Launched in 1999, Malaysiakini believes that independent media is critical to a country’s progress. Independent media inform citizens of current affairs, helping them hold the government of the day accountable through citizen action, participation and voting decisions. Without a vigilant media, those in power are tempted to use their financial powers to bribe the influential and their policing authority to limit dissent. Acting in the interest of a few, such actions lead to disunity of the nation and decay of society.
In Malaysia, traditional print and broadcast media are tightly regulated and controlled by the government. Media operations are closely monitored and owners encouraged to toe the line on matters of political interest.
However, the online media has to date not subject to the same licensing, and allowing more diversity on the Internet. Nevertheless, Internet media is subject to laws that restrict freedom of speech, such as the Official Secrets Act and the Sedition Act, as well as civil action such as defamation.
Malaysiakini is now published in four languages – English, Malay, Chinese and Tamil – reaching over 2.5 million readers every month with independent coverage of political and current affairs. We achieve this independence by allowing editors and journalists the full freedom to practise professional and ethical journalism, without interference of the shareholders, advertisers or government. We believe that past and present journalist will vouch for the independence of the newsroom from external influences.
Editorial independence is the fruit of financial independence. By paying for content, news readers help maintain the focus on quality news. Its a small investment towards an informed society, as well as an accountable government. Find out more about our finances and how you can contribute. We have also benefitted from donors who share our vision of a free press.