Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Now, the dirty war enters blogdom

News Courtesy Expessbuzz
First Published : 05 May 2010 05:12:00 AM IST

Politics - the omnipotent presence - has conquered the blogosphere too: where we thought ideas mattered and creativity reigned.In a bizarre instance, the Trivandrum Bloggers Group, which has more than 150 members, is witnessing a warfare - a decayed version of Congress-CPM fight- that has almost taken the matters to the Kerala Police’s cyber cell.Already eight bloggers have been thrown out of the group by the administrator (who is the owner of the group as per Google rules) and the admin himself claims to have resigned his role and handed over the seat to an ‘unknown’ admin. The thrown-aways are learnt to have met and decided to move the cyber cell against the admin. Things unheard of before.A lens eye would reveal politics as the villain. The discord had actually stemmed out of the Lavalin issue, grown with the fanfare that Tharoor won in the group and branched out with every Tharoor-Pinarayi-posts.The latest fight had, however, begun with a member, Pratheesh, using foul language against Rahul Gandhi and the Prime Minister while referring to the phone tapping issue. The admin, S.Chandrasekharan Nair (Kerala Farmer) reprimanded him, but things only turned worse and ended with the admin ousting Pratheesh and Riyad (who had supported Pratheesh in his arguments).The group suddenly turned alive. The discussion thread grew long with members, many of whom had been passive till then, joining the fray. At the end of the discussions, the group saw seven others too being thrown out. Interestingly, four of them are journalists. Varun Ramesh, Sebin, Anu Warrier, Antony Boban, Mayoora, Anandan and Santhosh Kumar were the bloggers ousted. Santhosh was, however, taken back later.‘’It is the bossy attitude of the admin which has resulted in the split. You may be young or old and pursuing different jobs, but in the blogosphere, what matters is your opinion. We are not talking about individuals, instead we argue on concepts and ideas. A group of individuals cannot dictate the general opinion of a group, which is what has happened here,’’ says T C Rajesh, a returnee to the group after he resigned a couple of months before alleging negative ambience in the group.Chandrakumar (blogger name Uncle), who often dons the role of trouble-shooter in times of dispute, says: ‘’It is basically a matter of intolerance. Political divides must not be reflected in a group, but sadly, it has dominated the group.’’ He has stopped playing the mediator.The group, which was started three years ago, strains to remember a healthy discussion that has happened for sometime now. Pratheesh, allegedly a staunch Pinarayi-fan, had snatched the issue to combat Kerala Farmer, a loyal Tharoor-fan, going by the comments of many bloggers. Posts supporting Tharoor were pouring in during the IPL controversy and Tharoor himself had expressed his gratitude to the group for supporting him. That, obviously, was indigestible to CPM-fellow travellers in the group. With many Left-loyalists taking sides of the ousted members, the split was only natural.‘’Democracy has taken a new meaning in the group- keep your mouth shut. The negative vibes emanating from several bloggers are killing the spirit of blogging,’’ says a blogger. It, however, cannot be brushed away that 15 new members have joined the group recently.Latest, the rebels met and are toying with the idea of taking the matter to the cyber cell. On the other hand, the admin says problems have ended. ‘’I only followed the Google laws which says admin is the owner of the group. True, I am a Tharoor supporter. That’s because I value the education and experience of a leader who has had international exposure,’’ he says.The new admin, however, is unknown to the group. ‘’There is a tendency to irritate the admin and create problems. So, for the time being, admin is better left unidentified,’’ Kerala Farmer says.Opposition group points out that this exactly is the authoritarian attitude that they are against. It only remains to be seen if another will be formed by the rebels or whether they decide to merge once again.


Calicocentric കാലിക്കോസെന്‍ട്രിക് said...

Express page didn't accept my comment. Maybe it was too long for a comment. The journalist's email account is unknown to the paper's mail server. So I thought I would put this here.
"Politics - the omnipotent presence - has conquered the blogosphere too: where we thought ideas mattered and creativity reigned."
That's the naivest thing I heard about blogs. Politics, nationalism, fanaticism etc are the impelling motives of the majority of the bloggers. This is true outside and inside Kerala. Wikipedia has been reeling under pressure of concerted attacks from vested interest groups ganging up in blogosphere for several years now. I have heard some Wikipedians calling these people blog warriors. The Hindutva brigade that used to be very active on Wikipedia rallied around and shared their ideas and action plans on a few websites like
In Malayalam blogosphere, the Islamist bloggers' presence is too dominant, though they are more focused on teaching their religion and defending it in their own ways than showing intolerance and advocating violence. CPM's mass organisations openly exhort their supporters to use blog as a means of defending the party line and the supporters loyal to their masters pounce on opposing views with acrimonious language. A senior journalist BRP Bhaskar who blogs both in Malayalam and English is often their target of concerted attack whenever his postings is critical of CPI(M).
And very interestingly, a few Kerala bloggers recently did a major expose of a pseudo scientist who advocated all sorts of crackpot theories of Sanatana dharma, something unheard of even in the mainstream media.

keralafarmer said...

Thanks Calicocentric കാലിക്കോസെന്‍ട്രിക്,
ഗൂഗിള്‍ ഗ്രൂപ്പിന്റെ അഡ്മിന്റെ അധികാരത്തെ ചോദ്യം ചെയ്യലും, വിചാരണക്ക് വിധേയനാക്കലും കാരണം പല അംഗങ്ങളെയും നീക്കം ചെയ്തും സമര്‍ത്ഥരായ അംഗങ്ങളെ ഉള്‍പ്പെടുത്തിയും ഒരു നവീകരണം വേണ്ടിവന്നു. സമാന ചിന്താഗതിക്കാരായ ബ്ലോഗര്‍മാരുടെ കൂട്ടായ്മ എന്ന ലക്ഷ്യം തമ്മില്‍ത്തല്ലലല്ല മറിച്ച് വിശകലനങ്ങളും വിമര്‍ശനങ്ങളും ജന നന്മ ലക്ഷ്യമാക്കിയും മുന്നേറുക എന്നതുതന്നെ.

Calicocentric കാലിക്കോസെന്‍ട്രിക് said...

"ഗൂഗിള്‍ ഗ്രൂപ്പിന്റെ അഡ്മിന്റെ അധികാരത്തെ ചോദ്യം ചെയ്യലും, വിചാരണക്ക് വിധേയനാക്കലും കാരണം"
പ്രശ്നമെന്താണെന്നോ പക്ഷങ്ങളേതെന്നോ അറിയില്ല. പക്ഷേ, മുകളിലുദ്ധരിച്ച പ്രസ്താവനയില്‍ പ്രശ്നമുണ്ട്. അഡ്മിന് എന്ത് അധികാരം? ചോദ്യം ചെയ്യാന്‍ പാടില്ലാത്ത അധികാരമോ? വ്യക്തിഹത്യയോ മറ്റോ നടത്തുമ്പോഴല്ലാതെ അഡ്മിന് ഒരധികാരവും പാലിക്കാനില്ല. വിചാരണ എന്തായാലും വേണ്ടതുതന്നെ.

"പല അംഗങ്ങളെയും നീക്കം ചെയ്തും സമര്‍ത്ഥരായ അംഗങ്ങളെ ഉള്‍പ്പെടുത്തിയും ഒരു നവീകരണം"
എന്നു പറയുന്നത് അതിലും വലിയ പ്രശ്നമാണ്.
ഇതില്‍ ആരൊക്കെയോ സൈബര്‍ക്രൈം സെല്ലിനു പരാതികൊടുക്കുമെന്നൊക്കെ ആ വാര്‍ത്തയില്‍ കണ്ടു. ലേശം ബാലിശമായി തോന്നുകയും ചെയ്തു.

keralafarmer said...

Group Owner's Rights and Responsibilities. Group Owners have additional capabilities and responsibilities in regard to the members and Content of a Group. The Owner of a Group decides whether a Group is restricted to certain members or accessible to the public generally, and the Owner may change the access to the Group at any time. In restricted Groups, the Owner decides who may be a member of the Group and can access and change the membership list in his or her sole discretion. A Group Owner may, at any time, transfer his or her ownership of a group to another Google Groups user. In regard to Content, a Group Owner shall be responsible for the maintenance and monitoring of the Content in the Group, including deleting any Group, Content or archived Content at any time and in his or her discretion.

Antony said...

Frankly ! I started following this blog because it pertains to Trivandrum. Hey, there are so many things a group could do to improve the quality of life in Our City. I hope the Admin and other core members strictly discourage such practices.

Calicocentric കാലിക്കോസെന്‍ട്രിക് said...

Talking about foul language that politicians arguably deserve, it is a plain fact that you can call anybody names in Kerala politics and won't have to answer for that with the exception of the current CPI(M) state secretary and his entourage.
In fact, I had castigated a so-called poet and CPI(M) stooge who runs and edits a literary webzine called Thanal Online for his unscrupulously abusive and stupidly erroneous accusations against Manmohan Singh (a PM I don't like at all). He happens to be Calicut University's syndicate member too. The criminal libel he committed was so blatant that If he were not a CPM stooge he would have landed in jail.