Thursday, November 12, 2015


By Mansor Puteh

It is so nice and comfortable to be abroad especially in the countries in the west where everything is in order and in a peaceful state, with no litter everywhere.

And everybody is disciplined. Driving around is also easy and we can stop and get direction from anyone who will take the trouble to check for it in their phone, as what I discovered when I was in Washington DC last year and wanted to go to the Malaysian Embassy.

The guy checked for the map in his phone and told me to walk further up and then turned to the right and on to get to where I wanted to go to.

But when I got to the Malaysian Embassy the guard refused me entry into the premises saying I would need an appointment to enter the embassy building.

This was the first time I was told that. I have been to forty countries and not once I was told to get an appointment before I can enter any Malaysian embassy.

I walked away and then decided to turn back to ask the guard for the phone number of the embassy. Then some officials from the embassy spoke with me through the intercom and invited me inside the building and showed me around.

It turned out that one of them was someone who I had known in Kuala Lumpur before.

Malaysians may have everything including the Facebook and other modern public amenities but do they know how best to use them without treating them?

And nowhere in the world where the Facebook Curse as I call it has affected the judgment of the people other than in Malaysia.

Even in America where the Facebook first emerged the people have not used it in ways that Malaysians have discovered, using it for the wrong reasons.

But alas those who misuse Facebook and are suffering from the Facebook Curse are mostly those who are not so well-educated. This can be see in the way how they write.

They like to pass judgment on people and appoint themselves as the moral guardian of society without them informing everybody their background in law.

They can only write one or two paragraphs in simple Melayu or English and these can never be used by scholars or researchers other than by psychologists or sociologists to determine the state of mind of the persons concerned.

In the end, it may be just a psychological matter that they are exposing to the others on their state of mind than on their politics.

How many of them have thought they had been empowered because they have the social media network otherwise known as the Face book to help them free themselves of any inhibitions and fears?

And most of them are the retired so they think they can be brash as well as crude as well as vulgar since they know and think that they are not within the reach of the law.   

And it seems that the nature of some Malaysians is to use this opportunity to express themselves in the most crash and uncreative ways; they think by doing so they are expanding on their intellectualism.

They are not. They had all felt limp with the new medium that had allowed them to be careless and also crude. They have become petty judges of the morals of the others.

The target of their scorn are those who they can never come close in everyday life, but who they can only see and watch from the far distance.

When they are in the company of these personalities they always feel limp.

But such opportunities do not avail themselves to those who cannot condign themselves to partake in the social activities of those political entities.

Some had voted against them. But the many others had voted them into office.

But the few who are disgruntled with them for having hogged the media and public for so long that the only left for them to use is the FB and other internet portals who are more than happy to provide them the space even when they write things that do not make sense and hiding behind pseudonyms, whose copies if they were sent to the mainstream newspapers would consigned to the dustbin or deleted.

Unusual scandals and controversies are thus created from thin air. And the most pungent ones are those that had lend credence simply because they had originated from sources in America, who they always tended to look up to, despite them not having much credibility, with the type of journalism they have that does not require scrutiny.

And from what I can see, from the rough research that I had conducted, I notice that those who enjoy laughing at the others and also criticizing them are those who are groupies.

They are not individuals who dares to stand on their own but who have to follow someone or somebody, so what they write are most those that sound similar with what had been written by the others before them.

And herein lies the problem with them, that when the truth is shown before their faces, they refuse to balk; on the contrary they continue to stiffen and adopt an even more vulgar position and not feel guilty for having said nasty things about some others.

The FB Curse cannot be curbed or cured simply by condemning the instigators of the initial controversies of scandals, but given time they will realize their own follies. 

Malaysians can be described as suffering from the Facebook Curse. They have no comparison to those in the other countries especially the developed ones where they had experienced being allowed to express themselves.

But alas they do so in more creative and intellectual pursuits.

The Facebook Curse often affects those who are less intellectually and academically inclined, to say the least because educated people have other avenues while those who are not so inclined only have their Facebook accounts to vent their emotions, with none of them being able to further expand on their thoughts and ideas in a real open public forum.

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