Bengkel Sehari Jom Tulis Novel!

 

Anda minat menulis novel? Ini mungkin peluang terbaik untuk anda menambahkan lagi pengetahuan dalam bidang penulisan. Sertai bengkel menulis novel ini bakal dikendalikan oleh penulisnya sendiri, Prof Amran Rasli yang pernah memenangi Anugerah Buku Negara bagi buku Syahidnya Kapten Luis De Souza terbitan Penerbit USIM. Bengkel ini adalah kolaborasi di antara USIM Writers Pool, Asia Mediterranean Network dan E-Sentral. Berikut adalah butiran bagi bengkel tersebut.

Tarikh: 18 Julai 2020
Fasilitator: Prof Amran Rasli, PhD

Tentatif bengkel Jom TulisNovel

0800-0900 Pendaftaran sesi taaruf
0900-1100 Tujuh Langkah untuk Menulis Novel   
1100-1130 Rehat/ Sesi Soal dan Jawab
1130-1230 Aplikasi Tujuh Langkah dalam Slot Bicara Karya Syahidnya Kapten Luis De Souza
1230-1400 Rehat/ Makan/ Solat
1400-1530 7 Tabiat  Penulis Berkesan
1530-1615 Sesi Soal dan Jawab

Jika anda berminat untuk menyertai bengkel ini, sila isikan borang pendaftaran di bawah dan hubungi nombor yang tertera untuk pertanyaan lanjut.

Borang Pendaftaran
Saya berminat untuk mengikuti Bengkel Jom Tulis Novel di USIM pada 18 Julai 2020. Saya bersetuju membayar RM125 kepada Asia Mediterranean Network (Nombor Akaun CIMB 8602531043) untuk yuran bengkel (termasuk senaskah novel Syahidnya Kapten Luis De Souza)

Nama: ………………………………….. Institusi: …………………………………………………….

Nombor WhatsApp: ………………………….… emel:…………….……………………………..

Sila hantar borang ini beserta bukti pembayaran kepada Prof Amran Rasli (Nombor Whatsapp: 011110141440, emel: amrasli@gmail.com)
Daftar segera untuk mengelakkan kekecewaan kerana bengkel ini dihadkan kepada 40 orang peserta sahaja.

 DELIMa, laman pendidikan digital baharu MoE, mendiskriminasi kandungan tempatan

DELIMA, laman pendidikan digital baharu MoE, mendiskriminasi kandungan tempatan, kata teknopreneur tempatan

 

Baru- baru ini KPM telah menlancarkan Digital Education Learning Initiatives Malaysia (DELIMa).  Ia merupakan sebuah laman pembelajaran digital yang membekalkan servis dan aplikasi pembekal luar seperti Google, Microsoft dan Apple secara percuma.

Ini maklum balas Pengarah Urusan Xentral Methods Sdn Bhd, Faiz Al Shahab mengenai perkara ini yang dikatakan telah mendiskriminasi kandungan tempatan. Beliau juga telah menyuarakan perkara ini kepada KPM bersama surat di bawah.

 

YBRS. DR. HABIBAH BINTI ABDUL RAHIM
KETUA PENGARAH PELAJARAN MALAYSIA
PEJABAT KETUA PENGARAH PELAJARAN MALAYSIA
KEMENTERIAN PENDIDIKAN MALAYSIA (KPM)
ARAS 8 BLOK E8

KOMPLEKS E, PUSAT PENTADBIRAN KERAJAAN PERSEKUTUAN
62604 WILAYAH PERSEKUTUAN PUTRAJAYA                                                                                       17 JUN 2020

 

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

YBrs. Dr. Habibah yang budiman,LAMAN SESAWANG DIGITAL EDUCATION LEARNING INITIATIVE MALAYSIA (DELIMA) MENDISKRIMINASI TEKNOLOGI DAN KANDUNGAN DIGITAL TEMPATAN

 

Merujuk perkara diatas, saya bagi pihak syarikat, sedar akan niat murni Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia untuk mendemokrasikan sumber pendidikan digital. Namun pada masa yang sama, kami berpendapat bahawa pegawai-pegawai dalam KPM secara sistematik, mendiskriminasikan teknologi dan kandungan digital tempatan.

 Pada konteks makroekonomi Negara, bagaimanakah ianya demokrasi jika kita menindas diri kita sendiri?

Saya merujuk kepada laman sesawang DELIMA, yang baru dilancarkan, dan melihat bahawa semua inisiatif aplikasi dan kandungan digital tempatan telah diketepikan.

KPM dengan bangganya mengagong-agongkan teknologi dan aplikasi luar negara, dan berusaha sedaya upaya untuk menenggelamkan segala inisiatif tempatan yang maju.

YBrs. Dr. Habibah,

Untuk pengetahuan, Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia (PNM) telah pun memulakan inisiatif perpustakaan digital sejak 2013, dan telah menggabungkan beberapa pelantar sumber digital dibawah payung u-Pustaka (jawapan PNM untuk mendemokrasikan sumber digital), dan perkhidmatan kami berjenama ELIB, menjadi pelantar sumber pinjaman e-Buku yang membawa variasi judul-judul tempatan.

ELIB secara statistiknya menyumbangkan lebih daripada 250ribu patron untuk u-Pustaka, dan untuk tahun 2020 sehingga 31 Mei sahaja, ELIB telah membawa lebih daripada 136 ribu pinjaman e-Buku, lebih daripada 1.2 juta hits trafik, dan lebih daripada 2 juta paparan halaman untuk u-Pustaka. Tidak dapat dinafikan bahawa ELIB adalah perkhidmatan paling popular dalam u-Pustaka, dan sudah tentu jauh meninggalkan Overdrive dari segi kepenggunaan.

Izinkan saya tambah sedikit lagi data, iaitu pecahan genre pinjaman. Mengikut dapatan statistik juga, 81% daripada pinjaman di ELIB adalah daripada semua jenis kategori dalam Bahasa Malaysia, manakala koleksi New York Times Bestseller memberi sumbangan sebanyak 12% daripada pinjaman, dan 7% lagi terdiri daripada kategori-kategori Bahasa Cina dan juga Bahasa Inggeris daripada terbitan tempatan. Ini adalah bukan sebuah fenomena, ianya berlaku kerana majoriti rakyat Malaysia kini lebih selesa dengan berbahasa Melayu, disebabkan oleh polisi menggunakan Bahasa Malaysia sebagai bahasa pengantaran dalam sekolah sejak 1976, sebuah polisi KPM sendiri.

Dr. Habibah yang saya hormati,

Jadinya soalan besar disini adalah mengapa dalam laman sesawang DELIMA, jika ikhlas, pautan pusat sumber bukan sahaja mengabaikan ELIB, malah juga mengabaikan laman web u-Pustaka (yang lebih rasmi), dan mengutamakan pautan Overdrive, yang merupakan sumber e-Buku daripada Amerika Syarikat dalam u-Pustaka?

Saya lihat juga tiada sebarang kandungan atau pun aplikasi daripada pemain tempatan yang lain, kerana jika perkhidmatan percuma yang menjadi pilihan, wujud juga koleksi video Edunation dan juga KPM eTextbook Reader, iaitu kepunyaan Perbadanan Kota Buku, agensi KPM sendiri, yang juga telah diketepikan. Ini semua adalah pemain-pemain lama dan matang dengan solusi yang maju untuk pendidikan di Malaysia, dan KPM tidak boleh memberi alasan tidak tahu. 

Apakah harapan untuk pemain industri tempatan jika sikap pegawai-pegawai dalam KPM adalah begini?

Pegawai-pegawai tidak membawa bincang secara telus sebarang rancangan dengan pemegang taruh tempatan, lagi-lagi yang kecil, hanya mengambil kira pandangan juru jual teknologi Barat atau paling hampir pun syarikat Telko tempatan sahaja.

Setelah melawat pameran pendidikan digital di luar Negara, pegawai-pegawai yang bergesel bahu dengan pembangun teknologi Barat ini merasakan mereka adalah pakar dalam bidang pendidikan digital, walaupun tidak melalui sebarang pengalaman pembangunan teknologi (ada perbezaan ketara antara membaca teori dan melaksanakan sesuatu untuk kegunaan kehidupan).

Sikap KPM adalah seperti orang kampung yang malu dengan orang kampungnya sendiri.

Saya faham bahawa alasan yang akan diberikan adalah tidak cukup masa untuk melibatkan semua pautan, namun sikap untuk hand pick Overdrive sebagai pautan menunjukkan sentimen pegawai-pegawai KPM yang hadap dengan produk Barat dan memandang rendah terhadap inisiatif tempatan.

Mengapa saya rasa amat kecewa adalah pada masa yang sama, wang Negara dicurah untuk syarikat-syarikat pemula tempatan memperkenalkan teknologi dan ekosistem baharu, supaya penjanaan ekonomi menuju revolusi industri 4.0 dapat diusahakan. Dana dan geran diberikan, tumpuan dan rangkaian dipupuk oleh agensi-agensi seperti MDEC, Cradle, Magic, MTDC dan yang lain, namun apabila tiba pada realiti, tiada sebarang sokongan yang diberikan oleh KPM dalam pelaksanaan atau pun perolehan teknologi tempatan.

Setiap negara maju mempunyai syarikat-syarikat teknologi yang mengetengahkan pengaruh dan mengumpul data untuk mereka membuat bekal menuju Revolusi Industri 4.0, kita pula di Malaysia dengan sewenang-wenangnya memberi data kepada teknologi luar supaya mereka dapat mencapai cita-cita mereka, meninggalkan kita sekadar pengguna bertauliah sahaja.

Sekali lagi ini jelas kelihatan apabila pautan moe-dl.edu.my adalah sekadar perkhidmatan ubah hala ke pelayan Google, supaya data setiap anak-anak kita disimpan oleh Google. Mudah dikatakan.

Namun sedekad dari sekarang, siapa yang perlu menjawab kepada anak-anak kita yang terasa diri mereka menjadi mangsa kecerdasan buatan (artificial intelligence) yang bermula daripada dataraya teknologi luar yang dibenarkan bersekongkol dengan KPM? Sudah tentu pegawai-pegawai yang membuat tetapan ini sudah pun pencen dan tidak bertanggungjawab lagi terhadap keputusan ini. KPM membuat keputusan hari ini yang tidak melindungi kepentingan masa depan murid-murid. Jika pegawai-pegawai tidak mementingkan perihal murid-murid, perihal industri tempatan, untuk siapakah pula pegawai KPM memberi khidmat?

Saya berharap bahawa perkara ini dibawa bincang, dan KPM juga perlu memahami senario semasa di Malaysia dengan lebih mendekati pemaju-pemaju teknologi tempatan. Semoga perkara ini diambil berat untuk kepentingan Negara kita.

Terima kasih saya dahulukan.

 

Yang Benar,

Syed Faiz Al-Shahab
Pengarah Urusan

 

Features in E-Sentral App to Nurture Reading Habits

Tuesday, February 25, 2020, Cyberjaya – Amidst all the political fiasco in the country, this year, Kuala Lumpur city has been recognized as the World Book Capital by UNESCO.

In line with this theme, the government, NGOs and industry players have worked hard to enhance the culture of reading in the country.

We often think that Malaysians do not like to read, but this assumption is completely misleading.

Malaysians in this era read more than they did decades ago because we always read on the screen of our devices.

However, what we read today is usually short texts in the form of messages, postings and snippet sharings.

According to various studies, the challenge in reading short texts promotes shorter attention span and reduction in mind concentration as well as stamina.

Xentral Methods Sdn Bhd, the operator of e-Sentral ebook store, has developed technologies that utilize data and AI to overcome the challenges short text reading bring.

According to e-Sentral Managing Director, Faiz Al-Shahab, long text reading or long form reading is a form of exercise for our minds.

“By reading long texts in the form of stories, biographies, information, or entertainment, our minds will develop stamina for a longer attention span, encourages cognitive thinking, stimulate imagination, and more thinking in general.

Unfortunately, we all agree that reading is important, but we do not understand why it is important”, Faiz said.

Faiz also explains how the new feature in E-Sentral app can be used to foster reading through technology.

“The updated e-Sentral application provides intelligence and analysis of our reading health.

A metaphor will be something like a weight loss app, where we measure calories, walking or running distance and so on, e-Sentral app measures user’s reading habits, and time spent reading.

The performance will also be provided in the form of brief reports from week to week, so that users will be encouraged to read more long text material.

Directly, e-Sentral app is an application that is used to stimulate reading interest, or to train yourself to practice a healthy long-text reading culture”, continues Faiz.

This technology behind reading analysis has also been applied by the company in digital libraries for schools.

In this context, a student’s digital book loan will be automatically measured when the student uses the digital book.

When students read of flip through pages of the digital books loaned, each page is matched by the time spent.

Then, a report will be generated by the system for teachers to monitor student’s reading performance.

Pioneering digital book industry and technology in Southeast Asia, E-Sentral began operations in 2012 with less than 100 ebook titles, and now offers over 300 thousand titles, and now champions long-form text reading through technology.

“Reading ebooks is becoming more common because naturally, consumers are switching the format to digital as consumers spend more time with devices.

As predicted, ebooks are also becoming more and more popular,” Faiz explained.

“On the other hand, ebooks are cheaper, more practical, because we can get or buy them anytime, there is always stock, no need to go out, as long as there is Internet, we can get the ebook and start reading.

For those who love to read, ebooks make it easy for them to carry multiple titles with them wherever they go, as if a small library were at their fingertips ”, continued Faiz.

As the print industry deteriorates, the use of digital books has increased day by day. e-Sentral has posted an increase of 177% in sales over the last 18 months.

The company’s intention is to become a leading application in reading and education in Southeast Asia.

 

Dekad Baharu, Nekad Baharu

 

 

Dekad Baharu, Nekad Baharu

Faiz Al-Shahab

 

Mengimbas kembali dekad 2010an, selain daripada perkembangan teknologi yang rancak, bidang lain seperti dunia seni, sastera dan muzik secara keseluruhan tidak meninggalkan apa-apa yang betul-betul dikenangi sebagai persona abad ini.

Dunia teknologi kreatif dan peralatan dikejutkan dengan pelbagai inovasi namun saingan hangat arena ini terbantut apabila Steve Jobs meninggal dunia pada hujung tahun 2011.

Budaya seni dan muzik pula melihat gelombang Korean menawan benua apabila fenomena Hallyu menghantui dunia hiburan.

Namun dalam kalangan seniman dan ahli muzik Barat yang telah pun matang dan berperingkat melalui pelbagai fasa khususnya abad 70an, 80an, dan 90an, tidak menonjol pula abad ini malah tidak menghasilkan apa-apa yang gemilang.

Dunia konflik dan politik tidak kurang kemelutnya selama sepuluh tahun ini.

Paling ketara adalah gerakan Arab Spring yang bermula di Tunisia pada awal abad yang lepas, kesinambungan daripada peperangan di Syria dan Libya ini menyebabkan berjuta manusia mengambil jalan untuk menjadi pelarian di Eropah, alasan untuk fahaman sayap kanan berleluasa semula di negara-negara Barat.

Sehingga kini, Arab Spring masih meninggalkan kesan negatif dengan krisis kebuluran terbesar pada zaman moden yang kini masih berlangsung di Yemen dan disokong oleh kerajaan Saudi Arabia.

Dari segi fahaman dan haluan politik pula, dekad yang lalu tidak membawa apa-apa yang baharu dalam falsafah ataupun perjuangan.

Nada utama politik 2010an bertemakan kesempitan, khususnya ekonomi.

Kesempitan ekonomi menyebabkan Arab Spring tercetus.

Kesempitan nilai demokrasi menyebabkan mulut celupar Donald Trump memenangkan beliau kerusi presiden Amerika Syarikat.

Kesempitan ekonomi menyebabkan retorik pendatang asing mengambil peluang pekerjaan di United Kingdom menjadi isu popular dan seterusnya menyebabkan reforandum untuk meninggalkan Kesatuan Eropah.

 Kesempitan ekonomi dan harapan menyebabkan pilihanraya di Malaysia mengejutkan dunia dengan kemenangan persekutuan parti yang tidak masuk akal, demi menyelamatkan Malaysia daripada terus muflis.

Sementara itu, penduduk dunia teruskan gaya hidup moden yang terpaku pada media sosial dan seterusnya memendekkan daya pemerhatian.

Dalam keghairahan tamadun menerima teknologi sebagai cara hidup, manusia juga telah mengambil langkah kebelakang.

Manusia mempunyai daya perhatian yang pendek, lebih mementingkan diri sendiri (selfish), dan tidak memikirkan masa depan.

Tiada kajian yang mengetengahkan perkara-perkara ini, namun tidak dapat dinafikan firasat setiap manusia mengatakan bahawa tamadun yang baharu ini melalaikan manusia dengan kebendaan sahaja.

Perkara ini terlalu berleluasa sehingga memerlukan seorang budak belasan tahun dari Sweden bernama Greta Thunberg untuk mengingatkan semua bahawa masa depan manusia telah diabaikan. Lalu golongan dewasa pun terus bersorak dan menepuk tangan menyahut seruan Greta seolah-olah kenyataannya adalah penemuan yang baharu.

Walaupun kata-kata Greta adalah terang lagi bersuluh, namun ianya tidak masuk akal buat kebanyakan penduduk dunia.

Dekad 2010an telah mewariskan tamadun manusia yang merosot, yang dipenuhi oleh penduduk yang jadi sekadar robot mekanikal mengikut rentak teknologi tanpa berfikir.

Kita sering bangga mengatakan bahawa manusia moden mempunyai daya perhatian yang pendek, cepat bosan, dan perlukan bahan-bahan dalam bentuk snippet, video dan grafik sahaja.

Kendatipun begitu, daya perhatian yang pendek membuat manusia kurang berfikir dan mempunyai stamina minda yang rendah.

Agak berat sebelah untuk saya bercakap begini, namun faktor utama mengapa daya perhatian manusia menjadi singkat adalah kerana terlalu banyak membaca teks pendek.

Jika kita mengatakan bahawa kita tidak membaca, ianya tidak benar, malah manusia zaman sekarang membaca lebih banyak daripada manusia abad-abad sebelum ini kerana kita melekat pada peranti-peranti yang menyajikan mesej-mesej dan posting-posting setiap minit.

Walau bagaimana pun, kebanyakan yang dibaca kita hari-hari adalah teks pendek dan tidak berkhasiat untuk minda.

Pada masa yang sama, beribu-ribu kajian telah membuktikan jika kita membaca teks panjang, atau dalam bahasa Inggerisnya – Long Form Reading, minda kita akan sentiasa bekerja.

Apabila minda kita bekerja, imaginasi kita menjadi tinggi.

Daya fikir dan pemikiran kognitif juga akan terdorong, dan pemahaman kita mengenai dunia dan persekitaran akan menjadi lebih jelas.

Pada zaman ini, pendidikan formal dan gred yang bagus sahaja tidak memadai untuk memelihara nasib kita dan anak-anak kita.

Pendidikan formal yang berasaskan ujian adalah sekadar penanda aras sistem-sistem yang mengacukan manusia, dan sukar untuk proses ini menjadikan manusia pelbagai dan berdaya saing dalam hidup sebenar.

Oleh itu, apabila kita membaca dan melancong, perspektif hidup kita akan berbeza, dan kita mempunyai kelebihan berbanding orang-orang lain yang tidak membaca dan sekadar mengikut sistem.

Ibubapa serta khalayak umum sering mementingkan pendidikan dan kesihatan anak-anak kita, namun tidak memberi perhatian yang setimpal kepada budaya membaca teks panjang,

Sama seperti mengayuh basikal, berenang dan mengaji, tabiat membaca perlu dipupuk, dan tidak akan berlaku dengan senang.

Kerana ramai ibubapa juga bukan dari golongan yang membaca, ianya menjadi lebih sukar untuk mendorong anak-anak untuk membaca kerana nikmat membaca itu sendiri hilang daripada jiwa.

Akan tetapi faktor yang paling ketara adalah kerana membaca tidak menunjukkan hasil pulangan kebendaan dan status.

Sijil kolej dan universiti pada satu ketika dahulu dapat menjanjikan pekerjaan yang lebih baik untuk golongan muda, maka ibubapa pun tanpa berfikir panjang melabur untuk pendidikan tinggi anak-anak.

Membaca pula tidak memulangkan sebarang hasil yang langsung, oleh itu lebih sukar untuk ibu bapa dan khalayak ramai memahami mengapa ianya penting dalam kehidupan.

Oleh itu, dekad baharu ini, perlu dihiasi dengan nekad yang baharu, iaitu asahkan dua niat berikut; lebih banyak berjalan dan melancong, dan juga membiasakan membaca teks panjang untuk kesihatan minda kita dan seterusnya kesejahteraan Negara kita.    

Other articles by the Author:

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation Series

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation [Part II]

MALAYSIA: THE INFERIOR NATION [PART III]

MALAYSIA: THE INFERIOR NATION (PART IV)

 

Artikel Bahasa Melayu

Perangkap Minda Arus Perdana

 

English articles

Made in Malaysia: A Prejudice in Disguise

When Mainstream Becomes Fake, and Fake Becomes Mainstream

 

MAJLIS PELANCARAN ORBIT & KOMPONENNYA

Sejajar dengan kempen mempromosi Kuala Lumpur sebagai Ibu kota Buku Sedunia 2020 yang diiktiraf oleh UNESCO, dan juga kempen Dekad Membaca Kebangsaan 2030 yang diterajui oleh Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia.

Xentral Methods, sebagai pengelola e-Sentral telah melancarkan sebuah platfom iaitu ORBIT khas buat para penulis bebas, wartawan dan pensyarah atau pendidik.  Majlis telah disempurnakan oleh YB Dato’ Sri Mustapa Bin Mohamed, Ahli Parlimen Jeli. Majlis ini telah diadakan di KL Tourism Bureau, Jalan Tangsi Kuala Lumpur.

Antara komponen yang terdapat di dalam platform ORBIT ialah ORBIT,  ORBIT-X, dan ORBIT-J.

ORBIT, singkatan untuk Otomasi Penerbitan, direka khas untuk mempercepat penerbitan buku elektronik untuk para penulis.

ORBIT lengkapkan dengan kemudahan permohonan ISBN secara dalam talian melalui kerjasama dengan Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia.

Selain daripada platfom penerbitan elektronik yang ekspres ini, ORBIT juga menyediakan komponen khusus untuk gaya penulisan yang lain dalam bentuk ORBIT-X dan ORBIT-J.

ORBIT-X memberi fokus kepada pembangunan buku teks digital interaktif untuk sektor pendidikan tinggi dengan menyediakan sebuah platform untuk para pensyarah dan para pendidik melontarkan idea dan manuskrip bagi penghasilan buku teks digital yang berinteraktif.

E-Sentral melihatkan sektor buku teks digital interaktif dalam pendidikan tinggi sebagai satu pasaran yang baru dan belum dipelopori, dan oleh yang demikian E-Sentral berhajat untuk melabur dengan membangunkan buku teks digital interaktif untuk pendidikan tinggi secara agresif bersama penulis-penulis bertauliah bagi pasaran masa hadapan.

Orbit- X diilhamkan ekoran kejayaan e-Sentral dan Perbadanan Kota Buku dalam pengelolaan NDTP (Platform Buku Teks Digital Kebangsaan), sebuah platform untuk membantu penerbit membangunkan fasa pertama buku teks digital interaktif untuk Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia.

ORBIT- J pula, merupakan kemudahan untuk kewartawanan komuniti.

ORBIT-J menapis  permohonan untuk menjadi wartawan kepada platform komuniti ini supaya kredibiliti dan kesahihan berita dalam platform ini boleh dijamin dengan baik.

Hajat ORBIT-J adalah untuk menghidupkan semangat kewartawanan di Malaysia dengan menyediakan satu saluran berita yang bebas komersil.

Untuk dapatkan maklumat lanjut, boleh rujuk kepada pautan di bawah:

ORBIT https://orbit.e-sentral.com/login
ORBIT -J https://reporter.e-sentral.com/login
ORBIT- X https://orbitx.e-sentral.com/apply/home
E-SENTRAL https://www.e-sentral.com/
XENTRAL METHODS https://www.xentralmethods.com/

 

When Mainstream Becomes Fake, and Fake Becomes Mainstream

By Faiz Al-Shahab

 

The Game of Thrones season finale craze have brought about once again the smoking corner small talk over the similarities of the Malaysian 14th General Election with the HBO sensational series.

In this fantasy drama that is a closet political science case study journal, the uncanny resemblance – of rivalry and hatred between Malaysian then opposition parties in GE-14 and the ruling families portrayed in the series whereby everyone had to put aside their differences in the name of survival and to defeat the army of the dead – is pretty obvious.

Except today…there will always be an “except” for Malaysia…the army of dead is far from dead, and the ruling families are at each other’s throats again, with hardly any reform put through.

Besides economy and education, some of the issues the mass were most upset about, such as the police system, judiciary system and the civil service, are still left as it is.

Perhaps challenging these orders will cause too much commotion in this rather peaceful country, hence easier to let it be.

However, one component of the country’s system which should already by now have gone through an overhaul, is the media.

One would think that the media is not as “invincible” as the ones mentioned above, but turns and twists in the country have left the media to still maintain status quo.

The funny part to all this is that journalism, just like engineering, architecture, and discipline of medicine, pillars on integrity and professionalism.

Well, one can argue that law and accounting are also one of those professional career that stands on good values, but look at them, turn your head away and many will indulge in crime and corruption.

I guess professional integrity in this context is a weak argument after all.

Media in this country, despite of a liberal environment now in Malaysia, remains despicable.

Reasons to why there are so much fabricated news and civilians taking matters in to their hands in spreading none curated news is simply because the mainstream media are nothing more than just prostitutes to corporations and politicians.

For instance, there are not many work of investigative journalism taking place.

The Education Minister rant for two hours on plans and policies, and yet the media chose to pick up a petty issue regarding black or white school shoes and turn it to a debate which wasted everyone’s time.

The Prime Minister spoke for half hour on what the nation need to do to bring it back on the right track heading towards Fourth Industrial Revolution and the media picked up on his statement over so much money is spent on killing people.

It was a pact deliberated by the media, because all of them came up with the same headline, despite of no official press statement on the comment.

Usually, most media agencies will bow down to invites of VIPs and will rather swamp a media conference for official statements rather than seeking the truth.

To some extent the perception above is very unfair.

Some media friends have express their guilt and dissatisfaction of forced involvement in orchestrating news, but it is a small trade off to having their families being followed and harassed.

And so because of safety we leave politics alone, and look at commercial products instead.

Disappointingly, similar resentment in commerce too as the media will remain loyal to the brand owners who feeds them with advertising money.

Pathetically, in many cases too, media will praise and hide all defects of a product with the thinking that the corporation behind the product will eventually become their advertiser.

In all of this, whilst the so called professionals are busy trying to make money at any cost, whilst the law and judiciary system sympathizes corporations, the losers remain to be the Malaysian public.

This is mainly due to the notion that effects of partial truth in information and news is not as severe as signing off a poorly designed bridge or multi-story building.

Whilst the foresight is that misleading information will only cause loss of money to the mass fools, a collapsed bridge signed off by a dodgy engineer can cause deaths.

What was not taught in school is that partial truth can also cause death of lives.

So anyway, what is needed from Malaysian media?

The citizens is in dire need of investigative journalism, meaning more questions and digging.

This may not be welcoming by many, but it is the only way that voice of integrity can be restored again in this country.

So much so that the downfall of previous ruling party was the work of a foreign journalist, whilst for years, the local journalists witness all the buffoonery yet kept their mouth shut.

The media should do their bit, and grow more guts!

Commercial product whom have benefited from rogue media will continue bluffing the public, and public will continue falling into the traps, until one day, the trust is completely destroyed.

That day, advertisements and social media will not work anymore.

Perhaps there is a sneaky suspicion that our media does not understand the subject matter that they are reporting.

Therefore they will report only on parts that they understand, which at the end of it, is missing the point completely.

Malaysia need cleverer and smarter people, reporters included.

What the country can opt for is probably a platform for community journalism.

This platform, where the reporters are members of the public graded by public rating, hopefully will bring news that are more related to us, news which can reveal the hidden truth, and news that are valuable and trustworthy and free from commercial bribery.

With time, we shall wait and see if this can reduce the fake news movement in the country.

Meantime, Ramadhan Kareem everyone.

 

Other articles by the Author:

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation Series

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation [Part II]

MALAYSIA: THE INFERIOR NATION [PART III]

MALAYSIA: THE INFERIOR NATION (PART IV)

 

Artikel Bahasa Melayu

Perangkap Minda Arus Perdana

Dekad Baharu, Nekad Baharu

 

English articles

Made in Malaysia: A Prejudice in Disguise

 

Made in Malaysia: A Prejudice in Disguise

A technopreneur’s point of view written from the heart by: Faiz Al-Shahab

 

Over the years Malaysian government have spent millions if not billions of Ringgit to cultivate local science and technology.

In that journey, many agencies, boutique investment banks, loans, investment arms, tax exemptions, subsidies, reliefs and grants were prepared to encourage development of new local ideas as well as strengthening already existing technologies among big and small companies domestically.

No doubt that along the way, there had been many rogue parties that took advantage of these privileges, but it is also undeniable that many more parties took these perks seriously in their pursuits.

The grandeur of this idea at a national level is flawless.

Local products ensures money does not flow out of the country when unnecessary, resulting in less imports and perhaps a better chance to export.

Without trying to praise the old man too much, Tun Mahathir during his younger days as the Prime Minister understood this very well.

He steered Malaysia towards venturing into many heavy industries, namely automotive, construction and even oil and gas.

Not all were successful or had happy endings, but the idea of containing cash within the country was there.

As a business, even if the money falls to your domestic competitor, it will mean that the money has higher chance of being spent for the well-being of the local economy, employment, and taxation.

It will ensure a conducive environment to do business all around, and if the cash does not benefit your business immediately, it may do in the future as it is still floating locally.

This is the distinct difference between a visionary politician, and the rest, who just loves to hear themselves sing.

This is the story of how Malaysia have lost the plot along the way, perhaps with a little bit of help from those pop idol politicians.

To put it in simple terms, the qualms of Malaysian technopreneurs are similar, and having spoken to many peers along the years, it can be concluded that Malaysians, ourselves are not very proud or understanding when it comes to our own products. 

Inferiority or lack of comprehension of how things work allow many Malaysians to be jumpy and prejudice towards our fellow men.

Running a business, if compared to creating something new with not a mature market are completely different ball games.

Just to give a better horizon, creating a new market, along with educating the public and enterprises is always the silent elephant in the room when you don’t have massive funding.

Usually when you are small, and many of what you are developing are still not at its decency, it is harder for you to capture the imagination of many, including the investors, government and agencies.

You are typically being looked down upon when you are at a start up phase, and this is understandably normal.

Despite of these initial symptoms of prejudice, the early stage is always the easiest phase.

When you are on the growth phase, this is when problems start occurring.

Growth means the company becomes hungry, hungry for revenue.

Revenue seeking means meeting a lot of people, Malaysians rather.

When meeting government agencies for example, they will start comparing you to foreign technology of a similar field according to their understanding.

Similar attitude is received from the suit blazing city dwellers and corporations.

With these bunch of people, usually when comparisons are made, not only a far superior technology from abroad is usually compared with, they will also expect a miniscule of the foreign price tag since you are local.

They have no shame in saying that they have spent millions on a foreign technology, and will tell you straight to your face that they are not even willing to spend a hundred thousand with you for the same thing.

Bear in mind, most of the characters above will not survive for three days running their own business if they had to.

Government bodies in particular will be new to the technology that you provide, but they are usually interested as they see a realistic solution to their domestic problem.

The government bodies will be interested to learn from you, build the standards and specifications with you, but yet when comes to the crunch, you will still lose out in the tender process, weirdly enough, to companies that are not even a player in the field, but representing a foreign company that is.

Undoubtedly, the cost for tender or quotation is simply much higher.

At times, as the pioneer, you can prove that you are the only one that can provide the service in the country.

It should be an advantage as you are local and a sole provider, but even this can be turned to a punishment.

Being successful in your sphere as a Malaysian technopreneur will make the departments question on monopoly, or even suggest to not work with you since this can potentially make you big.

Again, one can say a similar treatment can be reflected with big corporations in Malaysia.

Once you are on a growth stage, the typical thing to happen is that the bigger boys will try to crush you as they may see a new local player to be of threat for the share of a new market.

What is unusual is that rather than trying to collaborate and work with a new emerging local player, Malaysian big corporations prefer to bring in a foreign player to compete with you.

Again, this is a prejudice in thinking that they can do better, or that local products is not good enough for them.

Contrary, this will not only lead to unnecessary competition in a still fragile new market locally, but as mentioned earlier, it will make money flow out of the country.

You can still argue that perhaps the occurrences above are nothing to do with local prejudice, but maybe elements of hidden corruption.

To make matters worse for any local technopreneurs out there, is the public sentiment itself.

For the following factor, corruption is definitely not in consideration.

Perhaps laced with long time stigma over low quality, Malaysians tend to think that local products are not good despite of being cheaper.

The bar level Malaysians put for local technologies are always against the giants of the West and Japan.

This is perfectly fine, if it is judged reasonably with common sense.

From the tech world perspective at least, no one seems to be bothered to understand the development required in making a good application, software, machine tool, etc.

Hence Malaysians blindly expect that an application of a Series-A Malaysian start-up should be equivalent of a multi billion corporation, if not they will simply put in their complains and customer support issues inside the rating commentary box to leave a permanent scar.

Whilst this is all advantageous and exciting for consumers, if misappropriated, it is used to go against the local ecosystem.

Why discriminatory? Because given the same scenario of frustration, a Malaysian is reluctant to place a smear in a commentary box of a foreign app, due to their own inferiority with the international world.

This could be caused by a simple fact that they are conscious about their written English, hence the lack of confidence to display their emotion in writing on an international platform.

Sometimes when we are in familiar environment, we feel that we have a better understanding of what is going on and are more vocal.

When we are in unknown territories, we have inferiority complex and will not show true colours in case if what we are saying can perhaps expose our own lack of comprehension.

At home soil, the public is less forgiving, even if it is their own stupidity to be the root cause, they are not ashamed to announce it.

This short coming in Malaysian mentality is an unnecessary hurdle for progress.

So from here, there is only two routes to the problem above in New Malaysia.

Either we abandoned all efforts and investments for local science and technology, or we buckle up and embrace it.

Embracing local products should not mean sacrifices or compromises.

If it does, then it defeats the purpose.

Embracing local technology means that the government, private sectors, and the public, should give initial support to provide a fair chance for the local product and technology to prosper, and perhaps later benefiting our society by providing lower costs for goods, employments, and a better public service due to taxation that is gained from these businesses.

It is not rocket science and it has been done before, search for Kempen Beli Buatan Malaysia.

It is also the emotion and self belief amongst the Malaysians that need to be restore.

Best thing to do is, before we do anything, look in the mirror and ask yourself, if you have done enough? And hope that you still have a conscious to react to it…

The other route will be just not to bother, and jump on the foreign band wagon when it arrives, if it ever arrives.

We can use American, Chinese and European goods and technologies, and still maintain satisfaction and happiness.

We can live a life with artificial intelligence, big data, block chain, and everything else the next industrial revolution promises, as long as it is not ours.

We can continue living a life of consuming and importing, and still be happy.

But remember that with all good times eventually will snow ball to very hard times, but why should we care?

Leave it for the future generation to figure it out, it is not a problem for us to worry about.

We should only focus at creating the problems for now.

 

Other articles by the Author:

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation Series

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation

Malaysia: The Inferior Nation [Part II]

MALAYSIA: THE INFERIOR NATION [PART III]

MALAYSIA: THE INFERIOR NATION (PART IV)

 

Artikel Bahasa Melayu

Perangkap Minda Arus Perdana

Dekad Baharu, Nekad Baharu

 

English articles

When Mainstream Becomes Fake, and Fake Becomes Mainstream