Malaysiakini reported that Jeff Ooi, probably Malaysia's best known blogger whose postings focussed on issues of public governance, consumer affairs and the media, has had his blog sabotaged by what is known as distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. That’s when several computers working in concert ‘swarmed’ the targeted blog and jammed up access for other (normal) users – hence the term distributed denial-of-service.
Jeff has closed his Screenshots blogsite for 72 hours to allow IT experts to investigate and address the problem.
Obviously someone doesn’t like him or what he has been posting. Coincidentally someone reported him to the police for using his blog Screenshots to instigate racial hatred. Some of Jeff’s postings have struck hard at certain Malaysian personalities and companies, and in the Malaysian blogosphere it’s a well known story that Jeff has an ongoing vendetta with a NST person. I can't provide any informed background to this feud as I am a Johnny-come-lately on the blogging scene.
However, while I don’t always buy Jeff’s views or stand, I disagree with the allegation of his blog inciting racial hatred. In fact, if anything, Jeff has demonstrated he's a proud Malaysian.
Apart from his postings, Jeff as a blog-moderator can be abrasive at times but when a blogger like him has hundreds and even thousands of hits per day with wide ranging comments, he has to be firm and at times curt. He had been in trouble before for a visitor's comment on his blog, known among Malaysian bloggers as the 'oil & water' saga, where the comment was deliberately misinterpreted by Jeff's opponents as insulting to Islam. While the target had been Jeff of course, the poor visitor became the eventual prey.
Look, there’s no denying every blogger has a certain barrow - political, social, cultural, religious, special interest, etc - to push, and how he does it depends on his methodology, character or philosophy. Some use a topic to tease, others to elicit, a few to confront, one or two to promote or uphold, and the odd bloke or lassie who doesn’t care a stuff about visitor participation.
But on issues of public governance, consumer affairs and the performance and conduct of the media, the postings can invariably be offensive to some. Jeff does have enemies.
The best way to disagree with a blogger's views, if one feels strongly about it, is to engage it in intellectual sparring by posting one's comments on the blog. If the blogger employs the owner’s prerogative to block out one’s responding comments, then create one’s own blog to air one's own views or launch opposing views.
In this respect I have also noted that a new blog has just come up 4 days ago, whose postings seem to be taking sarcastic pot shots at Jeff. Not so strangely it called itself Potshots with the anonymous blogger flippantly named Daft Oi.
Its postings obviously have one aim - to undermine Jeff’s credibility. I must say it’s rather well written with a cheeky flair, though it's just a one-issue blog. Now, this seems to be a more intellectual approach than the DDoS.
I frown on bully boys’ tactics which seem to be what the DDoS or the police report on Jeff have been. I hope Jeff can sort out those attacks and look forward to reading his worldviews soon. And I'll continue to read Potshots also, and to see how it is prepared to engage Jeff in intellectual debate, and jaga [maintain] its standards.