Government protests Blogger's Column

mr. brown, A popular Singapore blogger had written a column in a newspaper talking about the rising cost of living. A spokesperson from the government responded in the same newspaper

mr brown's views on all these issues distort the truth. They are polemics dressed up as analysis, blaming the Government for all that he is unhappy with. He offers no alternatives or solutions. His piece is calculated to encourage cynicism and despondency, which can only make things worse, not better, for those he professes to sympathise with

Singaporeangle feels that the tone of reply could have been softer

Even if the intention was not, the perception from the reply is that the government is less willing to receive feedback, especially it they are not positive. We should ideally offer constructive criticism and alternatives for issues raised, but it may be challenging for ordinary citizens, even journalist such as Mr. Brown, who often does not have sufficient information to always do so.

The protest letter also stated

If a columnist presents himself as a non-political observer, while exploiting his access to the mass media to undermine the Government's standing with the electorate, then he is no longer a constructive critic, but a partisan player in politics.

Ridzal questions this claim that mr. brown is exploiting his access to the mainstream media

mr brown’s column is published in the Voices section of the newspaper, a section that is dedicated to the expression of the opinions, thoughts and concerns of its columnists, as well as its readers who, should they choose to write in to the newspaper, have as much access to the mass media as mr brown. Therefore, I do not see how mr brown could be seen to have exploited his position as a columnist to sway opinion one way or another towards the Government.

Blogger Heavenly Sword thinks that the officials misunderstood Mr. Brown's column and tries to interpret what mr brown was really talking about.

The response from MICA, nonetheless, did not surprise me. (You mean you're surprised?) :) I can see where it's coming from, and I respectfully acknowledge what it's saying. But the purpose of this short post has been to argue that MICA's interpretation of Mr Brown's original article is wrong, hence triggering an overly harsh reply to an actually-innocent Singaporean.

Singapore's blogosphere exploded with comments and support for the blogger including this tribute video hacked out of a Hong Kong movie.

Start the conversation

Authors, please log in »


  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.

Receive great stories from around the world directly in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the best of Global Voices!

Submitted addresses will be confirmed by email, and used only to keep you up to date about Global Voices and our mission. See our Privacy Policy for details.

Newsletter powered by Mailchimp (Privacy Policy and Terms).

* = required field
Email Frequency

No thanks, show me the site