18 November 2007

When the wind blows, thank the government

Is there anyone left in Singapore who still feels that free speech is a fundamental right? Three examples of censorship, each fortunately reversed. Full essay.

7 comments:

Alan Wong said...

I think our leaders and bureaucrats all have pig brains ("Ren Tho Chu Nau").

Their mindset appears to border on the assumption that if such "immoral" materials are out of sight from the public, then our society will progress into a highly and morally upright society.

On hindsight, the most important question that one should raise to MDA is why is it that they are not imposing an outright ban on internet access since based on MDA standards, this would be the most evil form of information transfer easily accesible by our very innocent young.

Ned Stark said...

Well Mr Au, isn't that already happening in Singapore? Once in a while you will get letters which thanks the government for every little thing, rightly or wrongly. Of course i do not begrudge that they have done some thing (economic progress is one but of course there is a big grey area) but all this backslapping is nauseating to the extreme. Indeed it is uniquely Singapore.

infoseeker said...

As the old man had said, we have a clean, corrupt-free and efficient government. But do we really have to believe it is so.

Our government are very protective of their squeaky clean image, they are trying to show the world that Singapore is the cleanest society. But money does not care about that. When big global players enter into our arena, are the government willing to pay big time for the fallouts.

Come on, all we can do is try to limit sleaze in the digital world but there is no way you can stop it completely.

It is reported that we are the only country in the world that banned Mass Effect video game.

We have just gained another world record and now, will the person in-charge of the ban, please stand up and collect your price.

Anonymous said...

You're too harsh lah, Alex, on Ethel.

it was clearly a letter written on ignorance. she was just so happy she didnt know who to thank..and considering that its always been MDA who comes up with censorship, she probably wanted to thank them.

we live, we learn. this episode will teach distributors to be a lot more discerning and sensitive to the Singapore market next time.

aygee

Anonymous said...

Just when you think the MDA could not get more ridiculous, you see a clip like this...

http://www.mda.gov.sg/wms.www/video.htm

Anonymous said...

By the usual standards of the Singapore news media, this letter is OK. Far more sickening crap is being printed on a daily basis.

One could argue that the writer is taking pains to avoid a confrontational tone --- which I think is wise considering how small minded the PAP government is. After all, her objective is to encourage a further relaxation of the silly censorship rules. Sometimes, kissing the right ass would cause the mouth to which the ass is attached to utter the right words to the right people and bring about the desired changes.

Anonymous said...

Hi, just want to leave a comment to say that my letter to the press was edited. It had a line to say that the discerning adult audience can tell what's porn and not every scene which involves nudity is porn. Basically that line was edited out as it hit out directly at MDA to say that the organisation is our 'nanny' and we can think for ourselves. The title of the letter was added by ST and hence I guess the whole letter seemed sickeningly prostrating. No worries nor ill feelings. Guess this is the power of editing/censorship.

Ethel Chong