Twitter, Yasmin Ahmad and English

Edit: This is a rather fitting 4,000th post on this blog (if my id is correct). Talking about Social Media on a blog. :P

Around 4.20pm, Sochews tweeted on my timeline that Yasmin Ahmad may have passed away. This was quickly followed by tweets and flurries as everyone tried to verify the news.

As it happened in Michael Jackson and the infamous Death-Roll (as Asohan admitted), details emerged about 1 hour after the initial tweet. Somewhere around 3pm, she had collapsed during a meeting with Media Prima and had been rushed to a hospital. She had passed out, not passed away.

This was then confirmed by The Star (tipped off no doubt by Twitter), but even before that, the Twitter effect had begun. Yasmin Ahmad became a trending topic somewhere around 5.05pm, with most messages, I’m proud to say, being messages of hope, praying for her to get better. She’s now the no 1 trending topic (for the next hour or so I think, at least till 6.30pm).

An interesting side discussion came out of speculation that the person who originally tweeted it or the person who had sent the message that Yasmin Ahmad may have passed away probably got confused between “passed out” and “passed away.” If this is true, then it merely underscores just how far the English standards in Malaysia have fallen.

It’s funny how bad news makes us jump.

Also, I’m sorry, but this is unfortunately true. Makes me laugh and cry to be Malaysian (excuse me, English is MY FIRST TONGUE!)

4 Responses

  1. Ben Israel July 23, 2009 / 6:08 PM

    Nice post.

    I guess this is the danger of Twitter and the unverified news/news source process. At least this something that can be verified (in the end). What about issues that cannot be verified or is harder to qualify, e.g. support for the Iran movement.

    Most people will just go with what the majority says (and turn green) without ensuring that news is accurate, and more importantly it is something that is in line with what they believe.

    Hopefully, we learn from our mistakes. :)

    BTW, congratulations on the 4,000th post. Quite a feat of endurance i must say. Cheers.

    • Naoko Kensaku July 24, 2009 / 10:06 PM

      Hahaha, thanks for the congrats. :)

      I actually like this, because I can see how people move to find out about what’s happening, about how quickly the myths are debunked, and how quickly rumour is dispelled. I enjoy watching and seeing people interact in that manner.

      Human behaviour in this manner, though it may cause damage, but it’s ability to go looking for the truth is… inspiring.

      Even if it is something as trivial as the entertainment industry.

  2. Valentine Pherguson June 21, 2010 / 3:36 AM

    Omg.. i just love Michael Jackson.. I’m still sad he died..

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