First Meeting of All-Blogs Pro-Tem Committee
It rained cats and dogs last evening and only tapered off by about 9.30pm. You'd think that people would use that as an excuse to be fashionably late for any function. And Malaysian time-keeping is notorious, even in this day and age of the 21st century.
But, delightfully, no. Except for Elizabeth Wong who was involved in the Machap by-election, everyone was there on time, give or take a few minutes. Emy Husni and Soon Li Tsin could not make it due to some pressing engagement.
And the Pro-Tem commitee of Malaysia's first alliance of bloggers - National Alliance of Bloggers or All-Blogs - conducted its first meeting at the borrowed venue of the National Press Club in Kuala Lumpur.
Thank You, NPC for consenting to allow us to use the premises.
Present were (president) Ahirudin Attan AKA Rocky, (vice-president) Jeff Ooi, (secretary) Nuraina Samad, (treasurer) Tony Yew and committee members: Bernard Khoo, Patrick Teoh, Syed Azidi Syed Abdul Aziz, Syed Jamal Al-Idrus, Elizabeth Wong, Rajahram Ramalingam and, Annuratha K.
Here's what the committee decided on:
* the alliance to be called All-Blogs for short,
* Elizabeth to head a sub-committee on drafting the constitution,
* Elizabeth to incorporate the issue of membership in her sub-committee, with Syed Jamal to
assist in this,
* a logo to be designed and conceptualised with Syed Azidi tasked to work on it,
* Bernard to look into the legalities in setting up welfare fund under All-Blogs, and
* Jeff to look into training and related programmes for bloggers.
There was a lot of discussion and debate, particularly on a key issue -- membership. We are hopeful that subsequent meetings will iron out some contentious and crucial bits.
We are confident that Elizabeth's wide experience in this area will be of immense help.
The committee also discussed the need to have a suitable place for All-Blogs. We are on the look-out for one. Of course, mindful of the fact that we are starting at zero-kitty.
Next meeting has been scheduled for April 27.
(There was a small farewell do after the meeting for Syed Azidi, otherwise known as Sheih of Kickdefella who will be leaving for Kelantan tomorrow (Saturday, April 14) to begin a new job with the Kelantan government as corporate communications officer.)
We're really in uncharted waters, here. The alliance, by its very nature given the diverse composition of its members and what they represent, is clearly and undoubtedly unique.
A body of cyberspace writers - a huger than huge mass of the named and the nicknamed - evokes a daunting picture.
There will certainly be some hiccups, many rough edges. And we have not even gone over the first hurdle yet -- registration.
We can all take a bet on how long the process will be, mindful of the fact the bloggers in this here country, are not the flavour of the day with the powers-that-be.
The formation of the alliance is a starting point in the process of engagement (and perhaps, even embrace, you think?) with the detractors and critics (read: government/authorities/ignoramus) of blogosphere.
It cannot be denied that its formation was triggered by the lawsuits against our brothers, Rocky and Jeff by a media giant and its key executives.
But All-Blogs is, first and foremost, committed to promote blogging and, protect bloggers.
So, we'll go where the waters take us, which in time, will be charted.