Saturday, June 30, 2007

Blog ennui

Malaysia has an emerging blog community. Lately some bloggers have dealt with religious topics and this nation being a multireligious and multicultural society, the government has been concerned. Apparently publishing insulting comments about race and religion is against certain provisions of the Internal Security Act.

Malaysians say that bloggers will test the free speech credentials of the incumbent Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi who upon his election a few years back promised to be more moderate and less confrontational than his sometimes controversial predecessor, Dr Mahathir Mohammed.

Well my Malaysian friends say that the blog community in Malaysia is far from boring. Malaysia has developed advanced IT infrastructure in the last decade or so (thanks to Dr Mahathir) and society seems to have used this to test the limits of their liberties.

And in killing time I read some products of the Malaysian blogosphere. Some blogs are witty. English blogs have some words particular to Malaysia. And in Malaysia English competency has become a major issue especially in getting jobs.

In liberty-full Republic of the Philippines, we see and read blogs popping out of the net. Some are worth a read and some a big bore. I suppose the blog as a literary genre still has a lot of evolving to go. But there is a what if? If Rizal and del Pilar were alive today would they blog? When Rizal and del Pilar were writing they were hewing to a literary genre. I suppose that satire would make good blog material.

Here is the letdown. A lot of blogs are plainly boring. Even this one may be at times. But the boring blogs are mere reportage of events with pictures of faces, parties and so on, like an electronic version of the society pages. But that can be material for a Rizalesque satire. What if a blogger comes up with a blog version of Chapter 1 of the Noli Me Tangere? I wonder who could be the blogosphere's Padre Damaso?

And the language debate can be the main course and not the tinolang manok!

Political blogs? I think we have too much political blogs, with the same characters posting replies. That makes it really really boring.

Blog ennui, at the airport or anywhere. Your weakness is mine too.

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