Malaysian minister urges media to refrain from quoting blogs ‘of no authority’

March 23, 2007

Malaysia’s news agency Bernama reports Information Minister Zainuddin Maidin as urging the press not to use blogs as their sources of information as they may not be valid.

Zainuddin said some blogs are not updated and contain inaccurate information, which could discomfit and confuse surfers.

He claimed that many blogs are run by “individuals of no authority” and therefore depend on newspapers for credibility.

“Why should you, a journalist, cite that source and then publish it in a newspaper of authority?” he said in the 20 March 2007 report. Read the rest of this entry »


Let’s hear it from women journalists

March 20, 2007

One of the topics seldom broached by the restricted media in Malaysia is the very story of restricted media itself. On the occasion of International Women’s Day on 8 March 2007, Jacqueline Ann Surin, assistant news editor for The Sun newspaper, tells ARTICLE 19 what it is like working as a journalist – and a woman journalist – in Malaysia, the progress that women have made in terms of asserting their political rights, how the media can play a role toward that end and what needs to be done to free the media. Read more.

Thailand’s Internet governance – what’s happening here?

March 16, 2007

SEAPA Chairperson Kavi Chonkittavorn writes in The Nation about Thailand’s messy Internet strategy (or lack thereof), and how it has impacted adversely on freedom of expression and press freedom in the Kingdom since a military coup ousted the Thaksin government last September. Read more.

On 77th bithday, imprisoned Burmese journalist U Win Tin demands his right to be free

March 12, 2007

uwintin2.jpgBurmese journalist U Win Tin, imprisoned for almost 18 years by the military junta, marked his 77th birthday on 12 March 2007 by issuing a rare call for resistance against the regime.

Reporters Without Borders and the Burma Media Association said: “The inhumanity of this military junta, which has imprisoned a sick, 77-year-old man for nearly 18 years, needs no further proof…”

“I am not going to beg you to free me. It is my right to be freed because I have served 18 years of my 20-year sentence and I qualify for early release,” U Win Tin reportedly said to the director general of the prison service when the latter visited on 8 March.

See the full RSF report here.

Vietnam expels BBC reporter

March 8, 2007

BBC correspondent Bill Hayton is being forced to leave Vietnam where he’s been reporting from since last May. The authoritarian government has refused to renew his press visa, according to Reporters Without Borders (RSF). Hayton had written about the repression on dissidents and refused to comply with the rule requiring foreign journalists to ask for permission before interviewing a local citizen. More here.

Governor sues editors, writer in Philippines for “libel”; editor arrested

March 8, 2007

Philippine police arrested an online newsmagazine editor and attempted to arrest her four colleagues on 7 March 2007, over a libel case, reports GMANews.TV.

Ilocos Sur Governor Luis Singson is suing “Newsbreak” editor-in-chief Maritess Danguilan-Vitug, editor Gemma Bagayaua former managing director Maan Hontiveros, business editor Lala Rimando, and staffwriter Aries Rufo for P100 million (approx. US$2.064 million). To find out more, read on.

Nine protesters released in Burma, warned of life imprisonment penalty in future

March 5, 2007

alerts-button.jpgThe military junta has released nine demonstrators arrested for participating in a 22 February 2007 protest against the regime for failing to address soaring inflation and other issues of the day, the New Delhi-based online daily reported on 27 February. Read the rest of this entry »