Thursday, 17 January 2008

Some issues

Citizen reporting and bridge blogging are actually quite the same work load. In reporting perhaps we do need to tackle current issues and hard news, but the objectivity and presentation clearness should really be taken into account for both citizen reporting and bridge blogging. It is really different with having an offline personal diary.

I did a piece of writing about Soeharto, the former Indonesian president who is now lying sick in the hospital. I'm trying to write about "forgiveness". I think as a human being it is good to forgive, but as a citizen perhaps we do need to seek for the law settlement in order to start respecting the law as the base of a democratic country. A fellow blogger (not an Indonesian friend)was helping me editing it and I found out that I might get some misinterpretation from people who do not know about Indonesia. I need to be able to present short but clear explanation to my views in written, I hope I could rephrase the document before uploading it here (or perhaps I won't up load it online). Background information is also very important on an article that would be presented for readers. In my personal diary (offline) I feel free to write any note because I'll be the only reader.

I could also get misinterpretation from my English composition. There are times when editors or readers could misunderstood some words or sentences and get the wrong ideas of my message. So writing an online diary (blog) and report (cit-J) in English should be handled cautiously, having a helping friend to show us how readers will see it is really helpful. That is why editorial for international citizen journalism website can play a very important role in developing the quality of citizen reporting.

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It is also important to note that translating a language is not only a translation in literary speaking, but there is also a close relation with its cultural background. Indonesian national language is my mother tongue. I've also been speaking the Makasarese dialect in my parents' home. So English language is actually the third language that came into my life. I studied German language for three years in my Senior High School, but it seems that the French language that I had been learning in the French Cultural Center(CCF)is more fascinating to me. Why? Because the teachers in CCF taught me the language in a package with the culture.

Naturally, I think writing in Indonesian language is easier than writing in English. Yet, some friends said that my articles in English have nicer composition than my article in Indonesian language. Are they?! Perhaps it is because I use to read local newspapers, but I'm not use to read English daily (When I was still subscribing to the Jakarta Post-JP- I found most of their news similar to the daily Kompas. Now JP has changed). I am more accustomed to the Readers' Digest in English language. That is probably how I got my "formal" language in my Indonesian articles and a better choice of words for my English articles.

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I found the news from a printed daily Kompas about the Last Post from a US' blogger who died in Iraq. I'd like to note Andrew Olmsted's remark "But for those who knew me and feel this pain, I think it's a good thing to realize that this pain has been felt by thousands and thousands (probably millions, actually) of other people all over the world. That is part of the cost of war, any war, no matter how justified."

Those who suffer the most in the war were usually the innocent and vulnerable citizens, those who can only dream to have a normal life to enjoy the short term period of living on the earth. Physical war and Psychological war are both killing people. The second can also be killing spirits, and it is even worse than death. Racism and religious militancy are things that I consider grouped into psychological war.

1 comment:

m lim said...

thanks for sharing this.... indeed writing as a citizen journalist and/or bridge blogger is not an easy task. i applaud you for doing this.

your English writing is very good. i think Indonesians mostly aren't used to express in writing and our readings in Indonesian aren't good quality reading (hard to find ones), that perhaps explains why while it's easy to write in Indonesia it's hard to write high-quality Indonesian article.