Monday, 24 August 2009

In the Murky Depths of Singapore’s Blogosphere

My first snorkelling experience exposed me to the abundance of life in the sea. My recent experiences in the 'World of Blogging' have been just as revealing.
The profusion of life in Singapore's 'underwater internet world' is fascinating.

Like the underwater marine world, there are all sorts of fascinating life forms in this particular universe. One can find sharks, whales, pretty, purple, yellow and just boring old 'catch of the day' fish swimming around.
Some can be seen only at certain times of day and near their favourite sites. Others trawl the web almost randomly. Some lurk in disguise. Many are dangerous, more are friendly but all have one thing in common.
Take these creatures out of their underwater world and they will quickly perish. Like a fish out of water.
The ocean is a vast place and a sense of anonymity can be strangely comforting to some. They communicate freely and without any regard for normal rules of social interaction.
When you operate under a pen name then etiquette suddenly becomes optional.
Racist and ethnic slurs are commonplace. Protesting and 'anti-establishment' behaviour is worn as a badge of courage. Even when they are silly and ridiculous comments.

We all want Singapore to be a better place. There are millions of opinions on how to improve life in the city. Debates are about issues and not personalities.

Although often anonymous, internet communication still requires respect for traditional rules of etiquette

Young idealists beware. Everything is recorded on the internet. Nothing is private anymore. Choose your words carefully or you could land yourself in trouble, if not today then maybe tomorrow.
The blogosphere and the underwater world is a treacherous place.
You can drown in its depths or be eaten up by the many predators loitering around each corner. And, trust me, there are many predators hanging about.
For netizens, some basic self-regulation today is better than the implementation of a formal licensing regime in the future.
If chewing gum can be regulated then so can blogging. Don't assume today is any guide to tomorrow.

No comments:

Post a Comment