Political Apathy.

Being someone who can proudly say that he is of political apathy ( individual indifference towards political events and movements), I am actually quite shocked that I actually BOTHER about the upcoming elections and who to vote for etc. Well, one of the reasons could be that I am already 21 and I am eligible for voting but on top of that, I believe it is due to the presence of social media.

Seriously, whether I like it or not, local politics is EVERYWHERE on social media and it just pops up in my face; be it people liking opposition parties Facebook pages or my Twitter followers retweeting everything related to the elections. Hence, I have developed an interest in the politics that is going on pertaining to the upcoming general elections. It’s interesting how a nobody like Nicole Seah can become an overnight sensation. Well, her popularity can be attributed to well, the use of social media sites! (and her capabilities of course). Having over 23, 932 likes within a few weeks (in comparison to the 18, 801 likes our foreign minister George Yeo has), she IS a very popular woman.


Through YouTube also, videos of her (and Tin Pei Ling) have increased awareness regarding politics to the youths with political apathy. On top of that, it is easier to disseminate information that cannot be found in the local media online. The Internet has greatly aided that especially with the increase in elections-related websites and also Twitter/Facebook accounts, giving alternative views of the issue at hand.

With social networking sites and use of (not so excessive) social media, I believe there will be a shift from youths with political apathy to youths with political awareness. One good example: Me.


The Future – Limitless Possibilities

Sick of the TV shows you watch on your TV set? Sick of running to your desktop just to load your favourite online show? Why not get the Internet TV? As stated by the name, it’s simply having the INTERNET within your TV. Do you think it’s possible? Well according to Sony and Samsung, it is!


Presenting to you.. Sony Internet TV with Google TV.


And another Internet TV product by Samsung.

Nothing seems to be impossible these days. Desktops have evolved to laptops, then netbooks and now tablets. Even a smart phone can carry out the same functions of the computer (e.g email, internet surfing etc). The future has endless possibilities. Anything can happen, anything can be changed or created. Speaking of TABLETS, it seems that nowadays, TABLES can be used as  a computer as well, in the case of the extremely futuristic WINDOWS SURFACE technology.


Maybe in the future, what we define as Internet now wouldn’t even exist in the future. Perhaps it is as normal as breathing in fresh air. It is just there for us to us. I strongly believe that  EVERYTHING will be connected wirelessly and hence no needs for desktops and cables. We will be surrounded by the Internet everywhere we go, be it the wall displays we see outside Ion Orchard, the runway shows that we attend (http://youtu.be/3wLYpLqxoiI) or maybe the food menu in restaurants?

The Microsoft Surface targets the main part of the house – the living room. What about the sacred chamber that we use everyday – the toilet? I believe the Internet will impact this as well; maybe download an application from Google store to change the wallpaper of the toilet? Maybe a forest theme on a Monday (with sounds as well) and a beach theme on Tuesday? Some may laugh, but why not? The future is full of endless possibilities!

Cars that drive themselves to their destinations using GPS?

What more can we expect from the Internet then?


Above is a last video on the future of Internet and how it will impact technology and Singapore in the near future.

Well, that is all for now guys!

Hope you’ve had a great read.


Qazim 😀

Miscommunication 101

With the rise of the Internet in today’s society, the only thing that we can talk about is how much it has greatly impacted our lives and how we cannot live without it. On top of it, we also subconsciously list down its advantages and how much life has changed because of our high dependency on Internet usage. I’ve had enough of this. Yes, the Internet is important blablabla and has improved communications but doesn’t it result in MISCOMMUNICATION as well?


Have you ever experienced a time when you were happily chatting with your friend on MSN when suddenly.. there’s silence? No one says anything to each other and you wonder why. So does the other party. Maybe the other person is busy? Maybe you said something wrong? So, you pluck up the courage and try to revive the conversation. The other party replies (at last) and other party replies…

“You got say anything meh? I never receive anything leh..”

And so, you decided to investigate this incident. What went wrong?

You checked your conversation history and copies and paste the conversation and you realised that, your message has not been sent! Technology has failed you! Miscommunication has occured. What if it had resulted in a relationship failure? I am sure many have experienced this situation before and this is a very personal example of how I feel it the power of the Internet may lead to miscommunication.

There are also times on MSN where the conversation is not in proper order. For example, if you send a message to your friend at the same time he’s sending to you, there may be a disruption in the order of your messages. The message that he sent will appear before yours on his MSN window whereas the message you sent will appear before his on your MSN window. The lack of a proper conversational flow is one of the downsides of the Internet and the cause of miscommunication.

On top of that, the rise of Internet usage has also resulted in less face to face conversations. Why do we even need face to face conversations if we have Skype? It’s still the same thing, no? My answer is: NO! Face to face is the richest medium. We get to experience the true emotions of an individual and are able to express ourselves properly without limitations. What if your Internet connection is less than stable? Wouldn’t it lead to even more miscommunication? Imagine pissing someone off and your “sorry” message gets to him or her 1minute later.

Not only that, I feel that communicating online is rather insincere as your true emotions are concealed behind a computer screen.

What you type does not necessarily represent what you feel. Also, not every emotion can be expressed through words. The Internet (although it may be seen as something social), I feel, makes people drift further and further apart. It has resulted in insincerity of emotions, a superficial attitude towards relationships and causes miscommunication.

To conclude, I feel that we should realise the limitations of the Internet and to maintain strong relational ties with our close ones, not via the mediums provided by the Internet but through face to face contact. Does everyone agree? 😀

Citizen Journalism: unSTOMPable

My group and I did a presentation on citizen journalism today and that shall be the inspiration for my entry. Citizen journalism is something close to our hearts as it can be found anywhere and everywhere. What is citizen journalism? Several definitions could be found on the Internet but I believe that it is something that should be the voice of the people without crossing boundaries and resulting in tension (e.g extreme political issues and racism)

Several factors differentiate between citizen journalism and traditional journalism. Firstly, traditional journalism is more controlled by the government (or the wealthy and influential) whereas citizen journalism has greater autonomy. It is up to the individual to publish the type of stories he prefer or pressing issues that needs to be addressed. This shows that consumers will be exposed to a higher volume of news through citizen journalism in comparison to the restricted traditional media,

Mr Brown, a famous Citizen Journalist in Singapore

On top of that, traditional journalism is also deemed to be of higher credibility due to the dominance of the government in news reporting and dissemination. In comparison, citizen journalism has low credibility because anyone can create the news even without proper qualifications. Traditional journalism usually takes the form of newspapers, magazines and websites whereas citizen journalism extends this boundary and goes on to more electronic forms such as podcasts, tweets. blogs and videos.

Also, citizen journalism also encourages interactivity as readers are able to interact with the authors themselves by leaving comments on their webpages in comparison to that provided by the traditional media. With the rise in new technology, there will definitely be an increase in citizen journalism. We should also take note that as citizen journalists, we are not properly equipped with the skills required that of a journalism. The most important point that we should take is to not let our emotions cloud our judgement and take a neutral towards issues.

How then will traditional journalism be impacted then?

Traditional journalism seems to be losing its foothold especially with the rise in citizen journalism. However, this does not render traditional journalism useless. In fact, I believe that both traditional and citizen journalism will remain extremely pertinent in today’s society. Instead of working separately as two elements, I believe that they will in future merge to provide consumers varying viewpoints of the story and to provide a holistic view of the issue in place. Let us look forward to the future of journalism and its progress in years.

Facebook Elections?

Instead of General Elections we have Facebook Elections?

With the rise of the Internet and its influential nature, many are turning towards it not only for information but also as a political tool? Yes, you heard it right! The internet can now be used as a political tool! How times have changed. Once upon a time, politicians used radios, televised speeches and even articles on newspapers to spread their message to the masses. Now, all has changed, politicians are jumping onto the internet and social networking bandwagon as well.

Why is this so, you may ask? To reach out to a larger audience of course! From the looks of it, Traditional Media is facing stiff competition from the New Media due to the latter’s overwhelming advantages. Using the Internet as a tool will reach out to youngsters like me who may not give two hoots regarding politics. The Innternet is interactive and information can be consumed easily rather than the cold hard facts presented in newspapers, flyers or posters.

With the internet, politicians are able to expand their promotional strategies and are not confined only to printed material. They are able to fully utilise the use of videos, podcasts, voice recordings and so much more, making the politician’s jobs much more interesting (and to us voters to as well; more drama and more methods to sway us over to choose whichever political party we’re interested in). The use of Internet tools promotes greater interactivity of the audience and allows us to further assess the capabilities of the politicians as well as the effectiveness of their persuasion skills.

For example, one of the youngest PAP candidates, Ms Tin Pei Ling, plans to use social networking sites to reach out to the younger population. (Click HERE for article)

The use of emotionally charged videos may invoke certain emotions of the individuals (be it sympathy, enviousness or maybe pride?) and hence result in the change of mindset of individuals. Also, with YouTube, these videos can be made viral and be seen by millions, making the new media an effective way of reaching out to the masses.

Another positive impact of using new media for politics:
Even from your bed, you can STILL watch a video of a politician campaigning without being physically there.

The United States for example, has long used social media and the Internet as one of the campaigning methods (as can be seen by President Barrack Obama’s presidential campaign). Singapore, on the other hand, has caught up and recently eased internet election advertising, allowing the political parties and candidates to tap on this resource for the upcoming General Elections.

Will it work for Singapore? Or are the youths of today apathetic regarding elections that even the use of social media would be rendered ineffective? Or maybe everything will be done online? Instead of General Elections we have.. Facebook Elections?

Here are some links that you can check out with regards to the use of Internet by Singapore.

<a href="http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1116396/1/.html”&gt;http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1116396/1/.html

Here’s a video of President Obama’s first presidential campaign

And this is.. “another” of President Obama’s video. Or not.

And lastly, another presidential candidate that got away?

Mind-blowing Promotional Methods of the Future?

For every product that is released in the market, there is a need for the producers to ADVERTISE it to the masses. Promotional activities, publicity stunts, full page adverts in the papers are some of the things that these producers and related companies will resort to. Of course, social networking sites and television adverts are located at the top of the list as well. All these advertising methods fall under the MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS category; messages and related media used to communicate with a market (Thanks Wiki!)

Most importantly, these forms of Marketing Communications (Marcomms) methods employ the use of Multimedia (media and content that uses a combination of different content forms). For example, Apple products are promoted through various means. YouTube videos are one of the examples and this represents the video aspect of multimedia. It is also easily accessible (you can watch YouTube videos from your very own smartphones, laptops etc) to the masses and encourages user interactivity from the feedback that can be given under the YouTube comments section.

This is an example of a STILL image. Basically, it’s a promotional method that does not involve moving objects.

Not only that, the official APPLE website also provides more multimedia methods which has STILL IMAGES, AUDIO, VIDEOS, CONSUMER INTERACTIVITY and also ANIMATION as part of its strategy to incorporate computer multimedia in its marketing communications.

Basically, I find the use of multimedia effective as it gives us a multi-sensory experience and it enlivens our different senses; especially the sight and sound. (You can’t possibility TASTE the iPad through your computer right?). Use of multimedia also allows us to retain more information regarding the product as moving images will leave a more lasting memory in comparison to only using still images. The incorporation of all the various multimedia is essential in keeping consumers interested and wanting more from them.

Those mentioned above are some of the examples of multimedia images which invigorates the sense of SIGHT and HEARING. What will be next? Advertisements that allows us to SMELL the products through the television screen? Maybe TASTE the KFC chicken they’re promoting on the future “television”? So many endless possibilities.

Let me end my entry with this ONE advertisement that I guarantee will BLOW your mind away and give you a very REAL experience that makes you feel as if you’re there itself. (Or in disgraced beauty queen, Ris Low’s words, it’ll make you go… BOOOMZ) (:


Protection is key!

Just like in the real world, the cyber world is full of of danger and the unknown. You may think that is safe and comfortable (just like Singapore) but in actual fact, there is much more that is going on. Unknowingly, your computer may have been attacked by viruses, trojans, worms or even worse, hacked by cyber hackers.

I’m sure many of you may have heard of it but may not know what it actually means? There’s a reason why you’re reading this blog; either for me to explain more to you OR.. that you came here through my Facebook link. Oh, or if you’re my Comms 125 teacher and you’re checking this blog.

So, let me explain (or paraphrase) what the above terms are!

Virus: programming code that is secretly introduced into a system in order to corrupt it or destroy data. (quite self-explanatory). They attach themselves to files and will be executed when the user takes action.

Worm: self-propogating virus that replicates itself over a computer network and sends itself to other program. It may do so even without the intervention of any user and does not see the need to attach itself to any program.

Virus and worms sound like they are the same but as seen from the definition above, the main difference lies in the the fact that viruses can only be launched with the presence of the user unlike worms. Also, viruses ALWAYS cause harm and damage to the computer with malicious intent. Some worms also do not software damage as their main job is just to..spread.

And now, let’s move on to MORE!!

Trojan: A destructive programme that seems like an innocent application but in fact causes damage similar to viruses. Sometimes it pretends to get rid of virus but in actual fact, it may be the virus itself! So, beware users!! (Frankly, I think my computer may have some Trojan hiding somewhere. I’m such a techno-idiot!)

Phishing: a way to obtain useful information such as credit cards, user IDs, passwords etc. (Yes, VERY dangerous). How do they do this?? By baiting you to enter fake websites and promoted through emails and social networking. Very interesting right? By the way, Phishing comes from the words FISHING and PHREAKING

So many viruses, but WHAT to do?

The number one way to avoid getting into trouble is to abide by this one word, “protection”. Similar to avoiding unwanted pregnancy, PROTECTION is essential in preventing our computers from being exposed to such harm

From THIS video, THESE are the three things you should do

1) Never tell anyone your password
2) Don’t give out personal information to anyone online
3) Be very careful what you download

Ok, that was rather BEGINNER, but for more advanced users, THIS article is very important!
Some of the important points are..

1) Don’t open/accept files that are unknown and from a dubious user
2) Ensure your source of your downloads are legitimate (especially songs and videos)
3) Update your anti-virus software regularly
4) Constantly back up your files to ensure that it won’t get corrupted or deleted
5) Constantly check the following websites for help and updates



Viva La Video-LAH!

To be a good communicator, I believe that one should not only be a good speaker or writer but should be able to bring his or her intended message clearly to others via various mediums. One of the mediums that I will be talking about will be.. videos!

Our task for the week was to explore the “Windows Movie Maker” application and talk about our experience while creating your own video. Well, that was a rather simple task (#ego) for me since I have already had experience making videos prior to this assignment. In fact, I made several videos (more of photo montages, actually) since my secondary days and I had a lot of fun while doing it.

Why I love making videos!
1) Allows me to explore my creative side!
2) It can be used as a gift – farewell present, ORD present, birthday “card”
3) It can be used to mark special events in your life!
4) It allows you to kill time especially when once upon a time you were bored and jobless (post-army days)

I had a really fun time making videos but sometimes I get rather pissed off while making videos. Not only is it VERY time consuming, it is also very laggy and slow-paced and the application HANGS rather easily. I have to constantly save my data to ensure that I would not have to restart the whole video making process.

I believe that the application can improve on it’s user-friendliness especially for lazy people who don’t bother reading the “Help” topics and would rather self-explore. Also, I found it rather frustrating when the music that I added in does not seem to synchronise with the video clip that I have inserted. (Do I have my computer or the application to blame? Seriously, I have NO idea).

Despite all these gripes about my video making experience, it has indeed been an interesting one because these videos that I have published brings back memories; memories of past significant events which have left a deep impact on me. Let me share with you guys the videos that I have published over the past few years. (;

I made this video as a farewell gift to my First Three Months friends in Millenia Institute (:

This video was for my friend’s 21st birthday!

This video was for my platoon mates in my NS Unit – Medical Response Force (MRF)

This video was to sum up my EXTREMELY fun army life (Yes, TWO videos made based on my army life. Contrary to everyone’s negative army experiences, i REALLY had a lot of fun)

And last but not last, my most recent video! (and the HARDEST, as I had so much trouble coordinating the sound and music, hence several weird parts there). Presenting to you.. a rather awkward looking UB MASS DANCE!


So that’s most of the (nice and significant) videos that I have produced. They may not be A grade quality (transition may suck, effects also) but it sure brought back a lot of memories of days long gone. Hmm.. maybe I should be a YouTube star like them.

So, what was YOUR video making experience like? (:

Are wE-learning?

I am sure most of us, Singaporean kids are exposed to e-Learning (Electronic Learning) or online learning during our many years in school (especially secondary school). To some of us, we have e-learning because we have the assumption that the teachers are too lazy to teach and therefore they upload all sorts of random assignments for us to do (to torture us) while they take a break. And of course, we will leave all the assignments to the last minute and copy our friend’s work in school.

Well, that was MY experience with E-learning (The benefit: we don’t have to go to school!). I never found E-learning useful as I would rather have a REAL teacher in school rather than a machine (the computer) telling me what to do. E-learning forces us to be independent learners and explore our own answers and solutions but I believe that most of do not benefit much from it. (Well, I know Ididn’t. I only learned how to copy, paste and paraphrase chunks of information). If I had questions to ask, who would I turn to? Will the computer be able to help me? Or am I supposed to call my friend?

Call me traditional but I would prefer a traditional classroom where we are able to interact with others rather than face a computer screen and “learn” from it. I like the interaction between teacher and students in a classroom and I feel that with greater interaction, this provides a comfortable learning environment for the students which will in turn result in the student learning more.

The question is, how can we make learning more effective using digital media?

We can provide more interactive media for the students. For example, using forums to students can share their views with the classmates? Maybe we can have videos of Mathematics on YouTube (click HERE for an example) by the teachers for the students? Consultation via webcam with the teacher? An iPhone application where you can do your homework on? There are many endless possibilities on what we can do to use digital media to make E-learning more effective but will everyone be receptive to it? PE Lessons using Wii?

Will e-learning serve to be a distraction instead? Frankly, while writing this blog entry, I can’t even focus on solely writing this entry since I’m multitasking (Facebooking, Twitter-ing, SMS-ing etc). If even I can’t focus on this one simple task, how are the future shorter attention span students of the future do so?

I predict that the digital classroom will be all wireless so that we can all work from home or anywhere with an Internet connection. So will there be a need for teachers? Or will that term not even exist in the future? Will we be downloading textbooks just like how we download applications on iTunes? How will examinations be conducted? So many questions and no answers as of yet.

Empty Classrooms Of The Future?

Well, only time can tell how the future will be like. (:

Reading books together is so extinct

Enjoy the weekends! 😀

(Blog)shop till you drop!

I am sure that most of us have heard of e-commerce (electronic commerce – digitally enabled commercial transactions between and among organisations and individuals) and that there are different variations of it, ranging from B2B, B2C and C2C.

However for some, these may be some of the things in your mind,
“Huh? What are you talking about? Why so many random letters? So CSE!!”

Well, simply put, the B stands for Businesses whereas the C stands for Consumers and they represent the different type of transactions. (E.g B2C stands for Business to Consumers transaction e.g selling of movie tickets online, Golden Village?).

E-commerce also refers to blog shops, online shops set up by netizens to sell their goods to the masses. Most Singaporeans should know the existence of blog shops as they are popular among today’s culture. Blog shops sell everything under the sun, ranging from contact lenses to cameras to clothes to.. mobile phone covers. EVERYTHING can be found online making online transactions even more rampant over the past decade (which does not necessarily make it a bad thing, right?)

This is NOT obscenely inappropriate. It’s related to blog shops, they sell.. BRA MASKS??? The original link is HERE!!

Why do I keep mentioning BLOG SHOPS? Well, I feel that e-commerce is such a big term to my non-communication readers and by using blog shops as an example, it will bring across my point clearer to the masses. (Self-justification)

Yes, E-Commerce are all the rage nowadays. The question is, WHY is that so?
Well, I have chosen the Top 5 reasons why E-Commerce are all the rage and here are the reasons why…

1) Strong business planning
The businesses know WHAT they want, WHO to target, WHAT to sell and HOW to have a competitive edge over rivals selling similar products. Everything’s part of the master plan and all they have to do is to execute it without any hiccups. With careful planning, even horrible things and last minute issues can be solved. You should also build robust backend applications (providing support and backup to the front line services) that are scalable, accurate and provide real time data.

2) A unique and personalised website and marketing
Having a distinguishable website amongst the sea of random web links will give the website an edge over the rest. Be it a small video montage or a prominent logo to showcase your brand, having a website that stands out ensure that the website is etched in the minds of consumers and ensures the steady flow of recurring customers. You can also increase your web presence by performing search engine optimization for your website. Not only that, you could associate your website with others that offer free gifts and discounts to increase web presence. Strong marketing is essential to ensure that your business is OUT THERE with the others and is prominent enough for consumers to sit up and take notice.

3) Having good relationship with consumers
Especially for blog shop owners, it is crucial to have a strong relationship with your consumers. This is to promote a sense of trust and ensure that the same customers continue coming and not only that, bring along their friends, colleagues etc with them to your web shop. Having good relational ties with your customers and offering them promotions and loyalty points also ensures a healthy working relationship

4) Adapt to changes
This is essential as it shows careful planning and great foresight. One should be prepared to spot mistakes and assess the business with no biaseness. Also, there is a need to learn the loopholes and mistakes and rectify them to ensure that it won’t be repeated in the future and there is a better way to handle the solution.

5) Surprise your Customers
Providing the same old services and products will not be attractive to consumers. There is a need to think and reinvent, reintroducing newer and advanced products into your stable of goods. This also ensures a competitive edge over rivals and ensure market stability. Alternatively, you can have incentives by providing offers, discounts etc to keep the customers coming. Although change IS good, the implemented change should not be too extreme and sway away from the brand image that has been etched in your consumer’s mind.

And now, let’s move on to..
Top 5 E-Commerce Mistakes!

1) Poor customer service
For blog shops, personalised services is definitely important in ensuring that customers constantly visit their blog shop for their purchases, the come-back rate of customers is essential in determining the success rate of these blog shops. If the blog shop owners are rude, inefficient and take a long time to deliver the customer’s purchases, this may leave a deep impression on the consumers and deter them from visiting the same blog shop. Furthermore, feedback is usually required with every online purchase and if most feedback are negative, this further ruins the reputation of the blog shop. Good customer service is a MUST!

2) Selling the wrong products online
Breast pumps? According to THIS website, people DO sell ridiculous things like that. I wonder what people are thinking when they sell these products. I believe that people should carefully think of what to sell so as to gain a profit for themselves. How about MORE AFFORDABLE online men clothing stores? Someone like me would need it very much, thank you!

3) Poorly designed website
With too much spam and having too many things to click on a website may just turn a customer away from purchasing online goods from the certain online shop. Everything should be done in an easy manner since accessibility is the focus of today’s society. If you have to click on SO many links just to have a look at the item that you would like to purchase, maybe it’s better to spend your time on Facebook instead

4) Complicated purchase procedures
Purchases should be fuss free and efficient. Click Click Click and we’re done! Just wait for the product to come!

5) Lack of marketing
If you don’t bother marketing your services to the masses, NO ONE will know what you’re selling. There’s a need to invest in advertising so that people will know your site exists. Word of mouth helps. Also, with the increase in social networking sites, there are online businesses with Facebook profiles and Twitter accounts which not only promote their products but also allows greater interaction between consumers who “Liked” the Facebook pages or “Follow” their Twitter accounts. One example is THIS blog shop’s Facebook page

The Internet is a double-edged sword. It can either BREAK or MAKE a business.

It can help enhance a business and allow it to further expand OR.. it can affect a business, as in the case of Toys R Us failed E-Commerce venture stated in THIS article

Question is:
Will E-Commerce take over the typical shopping experience of today?
Will it result in complacency where things can be settled in just a few clicks?
Or will there be greater issues in the future that will affect E-Commerce as a whole?

Oh, last but not least..
Credits to these following sites for inspiration and pictures!!
and Google Images 😀