This possibility looms large after the government reached a sober assessment that it could all end in tears for the Barisan Nasional at the next general election if tough action is not taken to hold owners of blogs accountable.
This conclusion was reached during a meeting last week involving several Cabinet ministers and senior government officials, including Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Government officials noted that some 400,000 new voters are registered each year. Assuming that the next polls are in five years, there would be two million new voters the next time the BN seeks a fresh mandate. A large chunk of these two million voters are likely to obtain their news and information from websites and blogs, and not from the mainstream media.
Several ministers noted that if the government followed its current policy of allowing allegations by bloggers to go unchallenged, this would create the perception that the information being posted is accurate.
"There is a growing consensus in government that laws should be used to take action against those who defame and spread disinformation.
"If not, we are going to have a situation where everyone will be free to make all sorts of allegations with no downside at all. There is a fear that the trust level with BN would be very low if nothing is done, '' said a senior government official familiar with details of the meeting.
The prevailing mood in the government against the alternative media is one of frustration. After decades of being able to control newspapers and television stations through a raft of legislation, government officials and politicians are finding that their tools are useless in setting boundaries for new media.
Source: Malaysian Insider
So, let's support the govt and praise them even when they do wrong; after all, they are the government which we had elected.