New Kids On The Blog
I missed Pesta Blogger at the weekend, not out of rancour like last year, but due to flu, fugue and fatigue. I'm also not a great one for social networking; my blogging is between me and my computer - oh, and you, my valued readers. Putting my face out there wouldn't validate what I articulate. Oh, and apologies to those who've recently invited me to join Plurk, StumbledUpon and Zurnia - but which 'John' invited me? I won't Twitter, put my Face in the Book, or Flikrin the social gloaming either.
I'm not that bored with my life.
But I would like to have caught the sessions on building society, in the hopes that there would be political action. That several 'communities' have sprung up based around the geographical closeness of bloggers, notably in Yogyakarta where in the wake of the wake of the 2006 earthquake charitable wprks continue, is positive news. For far too long groups in this have organised around charismatic (wealthy) religious and political leaders. The organic growth of Indonesia's blogosphere, currently estimated at 300,000 strong, although I have no figures on those which are regularly updated, is exponentially significant.
However, I would be interested to know something about the educational background and employment status of Indonesian bloggers. There will be few outside universities or offices, because few have access to the internet.
We are given to understand that the Indonesian government, through the Ministry of Communication and information is fully supportive, and the Minister Muhammed Nuh has promised that no blogger would be arrested during his tenure. Ah, but that was last year, and now we're seeing writers of letters published in the mass media facing criminal charges for having the audacity to write about how he, and many other tenants in Mangga Dua were allegedly duped by the real estate company, and, as I've already reported
, a blogger has been charged for "allegedly maligning a lawmaker".
Oh, and apparently, another one is being sought having mocked the prophet Muhammed.
I would have been interested to know more about how Indonesian bloggers intend to use their constitutional right to free expression. What political actions could be taken? Perhaps there should be campaigns in support of whistleblowers, or martyrs to the hypocritical.
Anyway, as I couldn't make it, do allow me to publish an email I received from a correspondent.The Indonesian Deputy Director for Promotion in Electronic Media, Ministry of Culture & Tourism, Republic of IndonesiaUses a gmail e-mail address.Totally.
And the new kids?
-1. From the Indonesian word 'ombak', meaning 'wave' (a wave of change) 2. Om: a meditation intonation transcending language; a symbol used to realize the unknown; the truth; unity 3. Mbak, the Javanese word for 'sister', 'young woman'.
They seem to be a self-contained community, with at least six writers listed, although Prodita, who wrote about the Blogger Gathering isn't amongst those listed. One of them says she's got no friends
but says that Jakartass is a regular read, so s/he can count me in as one.
Then there's a very nice three-part ABC of Jakarta
, which says almost as much as the book I keep plugging
There's a vibrancy about their writing which augurs well; there's no room for complacency in this blog.