for commercial purposes and some stalk holders are making money……wonder if any staff from school or MOE benefitted from these.
I hope all parents of the children who attended this trip make a CPIB report. You may be right, someone may be benefiting from all these. Let the police investigate.
Rating: +7 (from 9 votes)
Really with Andrew Teo and the cybernuts, the PAP doesn’t need clowns like mothership, Jason Chua and FAPAP.
I posted this
I find this post disgusting. And I’m disgusted TeamTRe put this up.
Here’s what a prominent blogger and now Oppo politican says:
21 mins ·
#SabahQuake It is unnecessary for anyone to point fingers at the Tanjong Katong Primary School or Ministry of Education. It is a natural disaster – an accident.
Of course, MOE should assuage the public’s concerns about how our schools gauge that the learning trips and/or character-building trips that are organised for its students overseas are safe. But now’s not the time for that.
Now is the time to mourn those that have passed away in this tragedy. And also a time to hope – hope that those that are missing can be found.
It is highly irresponsible for anyone to declare those that are still missing as ‘dead’. The families of those that are missing must still hope – and we too must hope with them.
Meanwhile, I must commend MOE for being timely in information dissemination to those that are affected and to the general public. The Minister himself is on the ground – what else can we ask for.
MOE’s updates are here: http://www.moe.gov.sg/…/media-statements-on-students-in-mt-….
There are not many people who have become multimillionaires as a direct result of misbehaving at school, but Jack Cator is one of them.
Back in 2005, the then 16-year-old was annoyed that his secondary school in Norfolk, eastern England, had put strict blocks on its computer network, to prevent the pupils from accessing music and games websites.
So, as a keen computer programmer he decided to use his knowledge to hack the system.
“I thought it would be fun to bypass the school’s filters,” says Mr Cator, now 26.
Fast forward 10 years, and Mr Cator has just sold the business – of which he was the boss and sole owner – for £40m.
HMA, which Mr Cator turned into one of the world’s largest VPN companies without the need for any outside investors, has been bought by global software group AVG.
Read article to find out what HMA stands for: shumething Amos might say.
I don’t know what were the PAP administration’s intentions when it passed the Protection From Harassment Act. But based on the reports of the constructive, nation-building media of the comments made by comments and commentaries by
Judases journalists , I got the impression that the Act was meant to protect the ordinary S’porean who could not afford to sue for defamation. It was an “affordable” remedy for us mere mortals. not multi-millionaire ministers or govt agencies etc.
It was a shield.
The PAP administration’s public statements certainly did not suggest that it was meant to be added to the tool-kit of sledge hammers and power drills that the state, rich people and others could use to “suppress” criticism; something the usual human rights kay pohs said it would be used for.
Well the ang moh tua kee kays have been proven right. It is a sword, not a shield.
That it happened to TOC, the promoter and champion of irresponsible, bullying hooligans like Roy Ngerng, his side-kick New Citizen Han Hui Hui, and Amos Yee, Mummy’s Pet, is no consolation; though it might seem poetic justice of sorts.
And it could have been worse. A charge for making comments about the late Harry Lee that were likely to cause distress to people who saw the comments was dropped by the prosecution in Amos Yee’s case. The charge was earlier stood down. The charge was based on the above act. If anyone can defend himself, it’s certainly Harry.
Today, Amos will stand trial and if he’s going to base his defence on his “right” of free speech, he should think again given that yesterday, a high court judge dismissed his application that the bail conditions, which forbid him from uploading or distributing any content online until his case has concluded, amounted to a gag order*.
It seems he believes in a constitutional right to suka suka say what he likes: Yee was remanded after the pre-trial conference, as he refused to set his blog posts to private. He had earlier flouted bail conditions by publishing two posts on his blog. His lawyer Alfred Dodwell said the teen feels very strongly that he has not done anything wrong with his posts.
“The Constitution does provide for a person to have the freedom of speech and expression, hence he feels very strongly that he is just doing that,” said Mr Dodwell**. (CNA last Friday).
Well M Ravi, Maruah and all the other ang moh tua kee kay pohs will be cheering Amos on (There’s a soccer match going on, the poor boy [Amos] is the ball, and the crowd watches in morbid fascination as the own-goals pile up on both sides. The new normal way to win, wrote a perceptive reader of this article https://atans1.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/amos-parents-finally-got-it-walk-the-talk-amoss-groupies/#comments).
Sadly for Amos, the constitution is pretty clear on the limits on free speech here.
(2) Parliament may by law impose —
“He was anxious to find a response that would enable the mainstream media to keep its eyeballs. He wanted us at Singapore Press Holdings to think about the way forward.”
Well SPH, and the rest of constructive, nation-building media didn’t do what they were ordered to, did they? That despite throwing serious money and other resources at the problem.
Cybernauts. do not think the “right” tots.
For society the problem is that in cyberspace, anything goes. There is plenty of misleading information and lies out there from the likes of Roy Ngerng and Ng Kok Lim. And there is the bigotry of lazy abstraction, when commenting: “PAP always wrong”. (Mind you this does balance the “PAP is always right” of the SPH and MediaCorp publications, channels and stations.)
Then there is the issue of only listening to others who share one’s views and values, rather than being exposed to different views. Again the SPH and MediaCorp publications, channels and stations do the same, to be fair to cyberspace.
During the hearing, Justice Tay Yong Kwang asked Mr Dodwell what was so difficult about complying with these social media conditions. “They just have to learn to curb themselves,” he said.
UBS uses S’pore developed AI
Sqreem Technologies Pte. Ltd. beat some 80 teams competing in the Innovation Challenge, a contest organized by Switzerland’s biggest bank that offered S$40,000 ($30,000) and a potential contract to the winner. Their task: Extract the information most relevant to an individual client from an explosion of data and deliver this tailored content to clients’ mobile phones, iPads and other digital devices.
“Banking is one of the most rudimentary industries when it comes to digitalization,” Dirk Klee, chief operating officer for UBS wealth management and responsible for digital initiatives, said in an interview. “
Big data co here
Goldman Invests in Big Data in Asia Goldman Sachs has invested the bulk of a $56 million round of financing for Antuit, a data analytics start-up in Singapore, in a move that indicates Goldman’s interest in new big data technologies in Asia, The Financial Times reports.
TRE should be commended for telling us that Victor Lye who is really work hard for PAP in Aljunied
is the Chief Executive of Shenton Insurance Pte Ltd [Link].
He must be a very lucky CEO to be given 1.5 years leave by his company, so as to enable him to “focus on his grassroots work”.
According to information from ACRA, Shenton Insurance is owned by Parkway Holdings. In other words, it is a subsidiary of Parkway Holdings:
If Mr Lye were to be an opposition member, would he have been given 1.5 years leave to do “grassroots work” by Shenton Insurance too?
What do you think?
And telling us that
While Minister of State for National Development Desmond Lee is busy trying to “fix” opposition town council AHPETC, his own Jurong Town Council appears to be clueless in stopping rats running wild in his GRC.
A Facebook user uploaded videos and photos on his page yesterday (16 Dec) of what appeared to be rats scurrying around a grass patch:
Gd investigative work using Google. If only TOC would do this too rather than behaving like the WP’s version of the PAP’s ST. But then TRE’s public face is an IT scholar, and elite school-boy that does credit to Catholic High (unlike a certain blur drum major)..
The recent comment that “D” in “MDA” ahould be replaced by “R” for R”Regulatory” to better reflect its role reminded me that in August in Russia, laws were enacted forcing bloggers with more than 3,000 daily readers to register with the mass media regulator.
With most bloggers being friendly to the Oppo, if not cheering them on, maybe time for MDA to follow suit to make sure
SuperWimp AhLoong and the MIW beats theBlueClones and the Mad Dog gang. .
And this after screwing us, itself and shareholders (us again) on footie*. WTF!
In mid May it was reported that
SingTel customers will be able to access a new high-speed WiFi network that is being progressively rolled out at popular shopping malls and underground MRT stations.
According to a statement by the telco, SingTel’s WiFi network average typical speed will range from 4 to 10Mbps, which is five times faster than typical free public WiFi services. More details below**.
I was surprised given that SingTel is cannibalisling its 3G and 4G networks with this rol out. No free lunch in S’pore esp for the public where TLCs, TLCs and the PAP admin is concerned. it’s pay and pay.
Recently, I came across the u/m which seems to explain why SingTel is rolling out wifi:
Once viewed as a threat to their precious 3G/4G services, Wi-Fi is now seen as the most cost-effective way of helping mobile-phone companies meet their customers’ insatiable demand for bandwidth. The recent explosion in data traffic—especially among mobile users viewing video on their smartphones and tablets from websites such as YouTube, Netflix and Hulu or using popular messaging apps like Vine and Snapchat—has forced mobile carriers to start building their own Wi-Fi networks.
One reason they are doing so is to prevent the rapidly expanding number of public hotspots—in cafes, stores and other places—from hogging too much of the traffic and threatening their cellular revenues. Another is to offload as much of the video streaming as possible from their congested cellular networks to Wi-Fi’s unlicensed public bands. Doing so not only helps them maintain the quality of service for cell-phone customers trying to send text messages or make phone calls, but it also reduces their capital-investment requirements. Installing Wi-Fi hotspots is easier and cheaper than erecting cell towers—or, indeed, having to bid for more wireless spectrum.
And it’s a free lunch for SingTel
Besides, public hotspots can be made to piggyback, at minimal cost, on broadband routers installed in people’s homes***.
*It’s unlikely to have made money on its footie rights given the small market here.
**Coverage is currently available at more than 100 hotspots at 11 locations such as Raffles City and Plaza Singapura. SingTel said that it will progressively roll out the network to all CapitaMall shopping centres.
Hotspots will also be available at Orchard, City Hall and Raffles Place stations from Aug 22 onwards.
The service will be progressively rolled out to 16 MRT stations on the North-East Line, as well as eight other stations with high commuter traffic over the next nine months.
This new WiFi service is part of SingTel’s new Combo plans, which offers high-speed WiFi usage in addition to 4G data bundles.
From Aug 19, the Combo plans will replace SingTel’s existing plans for customers who renew their contracts or subscribe to new lines.
Customers will enjoy unlimited WiFi usage until 31 July 2015 as part of its launch promotion. Subsequently WiFi data allowance will be capped at 2GB.
Combo plan customers will be able to switch automatically between the 3G, 4G and SingTel WiFi network without a manual password login.
SingTel hopes to set up 1,000 hotspots at more than 100 locations across Singapore by March 2015. It said that the numbers are expected to double by March 2016.
For the full list of SingTel WiFi hotspot locations, please visit www.singtel.com/stwifi.
***And offices and shops.
Last Sunday, SunT carried a story in its inside pages on what Roy and H# did on Saturday when they could not protest at hong Lim. They and two friends held a picnic at Hong Lim and received well-wishers.
I tot this was a classy, quai lan way of reacting to the authorities’ cancellation of their planned protest. So I was really surprised that their usual cheer-leaders, and anti-PAP activists did not report or highlight the story.
Seems they only want to sensationalise the hooliganish behaviour of these two, not the subtleties they are capable of.
Btw, wonder if Roy and H3 have these genes?
A genetic analysis of almost 900 offenders in Finland has revealed two genes associated with violent crime.
Those with the genes were 13 times more likely to have a history of repeated violent behaviour.
The authors of the study, published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, said at least 5-10% of all violent crime in Finland could be attributed to individuals with these genotypes.
Trolls are sensitive to exposure. In European mythologoy, trolls lived in the dark and froze to stone when exposed to light. “The Hobbit” (the book at least) has one such example.
So hunt out and expose the PAP IB. Less PAPpies come next GE. Oppo needs all the votes it can muster.
More on the dead “troll” http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-leicestershire-29501646.
And The Sun quotes research that suggests as many as one million Britons could be considered internet trolls.
Jamie Bartlett, who has researched the phenomenon, writes a feature in which he says trolls rarely fit the “crackpot outsider” stereotype.
“Often they are angry with the world and feel they’ve been hard done by in some way. And social media gives them a place to air it, a bit like shouting at the television.
“Often they are lonely or have low self-esteem. But others think trolling is an art form, a way of defending free speech.
“When a victim hits back, it makes the troll feel like a somebody – instead of a nobody.”
Jack Ma, Alibaba’s founder, is a hero. He slew eBay in China. Now he is going up against new giants by shaking up China’s state-dominated finance industry. His business, the Zhejiang Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group, processes payments, sells insurance and runs one of the world’s largest money market funds, placing it in competition with banks controlled by the Chinese government. It is a precarious position.
Asean’s has huge e-commerce potential. Seems contrary to the usual data cited, Asean has internet penetration of 32%, not the accepted wisdom of 10%. Smartphones have multiplied as has their use to access the internet.
http://blogs.ft.com/beyond-brics/2014/07/08/asean-nears-its-ecommerce-moment-report/ (Free but need to register)
Earlier this yr, China’s Alibaba Group has signed an agreement to invest S$312.5 million (US$248.88 million) for a 10.35 percent stake* in Singapore’s postal service, SingPost.
The funds injection will see Alibaba-subsidiary, Alibaba Investment, acquire 30 million existing ordinary shares and 190.096 new ordinary shares, said SingPost in a statement. The two companies signed an agreement that would also allow them to assess the possibility of setting up a new joint venture related to global e-commerce logistics.
*Alibaba bot roughly 190 million new Singapore Post shares and 30 million existing treasury shares for S$1.42 apiece, an 8.4% discount to SingPost’s closing share price of S$1.55. Stock cheonged to the 1.75 level where it remains.
Interesting that this never ever got reported by our constructive, nation-building media or mentioned by Yaacob, the propaganda ministry, MDA and IDA
The solution to improving our score is ensuring speedy and cheap online access should top the list. So come on Yaacob, MDA and IDA: stop trying to fix netizens and get us cheaper online access. Example the 4G charges were added on.
More on the index:
A new study by the Boston Consulting Group, to be presented at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week … “Greasing the Wheels of the Internet Economy”, its purpose is to make it easier to identify points of friction that hold back the digital economy.
At the heart of the report is an “e-friction” index. The authors took no fewer than 55 indicators (from “internet bandwidth per capita” and “average mobile connection speed” to “strength of intellectual property protection” and “press freedom”) and calculated a score for each of the 65 countries covered, which rises the higher the friction (see chart on this page. The full country ranking can be found here).
… The usual suspects from northern Europe (Sweden, Finland, Denmark) end up on top, with HK 5th, Oz 14th and S’pore 15th.
… Such rankings often depend on how the indicators are weighed. BCG argues that infrastructure factors, such as the quality and cost of internet access, are the most important sources of friction, and bases half of its index on these. Other types of indicators, such as those that measure barriers that deter companies and consumers from adopting the internet, count much less. But even with a more even weighting, the authors say, the results would not be much different.
A more interesting finding is a clear correlation between a country’s rank in BCG’s index and the size of its internet economy: the lower the friction, the larger the share of online-related activities as a percentage of GDP …
What can countries do to move up the curve? Each country is different, the authors of the study argue. But ensuring speedy and cheap online access should top the list.
Employ robot writers to replace the Chua sisters, Han, Warren and Yaacob’s sis (Even though she needs the job as Cherian, her hubbie, is leaving NTU soon), among many others.
Not as though the technology isn’t there.
The Los Angeles Times was the first newspaper to publish a story about an earthquake … – thanks to a robot writer.
Journalist and programmer Ken Schwencke created an algorithm that automatically generates a short article when an earthquake occurs.
Mr Schwencke told Slate magazine that it took around three minutes for the story to appear online.
But let’s be fair, robots could be used productively by the anti-PAP paper activists at TOC* and many other blogs (TRE excepted, ’cause TRE makes it very, very clear that its mission is to provide the alternative voices not reported in our constructive, nation-building media.). Robots could replace regular TRE posters like “oxygen”. Kishore of the LKY School should install one to produce his chim pro-China, anti-Western; or pro PAP pieces.
A serious piece on productivity: https://atans1.wordpress.com/2014/03/13/productivity-ageing-population-immigration/
Update at 10am: Thinking about it, I too can use a robot to bitch about that ACS sneerer, VivianB, Auntie Sylvia, her baiyee and the two GGs. Also for my praise of WP Low, the scholar and elite schoolboy at TRE and the SDP RI doctors treating
Mad Dog Chee. My very serious point is that when we don’t think thru the issues, but instinctively give way to our prejudices when talking, writing; we might as well turn over the writing, talking to robots.
*Ya I got bias against TOC https://atans1.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/neighbours-show-up-the-spore-system-for-gd-and-bad/
The education minister has been in ST’s headlines talking about making all schools gd schools. Tot he once said all schools are gd schools? So taz only an “aspiration’?. Bit like “one united nation , regardless of race, language or religion’?
Here’s a constructive suggestion: try online education?
“In the future, I suspect the best students who don’t have elite high schools to choose from will opt for online education. I find the prospect of a single great teacher lecturing on a subject to tens of thousands of students more realistic than improving the skills of tens of thousands of teachers”— On “The disruption to come”, Feb 11th 2014
Can then reduce elite schools in S’pore to RI, St Nick and SCGS. Yes RGS is not an elite school.
If there were an updated list of the Magnificent Seven bloggers, there is a gd chance that Roy Ngerng (Heart Truths) would be one of them. He is very active (online and in real world e.g. calling for a protest to protest conservancy increases in PAP-occupied areas), passionate in wanting regime change (via the ballot box), and his pieces have lots of charts and colour to make them easier reads.
While skimming thru the comments on a recent tract of his that TRE republished, I came across a post which asks Roy to focus on the fence-sitters, not the converted. It points out that only the true believers will read his pieces, thus wasting his hard efforts of writing the Heart Truths. He asks Roy to modify his writings to capture the “fence sitters”.As someone who wants (for starters) the PAP to have a less than two-thirds majority, I hope Roy listens. And I hope too that other polemic tract-writers move on from preaching to the converted (25- 30%) to trying to propagate their visions of S’pore to the 35% of voters (those who voted for Tan Cheng Bock)that are willing change their views and to listen to reasoned arguments, not haranguing. After all, the PAP does that already. Better to do the opposite of what is boring and annoying people? Unless the bloggers think that the PAP way is the “right” way.
I confess that this is the first time that I actually read yr article. I doubt if more than 20 TRE readers will read the entire 8000-word that you have spent so much time & effort on.
It’s a shame as there is much to be garnered. So, I’d like to say thank you personally.
If you will permit me 2 observations.
I assume that your intent, judging from ALL yr activities reported, is to inform and persuade voters to your line of thought. Well, most of the readers @TRE do not need much persuasion, if any at all. It’s the ‘some’ amongst us, the fence-sitters and govt supporters who you should be writing mostly for.
1) Will they take >20 mins (400 word/min) to go thro’? When there are so many other topics fighting for their attention?
2) Putting myself into a PAP supporter’s shoes, I would already be mentally tuned out when I start to read. A fence-sitter may be less so.
That being the case, the use of ‘hypocrisy’ is a loaded and emotive term that will straightaway call up defensive mechanism when reading.
As I understand,
hy·poc·ri·sy = The practice of professing beliefs, feelings, or virtues that one does not hold or possess; falseness.
the condition of a person pretending to be something he is not, especially in the area of morals or religion; a false presentation of belief or feeling.
I think that trying to convert a political view thro’ emotion via the written word is a very difficult task. To accuse one’s preferred party of ‘hypocrisy’ is a moral judgment. I doubt anyone likes that except detractors of the accused.
Approaching from a rationale or more objective angle would, I think, be more helpful to one’s intent of persuading another to weigh the evidence about to be presented – and, hopefully, change his view.
Perhaps, it’s just PAP’s blind side, if deliberate, that is dictating their warped approaches to policy matters. It’s hard for any supporter or fence-sitter to see any ‘pretence’ on PAP’s part. PAP actually and sincerely believe that their course of action is the right one for SGP.
That’s why many of those, we all know personally, who disagree with the policies would con’t to vote for PAP – because they see only sincerity, even if perhaps, misplaced, but no hypocrisy.
Likewise, why would they throw their hat in with an oppo that insist, incorrectly and maliciously (to them), on hypocrispy when they honestly see none? As if issues of national import are so cut & dry.
If my assumptions are wrong, pls disregard my rumblings. Rgds, 2cents.
Another post on another piece asks him to keep his arguments short and sweet. Gd point: he takes three continuous posts in TRE to response to a critic. I kid you not, scroll to the comments: http://www.tremeritus.com/2014/03/10/roy-ngerng-is-taking-you-for-a-ride/. Again this is something many anti-PAP bloggers have to learn: keep their pieces short and sweet. If they want to write longish pieces, then learn from Alex Au. His pieces are long but they don’t feel long because he knows how to entertain the reading while being polemical.
And here’s a blogger http://trulysingapore.wordpress.com/2014/03/09/much-to-thank-for-beyond-the-last-50-years/ who is very concise, insightful, factual, and no bull or false rhetoric that Roy can usefully imitate.
If you are reading this. Please do not think me impertinent to offer you a small suggestion from an old geezer. Self imposed yourself to write articles to no more than 2 pages on MSWord using 11 font. Long articles such as the those you typically wrote don’t win arguments, short and sharp ones do. By limiting yourself, you will find efficiency of words and facts and collectively this will carry a bigger punch. In these days of short attention span, short and sharp riposte, not many care to read long articles. In the corporate world, your boss will tell you that if you cannot write a memo within 2 paragraphs, then don’t write it because no one will bother to read.
For some fairness and balance, here are two comments that are not constructive or flattering to Roy:
: Fully Agree:
I was surprised when Uncle Leong started co-authoring articles with this person with a weird surname.
He did not present any scintillating revelations but seemed to just grouse, show bar charts (and push the agenda for niche groups).
Now he has his facts wrong. How does he help Uncle Leong I wonder?
Cynical Investor: Taz the trouble with Roy, he doesn’t do his home work. And undermines his basic thesis (which I and many others share which is: “Why pay more when there are surplus funds?”)
This will keep those TRE readers who accuse me of being a PAPpy mole, the opportunity to spawning their disinfo. They members of PAP’s IB? They can now go earn their peanuts per post.
This blogger is ambivalent about Bertha Henson. The conventional wisdom is that this once Sith Lord in the making changed her spots after retiring from SPH* where she was a cyber warrior (general rank) at ST, no less, into a Jedi warrior. One of these days, I’ll go into the conspiracy theory as to why she could be a Trojan horse (and explain the inconvenient fact to said theory that MDA fixed her). But as this is Christmas, I’ll not be that Gringie.
Whether on not she is part of a black ops against us cowboys of S’pore’s cyberspace, she writes well, very well. She’s pretty witty too, and has mastered the dark art of black humour, if not satire. Example: http://berthahenson.wordpress.com/2013/12/14/personally-speaking-no-fund-intended/. And she loves journalism; she did a lovely piece on her accreditation to an activist event: sorry lazy to find the article to link to it.
But despite being treated as Jedi both by the cowboys and the MDA and ST, she recently was attacked by two tua kee cyber activists (both ladies) on Facebook for writing http://berthahenson.wordpress.com/2013/12/18/a-sunday-problem/. Read it for yrself before going on to read their comments, and my take on the piece and them.
I’ll not name them, ’cause its Christmas and I’m no Grinch or Krampus.
One said: What a lovely way to dehumanise a group of people: make assumptions and fall back on stereotypes, while coming across as reasoned and reasonable. Dear Bertha, the problems facing migrant workers go beyond what happens to them on a Sunday. Of course, we only notice them on Sundays because they’re busy working themselves to the bone, building our city, cleaning our loos, clearing our trash and staying out of YOUR way the rest of the week. Where they go on their rest day really isn’t anyone’s problem but their own. Would YOU like your boss to tell you what to do when you’re not working?
It is a very condescending article. From the very first paragraph you can see the belittling and patronising: “We have a problem. We have hundreds of thousands of foreign workers – and we don’t know what to do with them on Sundays. And they probably don’t know what to do with themselves on Sundays either.”
Why do we need to do anything with them on their off day – it is THEIR off day. And who are we to say that they don’t know what to do with themselves, simply because from our standpoint that don’t seem to be doing what we would prefer them to do (which is what, attend Alcoholics Anonymous and play friendly games of basketball in their dorms?)
The second paragraph is just as facepalm-worthy: “The foreign maid can stay “home” and be paid for not taking the day off. And even if they are out, they’re not likely to get into a drunken stupor and throw pieces of concrete around. They’ll just crowd somewhere until someone shoos them somewhere else.”
The fact that foreign domestic workers stay “home” on their day off potentially means that they will also be made to work on their day off. This is not a situation we should be okay with, much less use as a sort of “ah this is okay for FDWs, but what about the other migrant workers” example.
Also, migrant workers in Little India are also “not likely to get into a drunken stupor and throw pieces of concrete around”; just because a group of men did it once on one Sunday night – out of all the many Sunday nights over the many years that they DIDN’T do it – doesn’t make that entire group of people suddenly prone to doing it.
And the last sentence of that paragraph: “They’ll just crowd somewhere until someone shoos them somewhere else.” Like that’s an okay state of affairs too! Oh, these FDWs don’t bother us, they just hang about with their friends and if we Singaporeans don’t like it just shoo them away lah! <- How condescending and dehumanising is that?!
So just in the first two paragraphs already almost every single sentence is offensive. Wah lau.
Foreign workers should be able to do whatever they want on their days off. It is the Singaporean mindset – the one that tells us that we enlightened beings must take care of “those from the Indian subcontinent” because they don’t know what to do with themselves – that should change.
I think Ms Henson is having a dig at the govt’s uncaring attitude to solving a problem, any problem: everything has to be neat and tidy, and damn the human cost.
My take on her critics is that these two gals don’t do humour, at least when it comes to FTs. Or they may think that the issue should not be the subject of any humour: too serious to joke about. Bit like the attitude of the authorities in the aftermath of the riot: no alcohol, and apparently no Maruah meeting in restaurant private room which employs FTs. On the latter, scared that FTs will riot? Come on Maruah are wimps in action: talk cock, sing song. Sorry KH, can’t resist that.
But to be fair to the gals , one of Henson’s BN team “Liked” the second entry. So maybe I’m wrong about said lady activists. Either that or her disciple is a Judas, or a sotong boy. I suspect the last is most likely.
Merry Christmas. Keep on feasting.
*A more classy, intelligent version of what Tan Kin Lian did after he retired from NTUC Income: resigning from the PAP and standing as the People’s Voice in the presidential election, where he lost his deposit and deprived us of cocking a snook at the PAP. The PAP’s preferred candidate won by around three hundred votes. But to be fair, TKL fought the gd fight for those who invested in securities that invested in credit-default notes. (Declaration of interest: I helped out there) Investors got a raw deal, but it could have been worse if not for TKL.( https://atans1.wordpress.com/2011/04/01/helping-retail-investors-the-hk-way-and-the-spore-way/#more-7316 and https://atans1.wordpress.com/2010/08/06/what-abt-high-notes-sm-goh/)
Yaacob the Info minister wrote on Facebook a few days ago that many agencies have worked hard in the past weeks to strengthen the security of Singapore’s computer systems and websites*, and those responsible for the recent hacking incidents have been arrested or are being investigated**.
Taz gd, but what about making sure that IDA works hard and competently to give the public info on cyber security accurately, and in a timely manner? Rather than inaccurately, and only after cyber leaks and DRUMS.
Going by its recent ingloriously track record, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) should be renamed Inforomm Dysfunctional Authority because it’s so dysfunctional in communicating info on cyber security and ICT matters.
It can’t even explain to our constructive, nation-building local journalists that the PMO’s website was not hacked. Granted that our well-paid hacks are not the most intelligent people in S’pore, but surely Yaacob’s finest could have told them in simple English, “PMO’s website was not hacked into”?
Singapore ICT regulator Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) was cited by local media reports to blame a vulnerability in Google’s search bar, embedded in the two websites, as the cause of the breach. In a media briefing to which only local media were invited …
… a Google spokesperson told ZDNet in an e-mail Wednesday: “It has come to our attention that the PMO’s website recently experienced an attack in the search functionality of the site run by Google’s Custom Search Engine site-search widget.
“After investigation, it appears that the code in the Google custom search engine is safe and the vulnerability lies with the coding on the webpage.”
While IDA declined to comment further on this issue as it is currently under police investigation, ZDNet understands the regulator was misquoted in local news reports. Rather than Google’s search bar, it had instead pointed to a vulnerability in the search function which the hackers were able to exploit and redirect visitors to the external webpages.
At the very least, IDA gave the impression that our cybersecurity machinery was the equivalent of the flood prevention team when Yaacob was “flooder-in-chief”.
Now onto an earlier, and more major, failure to communicate. Remember the Saturday a few weeks ago when govt websites suddenly closed for “routine maintenance’? Although they were soon up, netizens suspicions were aroused and they started playing DRUMS in the absence of authoritative info.
And they were correct to think that there problems, only not hacking but cock-ups.
Only on Monday evening (after a memo surfaced on the internet), IDA admitted the problems in accessing several Singapore government websites over the weekend were due to technical problems that arose during maintenance on Saturday afternoon. While the glitches have been rectified, people accessing these websites may continue to face intermittent access as maintenance was still ongoing.
In this day and age, IDA should communicate openly with the public. After all, this is not North Korea, even if our media ratings are close to that of the North Koreans than that to the US or UK.
I leave it to this blogger who wrote before IDA admitted that there were cock-ups, not juz “routine maintenance” to explain what I mean:
Ironically, the IDA can look at the way SingTel updated its customers in the hours after a fire at a telephone exchange just weeks ago. Though the damage was way bigger, angering a lot more customers, at least they knew what was going on.
That itself reflects badly on the nation’s cyber security efforts. “Self pwn” is the phrase that comes to mind when you bring down your own networks inadvertently.”
Recently, CNA reported, Singapore’s Acting Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, Lawrence Wong, has said that countries in Asia need to adapt to emerging trends in social media, in order to get the new generation more engaged in literature and the arts.
Maybe he sould have a talk with Yaacob and s/o Devan Nair who seem clueless about the effect of social media and the internet on public communications and PR in general. Strange this cluelessness, given their roles in govt as public communicators and PR. or they juz there for wayang.
One final tot. I’m surprised that neither GG nor TRE nor TOC tot it fit to ask if the people responsible for website security in general or the maintenance cock-ups, in particular, were FTs or true-blue S’poreans.
This blogger has argued we need a S’porean core in cyber security.
One “career path” often joked about, but taken somewhat seriously, is to get into an IT management role in a bank then outsource the dirty work to vendors, sit back and enjoy a Dilbert moment every day.
Now, when that dirty work is cyber security, there is a problem. It’s an area where you can’t be an expert without getting your hands dirty. Yes, there are security solutions out there to tap on, but it is important to know your own servers well. How can you secure your home if you don’t know where the holes are in your fences?
Similarly, when it comes to defending national infrastructure, it pays to have a ready pool of experts, with actual hands-on experience.
This work cannot be easily outsourced, since it may involve getting access to sensitive information, say, military secrets. A Singaporean core, to borrow the government’s term, may be needed in such as an operation.
But will our FT-loving govt listen? Worse it seems the govt’s model of “Talent is two-timing new citizen Raj or Tammy’s killer or the FTs that beat up S’poreans and then fled S’pore (one was even given PR after the beating), or a violent, cheating PRC shop assistant, or PRC hawkers or a looney, violent bank director.
*“A quote from a decade and a half ago: ‘Secure web servers are the equivalent of heavy armoured cars. The problem is, the roads are subject to random detours, anyone with a screwdriver can control the traffic lights and there are no police.’”
—Richard Guy Briggs on “Besieged”, Nov 9th 2013
**Taz before the latest reported hack of schools’ sites and a local museum’s mailing list was made public in NZ. Don’t know if you notice, but the local media is downplaying the security implications of the hacks by making them sound trivial.The schools’ hack is “defacement” and the mailing list was described as being on the website. The Hard Truth is that in these cases, servers were broken into.
This is in contrast to the “hack”of PMO’s site which was over-sensationalised. (There was no hack there as reported above. In the PMO’s case, at no time was there any server intrusion. The server was secure.) One wonders if IDA has finally educated the hacks on the basics of cyber security or did it order them to downplay the hacks as the hacks would imply that contrary to Yaacob’s comments about working hard to fix security issues, the cyber security teams are not working hard, or worse, working hard incompetently.
22 23 October 2013: Minister explains use of Criminal Law Temporary Provision Act (http://au.sports.yahoo.com/football/news/article/-/19491410/football-match-fixing-witnesses-fear-reprisals/) on footie fixers.
I recently came across “gotong royong” the American way, or community spirit the capitalist way: in American- speak, the “sharing economy”.
Technology is revolutionising the way Americans catch a cab with a ride now just a click away through mobile phone apps like like Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, Instantcab and Flywheel.
Many of these services are part of the so-called “sharing economy” in which car owners offer to drive strangers in exchange for a “donation”.
But is this the “right” gotong royong that the PAPpies say they want here?
Bet you the Hard Truths that premise the PAP’s governing methods will prevent S’pore from ever going down this route, even though this seems one of several viable solutions (several are needed) to our public tpt and private car problems Remember, NTUC is via the Labour Foundation, the controlling shareholder of ComfortDelgro, the owner of the biggest taxi fleet here, and Temasek’s SMRT has a big taxi fleet too. The former runs most of the buses, while the latter runs most of the trains too. And it might impact the revenue from CoEs.
Seriously, the problem here is that “gotong royong” is contrary to the PAP’s Hard Truth that it is fount of everything. Gotong royong is not compatible with a top-down approach, where there is always a “right” way of doing things.
In “gotong royong”, as in the “sharing economy”, things happen because the
rabble plebs mob community, society, consumer is the driving force, not a benign meritocratic elite. The people realise that there is a problem, issue, and are free (within some, not many, constraints) to work out a solution*. They don’t bitch while waiting for the governing elite to solve the problem, feeling entitled that because said elite is well-paid, they must solve the problem, resolve the issue.
I consider the following to be gotong royong in action, but doubt the PAP ministers urging us to “gotong royong” would agree:
— TOC’s and TRE’s continued existence;
— the various fund raisings for various legal cases where the govt is the defendant;
— the public funding of the deposits of Alex Tan and friends, and the independent team at Tanjong Pagar GRC;
— Nicole Seah raising money for her team’s election expenses;
— the free food and drinks at Gilbert Goh’s Hong Lim Green functions;
— Function 8;
— CHC members who willingly pay the legal fees of church members being prosecuted for false accounting etc;
— pastor Khong’s gang funding a legal suit;
— those who lend sound eqpt and technical help at various Hong Lim Green parties
— the kay pohs trying to help FTs avoid being hung for drug trafficking**;
— those gathering to help the family of Dinesh Raman get justice and closure**;
— the volunteers who help FT manual workers;
— the LGBT community; and
— the dedicated band of enthusiasts who have been trying to draw attention to the cemetery’s [Bukit Brown’s] value. They have succeeded in having it included on the biennial watchlist of the World Monument Fund (WMF), of heritage sites around the world that are in danger.
All these examples and more show that the gotong royong spirit is alive and well. They juz don’t fit the PAP’s narrative, especially the bit that the PA’s and PAP’s grass-root activists are the only selfless, dedicated volunteers. And that in cyberspace, their activists are no match for the the injuns, outlaws and other inhabitants of cowboy towns.
*In the US, there is no hegemonic elite to enforce the top down approach, and stifle innovation or stifle dissent or force recantations from members of the elite turned heretical.
**How come no help Dan Tan? Because he drive 7 series, got properties and China babe? And he not violent, middle class or FT?
For all the highfaluting talk of govt and talk-cock artists especially in the local media, we don’t do things like this even though Burma is in Asean (our backyard):
[I]n Burma – or Myanmar – social media sites and the whole internet have been inaccessible for years.
(If you want to read about SunT left out about the Finnish education system scroll to the end)
This extract from a CNA report last Friday reminded me of an email exchange I had with a new media big cat (not ‘fat” cat) sometime back: Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has addressed some key themes arising from the “Ask the PM” live forum on Channel NewsAsia which took place on Tuesday.
In a posting on his Facebook page on Thursday, he thanked viewers for their questions and comments, but said there were too many questions for him to answer individually.
He addressed key themes including education and housing.
I had suggested how the PAP should have reacted to P Ravi: Instead of using his skin to beat the RAVII DRUMS, it should have used Facebook, the medium he was accused of playing the DRUMS on.
A new media big cat (not “fat cat”) pointed out (his comments slighly edited)
MIW cannot stoop to the same level as the others by responding on fb. It’s typical for anyone to bring the battle to their own familiar turf or battleground. u dun fight in “enemy” territory which limits yr own exposure and not forgetting that the “enemy” territory r flanked by “enemy’s” supporters and so u won’t be able to have the last say.
He quoted Sun Tzu’s “The art of War”, a book that the Chinese generals still swear by and quote. I will not be surprised if the PAP too refers to Sun Tzu when in doubt (PM was from Catholic High and the book is a classic alongside the Analects and the Tao). I too used to be a fan of Sun Tzu (How to win without fighting sounds pretty attractive) until an ang moh by the name of Edward Luttwak (he would have been a strategist during the period of the Three Kingdoms or the Warring States) wrote recently a book on Chinese strategy, and pointed out waz wrong with Sun Tzu’s precepts.
Coming in for criticism by name is Sun Tzu, whose writings of 2,500 years ago, including “The Art of War“, are the main source of what Mr Luttwak calls “the flawed principles of ancient unwisdom”. He grants that the cunning statecraft, stratagems for deception and diplomatic finesse advocated by Sun Tzu may have worked when used by one warring Chinese state against another. But he argues that these doctrines have served China poorly in fending off other adversaries.
With a quick pass through the history of China’s engagement with Jurchens, Khitans, Mongols, Manchus and other Asiatic nomads, he notes that China has been ruled by Hans, its ethnic majority, for only about a third of the past millennium. “While Han generals in charge of large armies were busy quoting Sun Tzu to each other, relatively small numbers of mounted warriors schooled in the rudely effective strategy and tactics of the steppe outmanoeuvred and defeated their forces,” he writes.
The bit about being thrashed regularly by the nomads is a fact, not a Hard Truth.
So if the PAP continues to ignore new media because it is unfamiliar terrain that Sun Tzu says one shld not fight on, it will continue making unnecessary, avoidable PR fiascoes. But maybe it’s beginning to plan abandoning this Sun Tzu precept by recceing the new media terrain. The people behind the Breakfast Network (highly commended by me) and Independent (it sucks), are retired Imperial Stormtroop generals from the Keyboard corps. They could be juz like the German generals who turned on Hitler when Germany was losing, or be like Benedict Arnold (an American rebel hero who offered to surrender a fortress to the British). Or they could be what Sun Tzu recommends using. Only time will tell.
Onto serious matters. The PAP’s brand and message need to be recast for the age of social media (and. new media) in general) and the PM needs to show boldness and political artistry in grabbing his (and that of the PAP’s) share of attention. He can’t rely on the traditional media to help him grab attention. For starters, traditional media is no longer trusted here, especially by the young. Then, too, the traditional media’s market share has diminished. And then there are all the competing celebrities on social media like all those cats’ pixs. And then there is vigilantism of websites like Stomp which have large audiences.
The PM has plenty of competition, be it in the mainstream media or new media.
And besides his style sucks in PR terms. As a double first in Maths from Cambridge, he is familiar with the scientific method: specificity, objectivity, and accountability. These are elements lacking in politics, anywhere in the world, let alone in S’pore, a de-facto one party state. They are lacking because politicians don’t need these skills to win elections. But Angela Merkel has shown that one can have the “scientific method” and be personally popular. And are we not the Prussians of the East? (The Prussians were the Germans’ Germans. Now most of what is now Prussia is in Poland.)
And as I will show on Wednesday, he has problems with the substance of hie messages too.
All in all, the PM and the PAP have a long way to go in the use of new media even with the help of BN and the Independent. Us, injuns and outlaws rule the comboy towns and the territory outside the MSM, govt forts.
Finally on a totally different topic, here’s sumething SunT didn’t tell us about the Finnish education system: Angry Birds creator Rovio has brought Angry Birds Playground, a schools initiative devised with the University of Helsinki in Finland, into the kindergarten classroom of children, aimed at six-year-olds.
With the initiative already in use in Finland, Rovio has now entered into an agreement with schools in China.
“With small children, the Finnish approach to education is very much play-orientated,” says Sanna Lukander, vice president of book publishing at Rovio Entertainment.
“These characters and their world seemed to inspire children. You can’t not think about how you might motivate children to do more than play.”
Games have a larger effect on learning than traditional materials”
Prof Constance Steinkuehler Games scholar
BTW, didn’t read the SunT stuff. Friend who read it told me that it didn’t talk about games. I had earlier sent him the above link given his interest in the Finnish way.
(Or “Don’t be jealous that Kong Hee’s got it all leh”)
Woody Allen* once said that believing in God would be easier if He would show Himself by making a large deposit in a Swiss bank account in the director’s name.
No wonder Kong Hee (RI boy, like that thieving monk, and that ex-bishop (Methodist) of S’pore) is able to convince many people that prosperity gospel works: he is living proof of the $ that it brings. He is married Sun Ho**, who he said has rich, filthy rich, parents***. And he has Wahju Hanafi, as God’s personal ATM on earth:
— An Indonesian businessman and member of the City Harvest Church (CHC) … cast the business of saving souls in terms of a return on investment.
Justifying his $1 million-a-year donation to CHC for its Crossover Project – the church’s way of evangelising through pop music – Wahju Hanafi said: “If I spend $1 million and we win 138,000 souls, that means every soul is worth less than $1,000. To me, that is a good buy.
“I’m a businessman, and for every investment that I (make), I have to see a return. To me, in this case, the return is the souls that we are winning. If (we) are not winning souls, then I will probably pull back my money.” (BT report)
— THERE was talk of love gifts like a Sentosa condo, expensive weddings and sponsorships so pop singer Ho Yeow Sun could receive bonuses.
Next, much has been said by the magnificient seven bloggers and other lesser mortals about the intolerance of the PAP govt of views that do not fit the “right” narrative.Sadly, netizens too can be be a pretty intolerant bunch, reminding me of the biblical passage: “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone …”.
*A stockbroker is “Someone who invests your money until it’s all gone.”
The govt likes to warn about the dangers of subsidies, forever quoting the deficits in the West. Well what about telling us about problems nearer home? And how come it’s ok to “subsidise” HDB flats at home? ‘Cause it not really a subsidy is what the usual suspects would argue.
Malaysia has cut fuel subsidies for the first time in more than two years as it tries to reduce its budget deficit.
The subsidy on petrol has been cut by 20 sen (6 cents; 4 pence) a litre and on diesel by 20 to 80 sen a litre.
Prime Minister Najib Razak said the cuts would result in savings of about 3.3bn ringgit ($1bn; £650m) a year.
The government spent 24bn ringgit on fuel subsidies last year, which contributed to a widening budget deficit.
Malaysia’s budget deficit was 4.5% of its gross domestic product (GDP) last year.
Some analysts said that the cut in fuel subsidies was an attempt by the government to increase investor confidence and persuade them to leave their money in the country.
Malaysia’s ratio of public debt to gross domestic product (GDP) “is approaching worrying leve according to a Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BOAML) report. It said that the country’s debt-to-GDP ratio had risen to 54.6% at the end of the second quarter, from 53.8% in the first quarter.
The figure is just short of the country’s mandated debt ceiling of 55% of GDP. In the 1960s, the limit was made law by then-finance minister Tan Siew Sin to ensure fiscal prudence.
BOAML said that it could worsen. “Rising longer-term bond yields (and hence higher debt-servicing costs) may accelerate the climb.”
Meanwhile, total debt including guarantees is piling up.
“Government guaranteed debt came in at RM147.3 billion (S$56.4 billion) in the second quarter, slightly lower than RM147.8 billion in the first quarter. Adding this to public debt brings the quasi-public debt to about 70.2 per cent of GDP at the end of the second quarter, up from 69.4 per cent during the first quarter.” [BOA report added after first publication)]
Other Asean round-up news
Thailand‘s Thaksinonmics runs into trouble
Thaksinomics has always been about two things. First, it was about establishing a secure hold over the voters, and in that it has unquestionably been successful.
But it is also supposed to be about driving the domestic economy.
The original schemes for micro-credit, affordable healthcare and local product promotion have lifted the living standards of millions of poorer Thais, as has this government’s decision to raise the minimum wage.
But the benefits of the car and rice purchase schemes are more doubtful, especially given their cost.
Thailand still remains heavily dependent on exports and on foreign direct investment for its growth.
What Viki’s US$ 200m exit says about S’pore’s, M’sia’s and Indonesia’s startup environment
And one of the reasons for the flight of money from Indonesia, is it’s failure to tackle the rising cost of its fuel subsidy. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-23015511
CNA Group’s Vietnam-based subsidiary, CNA-HTE Vietnam Co, has landed a $10.6 million contract to renovate, upgrade and expand the domestic terminals in Ho Chi Minh’s Tan Son Nhat International Airport.
Under this project, CNA will provide mechanical, engineering and plumbing services such as the air-conditioning, ventilation and electrical systems at the airport’s new two-storey domestic terminal. CNA will also upgrade the airport’s existing domestic terminal, which will be equipped with a new bus terminal building and a VIP lounge. Its roof will be upgraded.
The project is slated for completion in October next year and will contribute to the group’s financial performance for the fiscal year ending Dec 31, 2013. It boosted CNA’s order book to $74.2 million, from $63.6 million as at June 30.
This is CNA’s second airport-related project in South-east Asia this year; it won a contract for Laos’ Luang Prabang Airport in April for common-use terminal equipment, typically used to facilitate passenger check-ins. BT
The irony is the opposition made gains where there is almost full employment, the country peaceful and prosperous.
(http://www.pressrun.net/weblog/2013/08/singapore-prime-ministers-and-election-results.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+rana+%28pressrun.net%29 I commend this blogger who usually has interesting, unpredectible perspectives. Not one of the usual suspects, whose rants can be surmised even without reading their articles: juz scan the titles.)
The govt in Norway is expected to lose an election on 9th September, even though eonomic growth was at 2.6% year-on-year in the second quarter and unemployment at just 3.4%, while the current-account surplus is huge: nearly 14% of GDP.
One could argue that because things are so gd, people are willing to take risks, experiment.
When times are bad, if the ones suffering badly are a smallish minority, and the majority, while unhappy, are fearful of what can happen, the majority of voters will opt for “Better the devil we know” We saw that in 2001 when an election was called after 9/11. If Islamic terrorists could successfully attack Metropolis, which place was safe? And if there was a resulting global recession, who better than the PAP to handle it for S’pore? Certainly better than JBJ’s lot, even though the WP had juz kicked JBJ out as leader.
But the classic example was UK during the early yrs of Thatcher’s tenure. Despite massive unemployment she won a second term (helped by winning a war). The unemployed voted against her, but those with jobs trusted her govt more than they did the opposition Labour party, which was seen as incompetent economically (strikes, IMF loan when it was governing).
Connected with the issue of experimentation when times are gd, is that people get tired of the same govt. The present Norwegian govt has been in power since 2005. As the PAP has been in power since 1959 (UMNO and allies in M’sia since 1957), it’s a testament to their tenacity and public goodwill that the PAP and UMNO are still in power. Even the LDP in Japan has lost power for two spells before regaining it.
The author of the above quote puts the unpopularity of the S’pore govt to the internet:
The internet seems to have been a game-changer. In the first post-Twitter general election, in 2011, the People’s Action Party (PAP) won only 60.1 per cent of the vote, its lowest share since independence, while the opposition secured six seats, more than ever before. (Twitter was launched only in 2006.)
He has a point because the internet
… proved a real pest,
Critics online all the time,
How do you make ‘em toe the line?
But let’s not forget. In the last GE 60% voted for the PAP. Taz a gd majority by any standard except that of the PAP itself and S’poreans. Remember, we used to give it 70-over % of the popular vote, and all the seats in parliament in the 70s.
True the PAP’s “preferred” candidate won the PE by a very short nose. But the man that nearly became president was someone that for many S’poreans (self included) exemplified what many S’poreans liked about the PAP Old Guard: principled, meritocratic, technocratic, smart (academically and street-wise), no wayang, no pretensions and compassionate: not sneering, complacent, privileged, incompetent and self-serving snob. Even the PAP’s preferred candidate belonged to the Old Guard, even if he had a privileged background: in fact many of the Old Guard had privileged backgrounds, they juz didn’t behave like a certain sneerer. Tony Tan juz didn’t get my vote because he was the “preferred” candidate. But if it had been between him, TJS and TKL (ex-PAP too), I’d voted for Tony Tan.
The next candidate, TJS, had only 25% of the vote. This is in line with the hard core opposition vote that emerges in any constituency an opposition candidate appears, even a looney one.
What the internet has allowed, is to give amplification to the voices of the hard core opposition supporters. They were never silent but the exclusion of their voices from the constructive, nation-building local media meant that they could only communicate in a less than effective way most of the time to other die-hards and ordinary S’poreans.
Ordinary S’poreans now realise that these voices are not demon voices because like the hard core opposition voters, they too have grievances, doubts etc. They now know, they are not alone.
The power of the internet and the govt’s concern that it is losing the commanding heights of public communications are best illustrated by P Ravi’s reposting on Facebook about the availability of the masks: that the public were not going to get it despite repeated govt assurances to the contrary, and the govt’s heavy-handed reaction. This reposting was enough to get him accused of spreading misinformation.
P Ravi’s defence when the govt accused him spreading misinformation about the distribution of masks, was that he sharing with his Facebook friends (1000 over if you must know), giving the govt feedback, and seeking clarification from the govt: rather contradictory assertions. Why the govt didn’t ridicule these contradictions is beyond me. Instead, Yaacob, a civil servant and the constructive, nation-building media beat the drums to the tune of RAVII*, making him a hero and martyr to the hostiles on the internet and, in particular on social media. My posts on this
So nope, the desire to experiment when things are gd, isn’t unique to S’pore. Nor is the internet the cause of the unpopularity. Even when the PAP had 70ish % of the popular vote, the balance voted for the opposition.
And 35% of the population like the values of the PAP Old Guard, they juz don’t like the way the PAP has developed in the 1990s and noughties. All this means that those who want change cannot afford to be complacent esp as there is going to be a party that’s going to be gd for the Party i.e. the PAP.
*Recriminations, Accusations, Vilifications, Insinuations & Insults. Minister Shan talks of criticising ministers n the “right” way (E-Jay’s take). Well, what Yaacob and a civil servant did to Ravi, and what VivianB did to various people including the elderly poor doesn’t set gd examples for the public, do they?
No, not us. We are none of these, though we got many of the u/m conveniences, sort of.
Estonia (population 1.3m) is a world leader in technology. Estonian geeks developed the code behind Skype, Hotmail and Kazaa (a precursor of the Napster file-sharing software). In 2007 it became the first country to allow online voting in a general election. It has among the world’s zippiest broadband speeds and holds the record for start-ups per person. Its 1.3m citizens pay for parking spaces with their mobile phones and have their health records stored in the digital cloud. Filing an annual tax return online, as 95% of Estonians do, takes about five minutes. How did the smallest Baltic state develop such a strong tech culture?
a co-founder of Skype the president says Estonia’s success is not so much about ditching legacy technology as it is about shedding “legacy thinking”. Replicating a paper-based tax-filing procedure on a computer, for instance, is no good; having such forms pre-filled so that the taxpayer has only to check the calculations has made the system a success. Education is important, too: last year, in a public-private partnership, a programme called ProgeTiiger (“Programming Tiger”) was announced, to teach five-year-olds the basics of coding. “In the 80s every boy in high-school wanted to be a rock-star,” says Mr Hinrikus. “Now everybody in high-school wants to be an entrepreneur.” Mr Hinrikus is a co-founder of Skype.
Interestingly, some time back ST had a piece entitled “Generating bright ideas in S’pore”. It mentioned Google and Facebbok but not Skype. Wonder why?
Related link on why S’pore can only talk cock: http://wikileaks.org/cable/2007/02/07SINGAPORE394.html
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kMxT5YFMigo&feature=youtu.be is making the rounds on Facebook. It’s about the seven tua kee bloggers chosen by the constructive, nation-building ST as representative of all that is bad about the new media and the internet, thereby justifying Yaacob’s laws.
I’m a fan of the movie, and the film it was based on “The Seven Samurai”. Usually remakes are not as gd as the original, but the Magnificent 7 is an exception.
Well what can our 7 bloggers* learn from watching the movie?
For starters, this line “It seemed to be a good idea at the time”. This was said when the seven were discussing what to do next after being betrayed by the farmers they were defending. They had agreed to defend the farmers against bandits in return for food and housing, and the quote refers to that decision.
When Alex Au, P Ravi or any of the others next have a row with the authorities, they should remember this line and analyse what led to the row. Sometimes, based on their reactions to govt criticism or worse, I don’t think that they do reflection.
Something for bachelors Alex Tan (“like a son to Mrs Chiam”), Andrew Loh, Alex Au and Remy Choo to think about, substituting “blog” for “gun”: Don’t you ever say that again about your fathers, because they are not cowards. You think I am brave because I carry a gun; well, your fathers are much braver because they carry responsibility, for you, your brothers, your sisters, and your mothers. And this responsibility is like a big rock that weighs a ton. It bends and it twists them until finally it buries them under the ground. And there’s nobody says they have to do this. They do it because they love you, and because they want to. I have never had this kind of courage. Running a farm, working like a mule every day with no guarantee anything will ever come of it. This is bravery. That’s why I never even started anything like that… that’s why I never will.
Likewise, P Ravi whose motto is “Live like a Legend”, and Richard Wan might want to think of putting the material well-being and peace of mind of their families first, rather than making fighting for “truth and justice” a priority. They (truth and justice) may be the American way (Ravi’s a fan of Superman) or the way of Confucius (Richard’s a scholar and from a prominent Chinese school when it still had not been bastardised), but never have been part of the system here from the time Raffles founded S’pore.
Next, our bloggers should always be thinking of the odds they are facing:
Chris: There’s a job for six men, watching over a village, south of the border.
O’Reilly: How big’s the opposition?
Chris: Thirty guns.
O’Reilly: I admire your notion of fair odds, mister.
Harry Luck: The odds are too high.
Chris: Much too high.
Harry Luck: Then we go?
Chris: No; we lower the odds.
Then there is the likelihood of betrayal by fellow S’poreans. After chasing away the bandits, the heroes were betrayed to the bandits by the farmers, though in the end the farmers joined in the fight against the bandits when the seven returned to the village determined to rid the village of the bandits despite the farmers choosing to let the bandits in. Got to to be some lesson there: Saving S’poreans from themselves against their will?
Finally three more quotes:
— Here’s something that the bandit chief said that PM should think about–
Generosity… that was my first mistake. I leave these people a little bit extra, and then they hire these men to make trouble. It shows you, sooner or later, you must answer for every good deed.
I’m sure many netizens would say that PM’s dad never made that mistake.
— You must excuse them. They are farmers here. They are afraid of everyone and everything. They are afraid of rain and no rain. The summer may be too hot, the winter too cold.
Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Even if there are no farmers in S’pore.
— If God did not want them sheared, He would not have made them sheep.
Could be the PAP about S’poreans. In the movie, it was the bandit chief talking about the farmers.
*I would omit Alex Tan and that New Nation chap from my list of S’pore’s seven top bloggers. Alex Tan claims he doesn’t blog much nowadays and I doubt he had much influence when he was mouthing expletives and doing stunts. The New Nation is not even funny. Uncle Leong and E-Jay are part of the Magnificent Seven: that fight like 700.
But then I suspect that one criteria of getting on ST’s list is that the bloggers (or their publications) that ST featured must have had some notoriety or run in with the authorities. Uncle Leong and E-Jay, for all their influence, have kept their noses clean. Nothing to slime them with, unlike the seven featured. In fact, I suspect that’s why Alex featured. He, and his publications, give bloggers a bad name. And the NN guy was featured to show how pretentious bloggers can be.
Regular readers will know that in a piece about the “right politics” that the PAP plays:.
Penultimately, in case anyone is wondering, I don’t think it was “dirty” politics … for Yaacob to rough up P* Ravi. Those who live by the sword like … P Ravi must accept that they can kanna cut or die too. Fair is fair. Cannot expect to use keyboard or mouth to attack others, and not not expect others to respond. And they should remember that bullies in real life often don’t back off but instead respond disproportionately.
These were gd “clean” politics.
Recently, I met someone in corporate communications who didn’t like what the govt is doing to P Ravi. He, as a social activist and a believer in human rights advocacy, disagreed that the govt’s response was proportionate, especially the forum letter that appeared after my above remarks. (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, why are you reading my blog?)
He said that after P Ravi had posted his comments on his Facebook wall, and the govt was alerted to it by worried S’poreans, it should have posted a reply to his reposting on his wall, setting out the facts, and asking him to correct or remove his posting. Putting its reply on a govt website was not the best response.He said he didn’t know about that response, until I told him about it. He had been going on about the unfairness of Ravi being singled out in parliament by a minister before I pointed out that the govt had issued a rebuttal on a govt website.
I think this gd-hearted kay poh, who incidentally wants convicted drug dealers treated humanely, has a very valid point on the govt not answering directly to Ravi’s comments (He reposted, so he owns the comments, so pls no “Reposting only” BS) on his Facebook wall.
This is something that should be included in Yaacob’s SOP on handling haze public communications: responding in a timely manner on the same platform as the query or allegation, not via another platform. In fact, this should be in the SOP on the handling of any query or allegation, whether well-intended, plain kay poh or malicious. Anyway, the intention is another issue that can and should be handled separately. It is of secondary importance.
Responding in a timely manner on the same platform as the query or allegation, not via another platform, is a very good way of coping with, “A lie can be halfway round the world before the truth has got its boots on.”, something any government or corporation is rightly paranoid about. Incidentally this remark was said in the late 60s, or in the 70s by James Callahan who was British PM in the late 70s: pre-internet age.
Now a lie can be round the world a hundred fold, before the truth has got its Christian Louboutinhigh heels on.
I hope that both the govt and P Ravi have learnt lessons from this balls-up and move on. Fortunately, no-one died and it turned out to be a Tweedledum and Tweedledee row:
Sadly I think the govt is planning to extract its “pound of flesh”. Hopefully, I’m wrong ’cause I know P Ravi personally. He is a decent, well meaning guy who means nobody any harm. I don’t think rumour-mongering was on his mind when he reposted the said comments.
Update on 17 December: I am wrong, as at time of writing, on the govt extracting its “pound of flesh”. May I continue to be wrong. Merry Christmas to all, PAPpies included.
And join the Church of Scientology. Or since apostasy* is punishable by death in Islam, he should sub-contract to the Church of Scientology. the govt’s attempts to make sure we get the “right” news from the web, so that we support the “right” party with the “right” politics; never mind if it has the “unright” policies, like preferring FTs to locals.
Here’s why he shold sub-contract to the Church : They’re kind of innovators in finding ways to censor the internet,” Dr Martin Poulter University of Bristol
Last month digital rights activists at the influential Electronic Frontiers Foundation (EFF) placed the Church of Scientology into their hall of shame over what it says were repeated acts against internet freedoms.
It was just the latest twist in the Church’s long-running feud with “negative” Scientology content online, one that has lasted almost two decades.
Back in May 1994, at a time when most major organisations were yet to figure out how exactly to deal with the relatively unknown power of the internet, the Church’s Elaine Siegel had a few ideas, outlined in a leaked email to “all Scientologists on the internet”.
“I would like to ask your assistance in getting each one of you to post positive messages on the internet (at least once a week, more if you like), about Scientology,” she wrote.
“If you imagine 40-50 Scientologists posting on the internet every few days, we’ll just run the SP’s [ex-members] right off the system.
“It will be quite simple, actually.”
But, perhaps not, because despite its attempts to control the flow of info on the net about the Church:
According to some measures, the Church is suffering from declining membership. Many who leave the Church are now more able to speak out – particularly with the help of blogs and social media, a threat that even the most intensive use of copyright laws struggles to touch.
“Founder L Ron Hubbard told them how to do everything in life,” reflects Dr Poulter from Wikipedia.
“But he didn’t leave any instructions on how to handle the internet.” The Hard Truths don’t. likewise, tell the PAPpies how to handle the internet.
Since there’s no manual on how to successfully control the flow of info on the web, maybe the govt should juz be pragmatic, and accept that it doesn’t have the power to restrict the flow of info on the net. Information on the net is like water.
And since I’m on Yaacob and the govt’s attempt to control the flow on the internet, here’s something on Yaacob’s law.
In his recent parliamentary comments,Yaacob Ibrahim, minister for Communications and Information, said he was “puzzled” by the Asia Internet Coalition’s statements*. The new licensing regime “has nothing to do with doing business in Singapore. It is about holding certain websites to a higher level of responsibility,” he said.
For someone who went to RI and Stamford, I can only hope that he is pretending to be “puzzled’. Because if he is really, really puzzled, it reflects badly on the calibre of RI boys who are cabinet ministers (I mean Hng Kiang is not exactly a shining example of the species).
It’s obvious why an industry body representing eBay Inc., Facebook Inc., Google Inc., Salesforce and Yahoo Inc is concerned**. Its members make money using information (i.e. news) in one form or other. For Google, Yahoo and Facebook, they make money via ads. For eBay it is via fees. Any possibility of information being restricted is worrying for these big companies, and for their govt, the US govt***, even if for the moment the penalties for breaking S’pore’s regulations are “peanuts”.
The other reason why these companies (and the US govt) are concerned is that S’pore is a “thought leader”, in mgt consultants’ speak, when it comes to making sure the media reports the “right” news (Witness its ranking in the press freedom index). It’s attempts to make sure the right news is told is worrying for global information companies because other countries might try to follow suit. Then problems may result. Say Indonesia has a similar regulation. Come another haze problem, Yahoo may have to obey S’pore and Indonesia in reporting the “right” information. And the countries may disagree on what is “right”. Whatever it does, Yahoo will upset someone.
*Apparently following the Way of Hard Truths doesn’t amount to conversion out of Islam, even though it involves deification of the Hard Truths.
**In an open letter published last month, the Asia Internet Coalition—an industry body representing eBay Inc., Facebook Inc., Google Inc., Salesforce and Yahoo Inc.—criticized the new rules as “onerous, regressive and untenable in practice,” arguing that they have “negatively impacted Singapore’s global image as an open and business-friendly country.”
“The current vague and broad terms in the regulation and implementation will hamper innovation and deter industry growth,” such as by placing a “financial risk” upon potential Internet start-ups, said the coalition, which lobbies for free and open Internet access. The new rules “could presage a more restrictive attitude to the Internet [and] set a precedent for more restrictive regimes around the region,” it added. http://blogs.wsj.com/searealtime/2013/07/08/singapore-defends-new-internet-rules/?mod=WSJBlog
Reminder:- A “Singapore news programme” is any programme (i.e, a programme is a production) containing any news, intelligence, report of occurrence, or any matter of public interest, about any social, economic, political, cultural, artistic, sporting, scientific or any other aspect of Singapore in any language, but does not include any programme produced by or on behalf of the Government.
***The US State Department issued a statement expressing its “deep concerns” about what it called a “new restrictive law” in Singapore for licensing news websites. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said, “We urge Singapore to ensure that freedom of expression is protected in accordance with its international obligations and commitments.”
“We are concerned… to see Singapore applying press restrictions to the online world.”
Here, I blogged on Tan Wah Piow’s call for cyber-activism: juz forward articles you like to friends and contacts.
Doesn’t achieve much leh: the following appeared recently in the letters page of the Economist:
* SIR – I was glad to see you address a common misconception regarding the protests over the past few years (“The digital demo”, June 29th). These protests have been touted as social-media revolutions, but the fact remains that the demonstrators have grabbed attention and brought about change because they went out and physically marched. Today’s youth often assumes that sending a tweet constitutes protest.
He is right about the physical efforts needed to get things changed in countries that are authoritarian or dictatorships. Not so easy as what the S’pore dissident says.
As S’poreans don’t do protests and marches, except with the PAP govt’s permission: and most only speak anon, the PAP should not be afraid of keyboard warriors, right? They can’t change anything.
Except that the generals in the PAP govt are paper generals. And our policemen have no experience of dealing with rioters. When was the last time, the riot squad was called out? Or the ISA* used against middle class kay pohs?.
One P* Ravi is both a keyboard warrior (Jedi rank, but got potential to be Jedi Master like Yoda), and a physical warrior (he works-out by pounding the pavements and climbing the stairs for the NSP, and buys masks from his own pocket for the needy), . He operates in both worlds. He is dangerous to paper generals. Maybe taz the real reason why he kanna marked? Not because he reposted an allegation that masks would not be distributed to the public, despite the govt saying this was being done. BTW, the masks were distributed, and the reposting didn’t result in riots or panic. Bit of
* On the ISA, read what this young S’porean (doing his NS (to defend among others this two-timing new citizen Raj and his NS avoiding son that will still be a PR FT) has to say about the ISA and his generation:
— until there was “intimidation” http://wisementalking.tumblr.com/post/50973572926/operation-spectrum-
**Philemon, not “Private”, “Politician”, “Political” or “Partisan”)
Ravi the do-gooder, NSP member and ex-TOC Indian Chief wrote on FB juz before the hols: If ST* feels that online voices are not representative of the majority, then they should just ‘unfriend’ some of these ‘voices’, and spend the time tracking what’s happening online, in the field, listening to the voice of the majority. I have had reporters from the mainstream media asking me for leads for stories. Leads which are not difficult to find (some of which you can find when you just google for it). The fact is, the voices online have made the jobs of the mainstream media journalists easier, to crowdsource ideas, and to get leads. So appreciate the ‘barking dogs’ will you?
Ravi should relax. The Commanches and other injuns, and cowboys own the internet. The PAPpies are under siege in internet equivalent of Fort Apache and the YPAP trolls only venture out under the cover of darkness and anonymity. If they venture out in the light, they will be wiped out juz as Custer’s men were wiped out by the Sioux and Cheyenne at the battle of Little Big Horn.
The challenge for social or political activists is bringing the material available online to the people who don’t go online often or at all. The ST article is aimed at these people, not netizens. The message to these offliners is, “Netizens are bad, lawless people: barbarians bent on destroying S’pore. Only the constructive, nation-building media, especially ST, and the PAP stand between a prosperous S’pore and them.”
Pushing online material into physical S’pore is something a political party can do effectively. Example: During the 2008 M’sian general election campaign, the Opposition were photocopying copes of M’siakini etc stuff and distributing it to the voters even in rural areas. I have been told they even SMSed articles. Though the mind boggles as how such stuff is SMSed.
I hope the NSP will put Ravi in a position where he can try out such ideas. But given the power balance in NSP, I doubt it very much. But that’s for another post
Thanks to Uncle Leong, we netizens know that the PAP’s latest statement on AIM is “[f]ull of holes”. Problem is: Do the offliners who rely on the local media know of Uncle Leong’s analysis? (BTW, he RI boy. So don’t see us RI boys no ak. Not all of us are Tan Kin Lian or Tan Jee Say.)
Bringing goodies such as Uncle Leong’s piece to the masses is the challenge, not fighting the PAP and the local media on the internet. We own the internet.
*A piece by an ST editor attacking netizens. It appeared the Saturday before Christmas. Gd riposte here.
So the NSP has not gone into hibernation. It is co-organising this seminar entitled “How to Survive the Perils of the Online World?” . Pretty impressive speakers: three lawyers (one an academic, while another is a former president of the Law Soc and former DPP) and Cherian George. New NSP member, Ravi Philemon, ex-TOC chief editor, blogger, do-gooder and social activist is moderating. It should be an interesting, entertaining and educational do. Do try to attend, but make sure you park carefully*.
Traditionally the NSP (referred to by trolls as the “No Substance Party”) falls asleep after a GE, to waken just before the next GE. It happened after 1996 and even after 2001, when Steve Chia became a NCMP. He, and the NSP, didn’t build on that position for the 2006 GE. After the 2006 GE, it went into hibernation to be roused in 2008 by one Goh Meng Seng, who had joined NSP from the WP.
After the 2011 GE, GMS resigned from the NSP (a troll said he is a serial resigner from parties after GEs, having resigned from WP after the 2006 GE: if he set-up his own party, he would quit it after losing a GE.).
The expectation was that the party would go into hibernation what with internal disputes earlier this year.
Well the party has proven us sceptics wrong. It is walking the ground regularly in Tampines GRC. I hear Nicole Seah is doing something in Marine Parade GRC, Hazel and hubbie are wading in the North Western marshes and recreational farms, and Jeannette Chong is cycling (though there are trolls saying she is doing so to lose weight) in Mountbatten.
As befits a party with two scholars (Hazel and hubbie) and a lawyer (Jeannette), NSP is planning to do a policy paper entitled: “My Singapore: Identity, Population and Manpowe”’. To help it write the paper, is doing a survey. The survey format is undergrad stuff but it shows NSP is trying to solicit people’s opinion, not hectoring while ignoring them (PAP). Nor ignoring them, unlike WP.
It holds regular legal clinics to advise S’poreans. After Alex Au’s row with AG on his comments on a legal judgement, I had suggested to a NSP member I knew, and on Ms Chong’s FB wall, that maybe it should use one of its legal clinics to advise netizens on how to avoid upsetting the AG. It would have the additional advantage of getting some PR and goodwill from netizens. So maybe, I should get a bit of credit for this Saturday’s seminar? But easy to propose, organising isn’t so easy.
But more needs to be done. NSP’s website is pretty basic (Rumour is that GMS designed it). As at
time of writing 5th November, it didn’t even advertise “How to Survive the Perils of the Online World?” on its website: this appeared on 6 November. But it is advertising a 2011 November event, I kid you not. So its online presence is even less than that of the WP or SPP, and miles behind that of the SDP.
The good thing is that with such a low starting point, there is no further downside. Can’t get any worse.
My suggestion to NSP is to anoint Ravi as online Czar, responsible for online strategy and delivery. He did a gd job at TOC, when he was editing the contents: claiming Han Seng Tong’s scalp, getting minister Shan say nasty things about TOC, and making KennethJ angry (Ravi didn’t publish his rants). Against that, Mrs Chiam has said nice things about TOC under Ravi’s editorship.
To conclude, NSP is shedding its “No Substance Party” image and the hibernation habit between GEs. But it has a long way to go in building its cred among voters. Giving Ravi the online portfolio will help built cred online. But NSP should make sure Ravi doesn’t skive when it comes to walking the ground: not because he needs to shed kilos, not juz pounds (he does) but boots on the ground are needed to win a seat (Juz ask auntie Sylvia, and he-man Steve Chia). Every member must do the walking or cycling.
*LTA might not be happy that Ravi is kicking up a big fuss over how LTA exercises its rules when an MP intervenes. He has also alleged that an MP had parked illegally.
I must say the Archbishop has no brains. Otherwise why would he write the original letter. None of church’s biz who the state locks up without trial. And there is the back story of liberation theology and the 1987 “Marxists”. Why get involved? What was he thinking or not thinking? Was he on a high after communion, what with the wine and incense?
Or was he misled into signing the letter? Some liberation theology, Marxist subversive friend of Function 8 and the SDP could have slipped the letter in among other letters to be signed. If so church shld root out the subversive. Call in ISD if nec. Even so shows Archie was careless. And a bad judge of character.
If anyone doesn’t know what I’m talking about, read this summary: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1227305/1/.html
And waz this other rubbish Archie?
[T]he Archbishop said his letter to the group was intended as a private communication.
He added if the the group was going to publicise it at a political event – something which he did not intend – then they should have asked for permission first.
The Archbishop said they did not do so.
So why withdraw the letter if it was private and could not be released? [B]ecause the contents did not accurately reflect his views.
So why so careless or stupid? Vatican should investigate his suitability to be the leader of S’pore Catholics.
But God is great, everyone else involved in F8Gate goofed.
Home Team did Archie no favours with its letter attacking Function 8. Sit down and shut up. [Update after publication: Gd link on whty it shld not have said anything http://www.tremeritus.com/2012/09/23/mha-walks-into-a-minefield/]
And if it was unhappy with the original letter, juz get MFA to complain to the Vatican. Knowing the Pope’s views on liberation theology, Archie would have been beaten up in-house. No need for ISD to intimidate him, as alleged.
So why have tea and lunch with him and tax-payers’ expense?
Function 8 didn’t do itself any favours with its various remarks. Dignified silence would have served it better: at the very least shown up Archie’s unsuitability to be a religious leader. All respectable S’poreans (self especially) should avoid it. Must be Dr Chee’s and SDP’s evil spirits finding a new home after he and SDP exorcised themselves.
And Maruah, “civil society” is more than Function 8, Alex Au and friends.
And I suppose Maruah, Alex Au etc will have no issues with any religious leader if said religious leader comes out in support of the govt’s immigration policy, or its sexual education policy or the view that adults must be married before breeding for S’pore. Careful for what you wish.
Finally where being an internet activist can get one arrested and beaten up (see below) So give PM, DPM Teo, ISD and Home Team a break, Alex Au, Function 8, Maruah, TOC, and other “subversives”. Wonder why our constructive, nation-building media doesn’t highlight what real repression is all abt?
ISD sleeping on the job in vetting local media appointments, and ferreting out subversives?. I mean hard to believe MediaCorp and CNA could be so cack-handed in choosing panelists. Conclusion: trying to sabo NatCon by deliberately choosing so many PAPpies and friends?
And if you don’t think this is funny enough, read this http://newnation.sg/2012/09/ntuc-fairprice-retracts-love-letters-sold-to-function-8/.
With the effectiveness of the mainstream opposition hit badly by the repression and by its own lack of unity, many young Belarusians have turned to internet activism. The regime clearly wants to nip this in the bud as quickly as possible. In August several pages on social networking sites were shut down, their administrators arrested and beaten. Raman Pratasevich, who at 17 has already seen the inside of several prison cells, beamingly says the page he runs, Stop Luka, is currently live again. When I met him on Independence Square, the scene of the 2010 protest, four plain-clothes police officers immediately appeared.
This time, they merely took down our names and let us carry on the interview. But earlier that day, several journalists had been detained and roughed-up alongside the activists they were filming. Their footage was deleted. The same day a number of foreign youth activists from the International Federation of Liberal Youth were detained and told to leave the country on the grounds that they had violated their visa rules. Some OSCE election observers have been denied visas. It seems in the run-up to polling day, the regime is turning up the heat, just to be sure.
Extract from Economist blog
That is what Mr Moncayo did when, at the tender age of 23, he devised a grand plan to forge a whole new trading relationship between Latin America and China
Despite knowing very little about manufacturing and unable to speak a Chinese language, he decided to build a career negotiating and supervising deals between firms in his native Latin America and Chinese suppliers. It was an obvious gap in the market.
“We were the first ones to really connect these two regions,” he says.
Just eight years later, Mr Moncayo is the chief executive of Asiam Business Group, handling orders from Asia worth $35m (£22m) per year, mainly on behalf of Latin American fashion houses.
S’pore wants to be some kind of Silicon …. But
—Google provides office space and assistance to new technology companies in London’s “Silicon Roundabout”.
— NY’s hopeful answer to Silicon Valley. Actually it is trying to centralise activities that are happening in the city hopping to get more bang for the buck.
Despite all the hype from A*STAR, EDB etc, we are a IP hub only because govmin willing to punish those who break IP, not because of creative people. We arrest them for vandalism etc.
Oh and we got accident-prone, dysfunctional Yahoo!. A lot of its Asian operations are located here.
Our Silicion ambitions going the way of M’sia’s Cyberjaya?
American gal sets up internet biz in Cambodia: she sell hair (to be more accurate “hair extensions”) globally http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2012/05/28/in-cambodia-a-start-up-uses-the-internet-to-sell-hair/
Software dev is big biz in Vietnam
“Ten years ago, you could count the number of IT companies using your fingers,” he says.
Now there are more than 750 software companies employing some 35,000 people. Among them, 150 are outsourcing firms.
Industry sources suggest that Vietnam is currently among the top five outsourcing destinations in Asia.
Vietnamese companies are manufacturing software and games for foreign companies, and are starting to export mobile phone apps overseas.
A young population and cheap labour costs are two major advantages that many start-ups have been tapping. The government in Vietnam has also been very encouraging, seeing information technology as beneficial for the country’s economy.
Charles Speyer, co-founder of Glass Egg Digital Media, a console game art outsourcing company, says the environment has been “very friendly for software companies”.
“We received our licence after less than a week,” he says.
“At Glass Egg we have always had to train our 3D artists, but there are good coders coming straight out of school in Vietnam.”
However Mr Speyer warns that although there is a lot of potential, the innovation industry in Vietnam will take some time to develop because of the inadequate education system.
“The education system is not geared towards creating innovators and that does not seem to be changing any time soon under the current government guidelines.”
Based on the remarks of the PM and the two DPMs the last few days, I think Yaacob would find S’poreans receptive to a Ministerial CoC (Code of Conduct) on the telling of jokes in bad taste.
I ranted earlier on DPM Teo’s joke on more openness and passing the burden of integrating FTs to us S’poreans who never asked for them in the first place.
Well that was the start of the bad-joke telling session.
We then had Tharman telling us that although inflation rose by about 5.2% (“a high figure” said he) in March 2012, this did not mean that the average Singaporean will feel this “high inflation” because more than half of the headline inflation rate of 5.2% came from higher COEs for cars and the effect of higher market rent on houses. The vast majority of Singaporeans who already own their homes and are not buying new cars would not feel the effects of these sharp increases. And the increase in prices of daily necessities and essential services such as food and clothing have actually been much more moderate at 3% or lower.
Well he got well and truly beaten up for this tasteless joke because among other things, high COE prices affect those who need to buy vans and lorries to transport goods. Their costs go up and guess who pays?
And this isn’t the first time he tried to tell bad jokes. Remember the one about someone earning less than a $1000 a month being able to afford to a 30-yr HDB mortgage, or the one that low-income Singaporeans may be able to receive between $3.97 to $5.10 in government benefits for every dollar paid in taxes over a life time. We found out that it all depends on the assumptions made, and anyway in the case of benefits, much of it was paid into the CPF account, while a recipient had to pay his taxes upfront in cash. What abt the time value of the money, minister?
Then the PM joined in. He told the joke about the need for wages to be driven by higher productivity. I mean how could productivity go up with 80,000 immigrants a year being imported to keep wages down? Or even the planned only 25,000?
And what abt this spotted by Donaldson Tan and reported on his FB page, “MBS raised demand for unskilled labour in the hospitality sector, resulting in wage growth for everyone in the hospitality sector while Labour Chief asserted that wage growth must be backed by productivity gain. There is no productivity gain in the PM’s example.”?
The PM also said, “Singaporeans will always be our priority”: “Whether it was adjusting the supply of foreign workers or the pursuit of economic growth, he said the Government seeks to maximise the advantages for its citizens, and to provide them with jobs and a share of the nation’s success.” (ST report)
Huh? Hey who waz it who allowed in 80,000 FTs a year to keep wages down, without expanding the public housing and transport infrastructure?
And before I forget his office said that only “good quality” people are allowed to immigrate? What abt the hooker-looking, violent, cheating, unrepentent shop assistant, and the hawkers that became PRs? Not exactly “good quality” migrants are they? Honest mistakes?
Now this was one bad joke too far.
Yaacob’s Code of Conduct for the internet is not needed because S’pore has the penal code and laws on sedition, contempt of court, criminal and civil defamation and incitement to religious hatred that can be used to
repress curb the excesses of netizens like the unemployed chap behind “Fabrications abt the PAP”.
But let’s trade. What about a CoC for ministers to get ministers to stop telling cock jokes, in exchange for a CoC in which bloggers become less anti the governing PAP?
(Or “Doc’s cure Part I: a purgative)
PAP’s Heaven that is. Hell to us netizens. OK, let’s not exaggerate, more like Purgatory.
Sorry, Back to the headline. There are three steps that Yaacob wants taken to tame “cowboy towns”:
Step 1: “The Internet community creates a code of conduct for responsible online behaviour”
Step 2: “Citizens set up websites that offer constructive viewpoint” i.e. he said that the best way to go is to encourage other sites to emerge, “that can continue to offer constructive ideas and useful suggestions”.
Step 3: “Major media cos could help set the right tone online”
Step 1 has been well covered by netizens since he articulated it many moons ago. All I will add to the noise is this analysis
— If the government tries to regulate us bloggers, it’ll do more harm than good, for the government itself, the PAP and for S’pore. The government and PAP are no good in designing social systems: even the CCP in China acknowledges it cannot be the only social architect, it is only one of the players, albeit the one that can throw other players into jail. The PAP government has a further problem given government’s desire for a knowledge-based economy, but with knowledge and the economy increasingly dependent on access and the use of the internet, it can no longer control the information S’poreans get. The internet and, in particular, social media have created a level of transparency never ever seen before in S’pore. Even taking into account the lack of publicly available government data, people can still research complicated issues with a few clicks of a mouse. The PAP government can no longer control the agenda or the framework within which discussions take place.
Even manufacturing is becoming social: read the Economist, the magazine where the government got its ideas for COEs, and CBD charges, among other “screw the poor” ideas.
— In the context of the other two steps, it is totally irrelevant. It has nothing to do with getting citizens to set up websites “that offer constructive viewpoints” or” with the local media helping readers to “separate the wheat from the chaff”.
— And even after asserting that the internet should grow as a platform for “serious discussion”, Dr Yaacob said a site cannot be stopped “just because we disagree with it”. There’s “nothing wrong” with “more sites available that offer alternative views, but as long as they are constructive … based on proper analysis”.
On Step 2, “Citizens set up websites that offer constructive viewpoint”, my first tot was, “Err whatever happened to FTs, that ministers so treasure? They don’t do “constructive” websites? Or are they banned from doing “constructive websites” but allowed to do “unconstructive” websites (citizens are discouraged from doing these sites)? Or are FTs banned totally from setting up websites on S’pore? Or all websites?”. If the last “wah lan” what kind of FTs do we want? Only goodie-two shoes (as defined by the PAP) like “No NS for me” from Msian-born Puthu or “Food is gd is M’sia” from Msian-born Ms Foo”. Incidentally, both became PAP MPs.
And he is talking rubbish, “If there are no good online sites or platforms that offer good views, people will naturally gravitate toward those that are popular and available.” Well people will always gravitate to sites that support their point of view. Ask the watchers of Fox TV in the US. And to “yellow culture” websites that promote decadent lifestyles.
But my biggest grouse with him on Step 2, is that what are “good” and “constructive” websites with “proper analysis” to enable “serious discussion” and “useful ideas”, are defined by the PAP government. It’s the usual “setting the agenda”, framing the issue game that the government is always playing.
And it’s clear that by saying the local media can help readers to “separate the wheat from the chaff … our major companies, which have an established presence, can set the right tone online as well, with good practices of information sharing and moderation on the various online platforms”, his definitions of “good”, “constructive”, “proper analysis”, “useful ideas” and “serious discussion” are the same definitions used by the PAP government to describe its ideal mainstream media, and the local media when it describes itself. He only left out “nation-building”*.
As this post is getting too long, I leave for next week examples of what I speculate are the practices he wants our “citizen”, “constructive” websites to learn from the local media: publishing misleading photos or rewriting letters-to-the-editor to misrepresent the views of the writers?
For now, I’ll leave you with some light relief, “[T]o disagree with the Government is not a crime, but let’s put it on a rational objective footing. The Government has never shied away from that and that is something we look forward to, so that the Internet community can add to the discourse.” Wonder if the late JBK, Dr Chee or TOC would agree?
* Actually he didn’t The Jakarta Post reported that he “noted that Singapore’s media model is one based on forging consensus and facilitating nation-building, in which social cohesion is preserved while empowering people to make informed decisions as a society.”
Below are relevant extracts from a BBC Online article on how the Chinese state-controlled media analyse the “problems” the internet pose to society’s stability.
A commentary in Shanghai Morning Post insists that the introduction of “real name” rules for online forums and micro-blogging sites is the “cure” to the problem*, citing similar examples from Western countries.
A second editorial in the Southern Metropolis Daily says it is a shared responsibility of the public and the government to boycott the spread of rumours, while a commentary in the People’s Daily claims in its headline that “tolerating rumours is not a quality of democracy”.
The Global Times’ bilingual editorial also take the chance to lash out at the power of the internet.
“The perception projected by internet opinions is quite far from the real situation. For example, online opinion holds that grassroots livelihoods are a mess in China,” says the editorial.
“In addition, it states that reform has come to a standstill and public anger has boiled over to the extent that China could descend into chaos any time.”
*Reminder: Tan Kin Lian, the People’s Voice, who lost his deposit in last year’s presedential candidate advocates similar rules here on posting on the internet.
I think that District Judge Low Wee Pin got it absolutely right when he found Gary Yue Mun Yew guilty of two offences involving the incitement of violence via the internet but rejected the prosecutions call for a prison sentence. He fined him $6,000 for uploading a video clip and another $2,500 for posting a doctored photograph. On each count, the sentence could be up to five years’ jail or a fine, or both.
During sentencing, District Judge Low Wee Ping made it clear that the charges against Yue were based on the acts of posting electronic documents that contained incitement to violence. This, the judge stressed, was very different from the act of inciting violence (my emphasis).
The judge also said that the YouTube video and Yue’s comment (details below) were “without doubt, an incitement to political assassination of persons on the grand-stand” on National Day. But he ruled that Yue had no intent to incite violence (again my emphasis), saying Yue was “immature” and “attention-seeking”.
What the prosecution and judgement show is that the internet is not “injun territory” or Commancheria* or a lawless cowboy town, where laws don’t apply and criminals can escape detection via anonymity. But at the same time, the judge shows that commiting crimes on the internet do not mean that the ordinary rules of justice are thrown out in order to “frighten the chickens by killing brutally a monkey”.
Three cheers for this judge. Lawyers, of the do-good kind like Siow Kum Hong and Super Yadav, if it’s not illegal, offer to buy him a cuppa if you run into him. Send the bill to me, if he accepts. I believe do-good lawyers don’t earn much.
Gary Yue Mun Yew posted a video clip depicting the assassination of former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat on the Facebook page of socio-political website Temasek Review at about 3pm on Aug 9, 2010.
Along with the video, Yue wrote the comment: “We should re-enact a live version of this on our own grand-stand during our national’s (sic) parade!!!!!”
… was also found guilty of posting a photograph on his Facebook profile in late July or early August 2010, which depicted Vietnamese General Nguyen Ngoc Loan executing a Vietcong prisoner.
The face of Singapore’s former Deputy Prime Minister and Home Affairs Minister Wong Kan Seng was superimposed on the image of the prisoner.
The People’s Action Party logo was also displayed on the prisoner’s chest.
*In the 18th and 19th centuries, homeland of the Comanches (“Lords of the South Plains”). The Comanches traded with the Spanish, and later the Mexican and Texan lands adjacent to Comancheria, while other bands raided these territories, stealing horses, mules, cattle and maize, rather than exchange buffalo meat and hides for these items like the “good” Comanches. These bands complimented one another and gave the Comanches the upper hand over the Spanish, Mexicans and Texans, who didn’t know how to cope with the subtleties of the ”savages”.
I’m sure many netizens are thinking that the willingness of the police to reveal their investigations into an internet prostitution ring; and the publicity given in the local media to the former school principal, and other professional people who are alleged to use prostitutes is meant to sabo the WP, Yaw and indirectly, the Opposition*.
Here is a more chillingly tot.
As more names come out, many more ordinary S’poreans will realise that the internet is not a “cowboy” town or injun territory where one can get away with anything. It is a place where if the authorities are determined, they can identify users.
Netizens got worked up over the possibility of S’pore imposing stricter rules on the internet (shumething which the US tried, and failed), but which India succeeded in doing. Instead, the government is using the indirect approach. An approch which preys on the fear that many S’poreans have that they will be “fixed” if they are known to be critical of the government or PAP?
What next? A minister suing someone for defamatory comments made on the internet by the latter, comments he tot was “safe” because his identity was “hidden”? You heard it here first.
Finally, netizens should be happy that one Tan Kin Lian never became president. He is an advocate of posters and bloggers registering their monikers using their real names. China has introduced something along similar lines.
*I’m surprised the SDP has not come up with a rant on this. But then the SDP is rumoured to be as puritanical as the PAP, unlike the WP where sexual acts are accepted as normal, even, it seems, adultery between party members. Maybe, the WP should brand itself as, “The Sexy Party”. Juz joking.
On the first page of Facebook’s prospectus, it puts the number of its “monthly active users” at 845 million people. It reports the “daily active users” as 483 million people.
Err: According to the company, a user is considered active if he or she “took an action to share content or activity with his or her Facebook friends or connections via a third-party Web site that is integrated with Facebook.”
In other words, every time you press the “Like” button on NFL.com, for example, you’re an “active user” of Facebook. Perhaps you share a Twitter message on your Facebook account? That would make you an active Facebook user, too. Have you ever shared music on Spotify with a friend? You’re an active Facebook user. If you’ve logged into Huffington Post using your Facebook account and left a comment on the site — and your comment was automatically shared on Facebook — you, too, are an “active user” even though you’ve never actually spent any time on facebook.com.
Read more here
David Choe, who first spray-painted the walls of Facebook HQ in 2005, accepted shares in payment for his work.
Now the site is planning to float on the stock market, its thought his share could be worth around $200m (£126m).
Writing on his blog, Choe said he was the “highest paid decorator alive”.
Although he had initially thought the idea of the social network was “ridiculous and pointless”, the artist decided to take the stock option instead of cash “in the thousands of dollars” according to the New York Times.
‘Tis all a Chequer-board of Nights and Days
Where Destiny with Men for Pieces plays:
Hither and thither moves, and mates, and slays,
And one by one back in the Closet lays.”
“Let what will be, be.”
‘Tis labor lost thus to all doors to crawl,
Take thy good fortune, and thy bad withal;
Know for a surety each must play his game,
As from heaven’s dice-box fate’s dice chance to fall.”
Someone not fated to be wealthy
Regularly, the government tells us it wants S’pore to a leading player in Web 2.0. Funding is supposedly there for technopreneurs (Remember this term from the dotcom days?) . And we know that the infrastructure of cables, modems and servers are being upgraded all the time.
But the government seems to forget that new media and social networks are part of Web 2.0.
Nothing illustrates this better than an article , early last week in Today, on the governing PAP’s online initiatives. What I found interesting were the comments of two PAP MPs which, incidentally, should reinforce prejudices about the PAP. But here the focus is on what their words showed S’poreans about the PAP’s thinking on Web 2.0.
We are always told that PAP MPs are allowed to think for themselves, and that they are not programmed to obey orders. Well Moulmein-Kallang GRC MP Edwin Tong implicitly said this is not true, at least as far as the Internet is concerned. He said “Not more than half a year ago, the PAP thought that this was noise – it was not relevant and this was a small proportion of people. I think that has changed. And that viewpoint change is very important to me because that means it’s a recognition that you can look into what are on the blogs and websites to get a sense of what the ground sentiment is.”
Wow, MPs were only recently given permission to use the Internet to get a feel of “ground sentiment”. So they are not allowed to think for themselves unless permission is given? In the world of Web 2.0
And we also learn that instant and unwelcome feedback is not welcomed by the PAP. But these are part of (and, part of, the attraction) of the world of Web 2.0.
Next, Chua Chu Kang GRC MP Zaqy Mohamad (he is on PAP committee tasked to tame the Internet) told us how slow the PAP was when it comes to using Web 2.0 platforms, “The first few years were about the PAP sensing* the platforms and understanding how to use it. Now it’s really (about) how to use these platforms for political mileage and political advantage.”
Huh? Obama was using new media and social networks in 2008, three years ago and here is the PAP only now using “these platforms for political mileage and political advantage”. Waz the point of getting S’pore all wired up and connected?
The use of “sensing” is interesting. It conveys two different mental pictures
— a blind man feeling an object to discern its shape and feel; and
— a dog sniffing an object to try to identify it. Remember dogs have bad eyesight.
Both images also convey the sense of bewilderment to the sniffer if the object is shumething that the blind man or dog have never come across before, and have nothing in the memories that they can relate the object to.
Not good ways to explain the PAP’s initial attitude towards Web 2.0 platforms. It also conveys the sense that the PAP leaders are not rational when thinking of Web 2.0.
All of which reminds me of what Thomson Reuters’ chief technology officer Andrew Jordan told the BBC last week: I used to be the CIO (chief information officer) of a business called Complinet which was an information business to the compliance industry …
The chief compliance officer sat through the demonstration for 45 minutes and said: “I understand exactly what you just said to me, but we’re probably two years away from anyone having any understanding of how valuable that is.”
They’d just come to grips with the idea that things were computerised let alone the idea that they need to collaborate using technology.
But the PAP did get one thing right. Tin Pei Ling was meant to be the PAP’s celebrity and poster material gal for the age of new media and social networks. Unfortunately for the PAP and herself, she
— didn’t have a clue about Facebook privacy; and
— employed “fat fingered” Denise He as her website administrator.
What a pair of clueless airheads when it came to knowledge of new media and social networks. Well, at least, Ms Tin no longer features in the PAP’s plans for engaging the new media and social networks.
Coming back to the government’s Web 2.0 ambitions, I think it is all about creating apps and games. Fair enogh. But can these be created if the environment and attitude is all wrong? Can dolphins thrive in a concentration camp where they are used to teach conservation to the kiddies?
(Note: In Westerns, the Comancherios were the bad guys who sell guns and whisky to the Comanches, “Lords of the South Plains” and other “lesser” Indians of the North American Southern Great Plains*.)
Last Thurday, I analysed how the NSP could be perceived given that three active actors in the “Jason Neo” and “Donaldson” cases were NSP supporters.
Here the focus is on counterfactuals. What if Neo had been an opposition party “volunteer” while Firdaus, the chap who exposed him, was a Young PaPpie or “volunteer”; Abdul Salim a PAP member; and Amran Junid (the person who complained about Donaldson) a PAP supporter?
– netizens have focused not on Jason Neo and Donaldson, but on the complainants and their perceived motives; and
– the local MSM be so laid-back in reporting the“Jason Neo” and “Donaldson” incidents?
Why were netizens so “easy” on Firdaus who spread the photo? The misdeed had been pointed in March 2011 by Neo’s Facebook’s “friends”. He explained that it was not meant to be taken seriously, and apologised. But he did not remove the post which he should have done. As none of them thought to advise, suggest or demand that he remove the post, I suspect, he tot he had done enough to “purge” himself, not that this excuses him.
But no-one it seems has “condemned” Firdaus for spreading the story even after Neo had apologised and taken the photo down
Nor has anyone except http://piaroh.wordpress.com/2011/11/23/bababa/ and me (in a round about way) questioned his motives. Was he (and others) trying to “fix” the YPAP, the PAP and the government, by associating them with Neo and his caption? A complainant, Abdul Salim, was a NSP member according to TOC; and Firdaus, remember, was a “volunteer” at NSP according to Yahoo!.
But what if Firdaus was a known YPAP member and Jason Neo was known as a NSP “volunteer”. Would the story have attracted so much interest on the Internet?
I’m sure that many netizens would have dismissed his actions as a Young PAP plot to discredit the NSP, the other opposition parties, the new media and us netizens, especially since a PAP member, Abdul Salim, made a complaint to the police . They would defend Neo, pointing out that he had apologised twice, the first time in March 2011 when his Facebook friends “scolded” him, and had taken down the photo after Firdaus complained to him. But still Firdaus “poured kerosene over the fire” by spreading the photo over the Internet. If anyone should be charged for sedition, it should be Firdaus the Young PaPpie, not Neo the NSP “volunteer”, I’m sure, netizens would say in this parallel world.
(As it is, someone posted on TOC, “This saga is pre-planned by PAP so they can used this excuse to formalise new laws to control the cyberspace to restrict ppl’s freedom of speech.”)
Can we therefore be surprised that the government and PAP view the Internet as Comanche territory (many of the real cowboy towns were in Comanche territory or Comancheria) and netizens as Comancheros?
But the government and PAP should realise there is a reason (or is it an excuse?) why we netizens tend to be so sceptical or cynical of them.
Would the local MSM’s coverage of this incident and that of the Donaldson case have been so low-key as to be almost non-existent, if Firdaus had been a Young PaPpie, and Neo the NSP “volunteer”? I think most readers would agree with me we would then have had story after story covering every angle. Especially since Abdul Salim was a PAP member, and Amran Junid was a PAP supporter (Remember we are in a parallel world) who exposed Donaldson.
We netizens would be guillty of sedition, irresponsibility, racism maybe even sodomy and pimping: by association.
The local MSM editorials and commentaries would be calling for more than a code of conduct. They would call for cyber laws to punish the likes of Neo and Donaldson.
Can the government, PAP and the local, constructive, nation- building media be surprised that more and more S’poreans are turning to new media for their news and analysis of local current affairs?
And can they blame bloggers and other Commancheros for trying to put some balance on the news and analysis S’poreans get, by putting more emphasis on what the Opposition and other ignored (by the government, PAP and local MSM) voices say. Why not give more space (plenty more) in the local MSM to “other” voices and see if more friendly injuns appear in Comancheria? (Remember the US cavalry relied on non hostile Indian scouts to track and locate the Comanches and other hostile Indians.) If no non hostile Injuns appear,, the PAP and government can revert to the status quo.
*The truth is more complex. The word “Comancheros” was the name gven to people in New Mexico who traded with the Comanches, the dominant tribe (think PAP and you get an idea of how dominant the Comanches were) of the Southern Great Plains of North America. They traded guns, ammunition, tools, cloth, flour, tobacco, and bread for hides, livestock and slaves from the Comanches. As the Comancheros may not have had sufficient access to modern rifles and ammunition, there is scholarly disagreement about how much they traded these to the Comanches. They were funded in part by US army officers based in New Mexico.
Or why Groupn may never IPO. Its founders should have taken Google’s US$6bn, and ran.
See how much Apple screws its suppliers, manfacturers
In selling MySpace for US$35m, six years after buying it for US$580m, Rupert Murdoch admitted that he got it wrong. FaceBook rules the social media for now. Six yrs ago, he was hailed as a genius.
I went to graduate school here in Silicon Valley at Stanford. It’s renowned for churning out a lot of interesting companies. My first office mates were the founders of Yahoo, and I distinctly remember telling them to stop wasting their time and focus on their school work before they went off and started that.
And then not learning from my mistake, I then went on to share the hallway with the founders of Google and had a pretty similar conversation with them.
VMware CTO talks to BBC.
Just a few months ago, an investment led by Goldman Sachs valued the social network at $50bn. Now, a group of analysts at an investment bank has looked at how the business is growing and come up with something 50% higher.
Source: Michael Fertik, Herb Tabin and Craig Agranoff.
There’s gold at the end of the rainbow and we’ve doing gd in the meantime. At least most of us are.
Latest VC trend is to throw money at the likes of us.
Gd year of the rabbit.
Not exactly. It’s abt me and one of his co’s, Nuffnang. I heard a Cheo pontificating on BBC on Nuffnang (he was founder and CEO) , which spotted the chance to put advertising in blank spaces on online blogs.
Anyway, make up yr mind abt him based on my experiences with Nuffnang.
On 21 December 2010 I emailed Nuffnang. I had some queries on whether their ad services could help me and them make money. I got this response:
Our office is closed from 6 December till 10 December for team building trip and we’ll have no access to the Internet. As such, we’ll not be able to respond to your ticket immediately.
However, rest assured that all tickets submitted will be responded to latest by 13 December.
We apologize for any inconvenience caused. Thank you.
Your support ticket has been created and sucessfully dispatched to the Blogger Enquiries/Suggestions department. Your ticket information is as follows:
Hi, note today is 21 Dec.
Hit the booze early?
As it was the hols, I promptly forget abt Nuffnang until I saw Cheo Ming Shen’s name and pics all over the blogsphere. I googled and found that he and founder of Nuffnang waz the same person.
Can sumeone tell Cheo to tell Nuffnang to reply to me?
Flip over your iPhone: “Designed … in California, assembled in China.” What it doesn’t say is that it was largely made by Japan. Components produced by Toshiba and Murata account for about a third of the iPhone’s total bill of materials, a higher proportion than from any other country. Courtesy of the FT’s Lex
Or the brutality of the Net. Or “Easy come, easy go”.
Remember MySpace? Latest woes — cutting half of staff.
MySpace valuation: That would put the valuation at about $500 million to $1.2 billion–with the lower end being LESS than Rupert paid for it, and the upper end being twice what he paid for it (hardly the steal of the century).
Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/henry-blodget-myspace-worth-zero-2010-2#ixzz1An0bhJ6J All in US$ and Murdoch paid US$580m for it
Facebook is now valued at US$50bn. But only a few yrs ago MySpace was “valued” at US$65bn, though the foot notes said US$5bn.
Wayne Chang’s lawsuit claims he is entitled to a portion of the original $65m settlement made with Facebook.
The 27-year-old formed a file-sharing network called i2hub while studying at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, which he later merged with their social network ConnectU in 2004.
ConnectU was bought by Facebook as part of the settlement and Mr Chang said that means he is due a share of the deal.
Mr Chang said he was “back-stabbed” and that he has been treated the way the Winklevosses claim they have been treated by Facebook.