State of IT journalism in Singapore

In: Open Source

9 Jul 2003

There’s this publication called Computer Times which comes with The Straits Times every Wednesday – supposedly an IT read. Today’s issue has this article on Singaporean Nickson Fong, COO of Digimax, which does CGI (Computer Generated Imagery) for Hollywood movies, among them The Matrix Reloaded. There’s nothing wrong with Nickson Fong or Digimax (in fact, I’m glad a local “made it”) – it’s the reporting that I’ve reservations about.

I quote from the article:

The self-acknowledged geek builds his own computers and knows programming languages such as Unix and Linux.

Aforementioned “self-acknowledged geek” being Nickson Fong of course, who would definitely not have said that himself. The reporter (who’s name would remain undisclosed in this blog entry) doesn’t seem to have a clue. And this is an IT publication – if the reporter was a full-time employee of Computer Times, he should be transferred to a more suitable department!

It makes me shake my head really, and this isn’t the first instance I’ve seen discrepancies of this sort in Computer Times, nor many other local IT publications.

2 Responses to State of IT journalism in Singapore



July 9th, 2003 at 10pm

Having been working in Singapore for 6 years, I couldn’t recall myself reading Computer Times seriously and gained some insight or better understanding of the field from it. It’s more of a business newspaper that happens to be IT-related.

The worse thing, however, is not the lack of basic knowledge by some individual reporter (well, at least she/he didn’t consider Windows a programming language), but the lack of truly professional publications for professionals.

No, I am not talking about PC Magazines or HWZ etc, whose targeted audience are mainly home users, it’s the publications like Wired or Redherring(Redherring and Upside did close, but that’s another story) that Singapore lacks.

Taking a long break in China now, I have read many China’s own newspapers and magazines that are focusing on IT and related industries, it’s good to see the increase of both coverage and depth of the published stories and analysis. Such contrast is more worrying to the situation in Singapore.

Probably because the market in Singapore is small, and English is the primary (and only) language in the field, there is no much room left for local publications.



October 11th, 2003 at 11pm

I met him yesterday, at SCADs showing of the Matrix reloaded. He was an excellent guest, answering students questions and such. i liked how he answered my question bout the industry moving from Unix to Linux, how does everyone feel about that. “Unix is Dead” was his reply, and explained it to everyone listening.