In 2006, in a political meeting, I mentioned the importance of blogs and internet. The person in charge smiled and said that nobody read blogs but bloggers themselves. When I mentioned facebook, he looked at me like I was from Mars…( At that time, facebook had just been started — I was one of the earliest into facebook in 2006, when most people then were using friendster).
308 of course showed that the power of the net cannot be underestimated.
After 308, one of the reforms that most component parties adopted is to concentrate on internet. Most of these political parties have fortified their cyber departments, and invested money and personnel into these departments. As an example, in the component party Gerakan, the think tank Sedar is now fortified with many staff, many of them are ex-journalists, ready to fight the cyber war.
Is this what reform is about?
To fight cyber wars and win opinions, you need soldiers but you also need to have real bullets. You cannot have empty shells (so called blank bullets), the inside of which contain no gun powder. You need real bullets with gun powder inside the bullets.
That is to say, to fight the internet war, you need to have ethics, moral , fairness, justice and good governance on your side.
Without that, you can have thousands of soldiers and still cannot win the cyber war. Without righteousness on your side, any attempt at fighting cyber war will be like fighting war without real bullets– only empty bullet shells.
If you are a crook and you are corrupted, no matter how much you mention in you website that your are clean and respectable, people will simply not buy your statement and people will simply not believe you.
Even if all the cyber troopers belonging to a party say that the party advocates multiracialism and a fair and just society, but the party itself is supporting a bigger party which is advocating race based discrimination and policy, no matter how colourful and beautiful is your website, nobody would believe and trust you.
You must walk the talk to be credible, and internet world is no different: you must walk the talk!
You can have the best tank in the world but without real bullets and shells, your tank will be a toothless tiger.
If you are advocating raced based policy, no matter how you pretend in the net that you are for all races, you are for ‘one this’ and ‘one that” you will not win the war.
The internet people are smart and they will not believe you.
That is the essence of fighting any war. If your cause is righteous, half the war is already won, since most people will fight the war for you, even those who do not know you personally. If your cause is unjust and corrupt, most people , even your own friends, will abandon you and will be reluctant to help you.
Recently in CHina, , a waitress killed an important government official when the official tried to rape her. The whole internet community is up to support her, as she is seen to be a heroine and because of that and public pressure, , she was acquitted. Certain media attribute her release to the internet community’s support of her.( read the story here)
But the fact is that if she is not the righteous one, she would not get the support of the internet community and she probably would have to be sentenced to death.
The internet community is supportive of her because she is in the right.
That is precisely what fighting an internet war is about. You need to be right to win public support , and no amount of rhetoric is going to help win the heart of the people.