How should we judge a government?

In Malaysia, if you don't watch television or read newspapers, you are uninformed; but if you do, you are misinformed!

"If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing." - Malcolm X

Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience - Mark Twain

Why we should be against censorship in a court of law: Publicity is the very soul of justice … it keeps the judge himself, while trying, under trial. - Jeremy Bentham

"Our government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no
responsibility at the other. " - Ronald Reagan

Government fed by the people

Government fed by the people

Career options

Career options
I suggest government... because nobody has ever been caught.

Corruption so prevalent it affects English language?

Corruption so prevalent it affects English language?
Corruption is so prevalent it affects English language?

When there's too much dirt...

When there's too much dirt...
We need better tools... to cover up mega corruptions.

Prevent bullying now!

Prevent bullying now!
If you're not going to speak up, how is the world supposed to know you exist? “Orang boleh pandai setinggi langit, tapi selama ia tidak menulis, ia akan hilang di dalam masyarakat dan dari sejarah.” - Ananta Prameodya Toer (Your intellect may soar to the sky but if you do not write, you will be lost from society and to history.)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

A bit on obituary notices

Despite careful consultation with the respective families and attention to detail in drafting the obituary notices, in English and Chinese, for publication in The Star and Sin Chew Jit Poh respectively, there were a number of mistakes in the obituary notices of my late mother-in-law.

This is a common problem because of the confusion during funeral wake and the best placed advertisements were usually either prepared before hand or by private secretaries in charge. These well prepared and coordinated advertisements are obvious, especially where the obituary notice and condolence messages are published on the same day.

Delay is often caused by difficulty in confirming the spelling of names, and especially the correct Chinese characters if placed in Chinese newspapers. Here, it depends on the decision whether timely advertisement or perfection is more important.

I think the editors of the advertisement department should have excellent examples with which to help advertisers. This is especially so in terms of layout. Having seen the first draft using an exercise book which was later transcribed onto the computer for easy reference and checking before confirmation of final draft, I think the old fashion way of using a big blank piece of paper (eg. mahjong paper) would have avoided the mistakes relating to layout. The notebook's screen is small and not everybody is comfortable using it, having to scroll up and down to get the big picture.

The Chinese notice in Sin Chew Jit Poh was poor in layout and caused confusion when relating the children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

In The Star's notice, only some of the great grandchildren were not placed on the same line as their respective families. It would certainly help if editors could take the initiative to check for obvious errors (eg. based on surnames) and confirm with advertiser before publishing.

The following were mistakes in preparation, nothing to do with the editors. For eg. Dr Lee was annoyed when she found out that her prefix 'Dr' was omitted, whereas her husband's and the next generation's doctors had theirs.

Spelling mistakes: Siew Chin was unhappy to note her sons' 'Yeong' was spelt as 'Yeung' and 'Shaun' spelt as 'Shawn'!

Dorothy's 'Pooi' was spelt as 'Pui' and this was despite her text to god mother-in-law  on the spelling. In this case, it was mother-in-law who mispelt it while the father-in-law failed to spot it, and presumably god mother-in-law assumed it was correct. However, I managed to correct Shane's to 'Yue', which was mispelt by grandma as 'Yu'.

As is common with today's borderless world, with family members living all over the world, out of 7 children, one daughter-in-law in Sydney could not be present; out of 22 grandchildren, only 10 were present; and out of 5 great grandchildren, only 1 was present at the funeral!

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