View Full Version : Oon Yeoh starts Malaysia's first weblog in Malaysiakini

02-01-2003, 09:50 PM
7:26pm Thu Jan 2nd, 2003

<FONT SIZE="+1">Malaysiakini launches nation’s first online media weblog</FONT>

<img src="http://www.malaysiakini.com/images/transitions.gif" align="left"> Online newspaper malaysiakini today launched a daily <a href="http://www.malaysiakini.com/transitions/index.htm"target="new">weblog</a> — considered the first of its kind in the country — to be penned by freelance writer Oon Yeoh.

Yeoh, 34, a journalist who had worked for Japan-based international news organisations Kyodo News and Nikkei and Thailand-based newspaper Bangkok Post, is the first individual invited by malaysiakini to do a weblog.

“I’ve often described weblogs [or blogs, as they are commonly referred to] as running commentaries, with embedded links to external articles, about a particular topic area,” said Yeoh, who was most recently the associate editor of financial weekly The Edge in Singapore.

“My friend Dan Gillmor, the tech columnist for the San Jose Mercury News [in California, US] describes blogs this way: Weblogs are a unique form of journalism, native to the Net. They combine hyperlinks to other material and personal observations.”

According to Yeoh, it took a while for the established media in the United States to accept blogs, and initially it was the preserve of techies.

“Today, blogs have gone mainstream, and almost every established media company in the US has an official blog. MSNBC, the world’s most popular news site has it. So does the online versions of Newsweek, the Wall Street Journal, and of course, the Mercury News [which allowed Dan to start his blog in October, 1999],” he said.

With the weblog, malaysiakini continues to be a pioneer in online journalism.

“Back in 1999, malaysiakini was the first purely Internet-based newspaper. But we have been following the print model closely till now. The weblog is our first attempt to adopt new forms of online journalism,” said the website’s chief executive officer Premesh Chandran.

The weblog will be available to malaysiakini readers for free.

Highly opinionated, sarcastic

Blogs usually contain highly opinionated, funny, and even sarcastic commentary on the latest news.

“They are also very informal, containing stuff that would not normally make it to print. It’s no surprise that none of the mainstream media companies in Malaysia or Singapore has started a blog,” said Yeoh.

Yeoh, who is currently working on a book about emerging technologies and their impact on society, also writes a weekly column on information technology for The Edge.

“I was delighted when malaysiakini asked me to start a blog for its website,” said Yeoh. “My blog is called ‘Transitions’, and as its name implies, it’s about Malaysia as a country in transition, in terms of politics, economics and IT.”

Premesh said that Yeoh’s take on the country’s conversion into a knowledge economy will enhance malaysiakini’s independent coverage of current affairs.

“We strongly believe that Malaysians will enjoy following Yeoh’s weblog. There will be more weblogs on burning issues in the near future,” added Premesh.

Yeoh said he plans to update the blog at least once a day, and keep it both entertaining and informative for malaysiakini readers.

Given that ‘Transitions’ can be uploaded at any time of the day, readers will be advised on the latest updates of Yeoh’s blog in the scrolling text just above the weblog’s link in malaysiakini’s front page.


03-01-2003, 06:27 AM
<font size="+1">Who is Oon Yeoh?</font>

Oon Yeoh is a freelance writer who has covered Malaysian
current affairs for various international news organisations
including Kyodo News, Nikkei and the Bangkok Post.

Most recently he was an associate editor at The Edge Singapore.
He's currently working on a book about emerging technologies
and their impact on society.