Malaysia’s 12th General Election: Bloggers To Turn The Tide?

Since news of Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi announcement of the dissolution of the Parliament, the Malaysian blogosphere has been abuzz with posts talking about the impending election. If the sentiment of pings in blog aggregators is a measure of the popularity of the incumbent party, things are truly not looking good for Barisan Nasional.

Many blogs that pinged Project Petaling Street on the election are critical of the fact that the Prime Minister made an about turn on his announcement a day earlier that he would not dissolve the Parliament today. They have also advised the electorate to cast their ballot wisely neither openly throwing their support for the Barisan Nasional nor the coalition made up of former opposition parties but we all sort of know where these bloggers will mark in their ballot papers, do we not?

The question is how much influence does the Malaysian blogosphere has, or the respective bloggers have for that matter, in influencing the votes? Some of the people that I spoke to offered that it may have a bearing on urban votes but rural votes are another story altogether. Whatever it is, how effective bloggers and blogs are in swaying support and bringing in the votes in this general election will all be known in due time. My take is that the real battle is still out there in the real world. The reach of blogs in Malaysia is still very limited to have a meaningful impact on the election . What say you?

Author: Peter Tan

Peter Gabriel Tan. Penangite residing in the Klang Valley. Blissfully married to Wuan. A LaSallian through and through. Slave to three cats. Wheelchair user since 1984. End-stage renal disease since 2017. Principal Facilitator at Peter Tan Training specialising in Disability Equality Training. Former columnist of Breaking Barriers with The Borneo Post. This blog chronicles my life, thoughts and opinions. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.

4 thoughts on “Malaysia’s 12th General Election: Bloggers To Turn The Tide?”

  1. Truthfully, I think bloggers do play a role. But the final influence is still not as much, because a lot of people still believe what’s being printed in the papers.

    The older people especially cannot believe that the newspapers will print lies.

  2. Peter – there is a growing group of bloggers that feel most of the postings are clearly written by those who are non-voters. What makes it more interesting is to have bloggers put their profile to proof that they are voters when the write something about how they feel about certain issues. Obviously, one can get his/her own record from SPR and paste it onto their posting. Simply – show and tell – that should be the prime policy.

    I am not getting excited at all when I read postings on PetalingStreet. I believe we can write till kingdom come but if the writer is not even a voter, do themselves a favor – stop talking about it.

  3. I think they might be spot on about the rural vs urban thingy. Next thing you know, they’ll say vote BN to prevent these classes from annihilating each other. But I guess we’ll never really know what the real outcome is.

    Judging from the kinds of pings on PPS lately, I wouldn’t bet too heavily on blogger power.

  4. I agree with the others. I don’t think that bloggers will be that influential, but I think it’s mostly those who are urbanites who will be influenced, if any. Still, I have a feeling that the BN majority will be reduced.

    I’ll also agree with Jeffrey Chua. If you’ve not registered as a voter, shaddup. You don’t dare to walk the talk, so you have no business talking about elections. However, if you’re registered but not validated, lain cerita la.

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