Cribbing right

Responding to “Government awards media awards” kikisoso called me a cribber. This is what kikisoso wrote:

The easiest job in the world is to crib. The task at hand is to provide beter and viable alternatives.
OL, let us hear your alternative plans that are more well thought out than just wishful thinking. media people judging themselves will be a bloody melee ….
I think we should learn the lessons of this award and make it more credible next time around – you know, no jury winners (what a balony), better and more broadbased jury selection, awards for ‘body of works’ and not one report …. and what not, By teh way, what was the Dashos at the helm of MOIC doing, eating peanuts … how could they let such grave inadequacies slip by? Too busy arranging te folds of their ghos and colourful kabneys???
Until then , let us refrain from cribbing – the easiest job in the world.

The reason I raise an issue is to draw attention to it. I do so my sharing my opinions on the issue, fully aware that they are just that: an individual’s opinion.

I try not to present solutions. Doing so would take the focus away from the issue. And it would be arrogant. Anyway, I do not have solutions to every problem. And even when I think I have one, that solution may not be the best one.

So the idea is to share my opinion on an issue, even if I’m seen to be “cribbing”. I believe that this allows our readers, including kikisoso, to express their considered opinions on the issue. And to discuss how they would address the issue; how they would solve the problem.

And this is exactly what kikisoso has done. Kikisoso has expressed critical views on an issue (i.e, cribbed) and called for the awards to be made more credible in the future. I find kikisoso’s views useful. And I hope that the media and the government pay attention to them.

As for the “better and viable alternatives” that kikisoso calls for, we fist need to understand the issue. For me the issue is not the credibility of the awards. I’m not cribbing about how the selections were conducted. Or that they may not have been fair.

For me the real issue is preventing government involvement and control in the media, no matter how small the risks may appear to be. So when our government organizes the media awards, and must decide who wins and who doesn’t, I’m naturally concerned. I’m worried that our government could, knowingly or otherwise, influence our otherwise promising media.

Now for a possible “alternative plan” to minimize the risk of government interference in the media. Many countries have press clubs. And I understand that our media are trying to form a journalists association. Such an association would be the most qualified to decide how to conduct future media awards without unhealthy outside influences.

Will that rule out controversy at future awards? No! You can bet that there will be controversy. But remember the issue: government interference in the media. That issue, I can say confidently, would have been addressed.


Facebook Comments:


  1. cribbing. I think all opinion coloumns, editorials, blogs, and gossping in bars amount to cribbing. And it is very important, because if we dont crib, we dont tell everyone something is wrong and needs to be changed. When a lot of people say that something is wrong, it is debated upon, thought about, and finally, hopefully, changed.
    so cribbing is actually doing something. Cribbing, or in better words, voicing your opinion, is what helps establish moral codes in a society, which enables us to decide that something is wrong and something is right. And when we have established that, we try to keep up to these standards, our laws are based on these standards, and we are then trying to acheive betterment. That is where ‘cribbing’ leads to.
    That said, i would like to crib a little bit about an article i read in Bhutan Times defending the judge who won the best political story award. Oh i got a copy of tomorrow’s BT today, i wonder whats up? anyway, i read about the oh so controversial media awards, where they complained of (other) media cribbing about the awards and not thanking the government for organising the awards.
    I agree with the OL, the government deciding which reporter/paper to recognise is dangerous. The government is not a pure incorruptible body. The media, in an ideal situation, is there to ensure that the government goes the right way. We do that by trying to bring out issues that we think are not going right, so that a lot of people in the country can crib and the government decides to alter it.
    When we allow the government to choose who to reward, who to declare as the ‘best journalsit in bhutan’, we are allowing them to push back those that may write against them. The government is not god. It can go wrong, it can be corrupt. It is best to avoid situations like this year, where reporters like Tensing Lamsang, (who is not exactly the reporter to write ballads about the government), are overlooked completely. what is the message here? “we do not appreciate reporters like him.”
    It is clear enough.
    About the judge who was also the winner, i dont know when it became a ‘joint BT reporter effort’, but at the time of announcing the results, the nominations were in the person’s name, and he was declared the winner, not the team. He was just the editor, says BT. But since when did the Editors start taking credit for a story. No matter how many people are involved, the writer is always the writer. the editor’s name coming up for nominations? explanation not accepted.
    The article on Bt goes on to say that if we are doubting his intentions, we are doubting MOIC secretary’s intentions, because he said explicitly to the media that no, the persons presence in the judge panel would not make a difference to the results. In short, the judge was the person who wrote/edited the article, the nomination was filed in his name with his picture to boot, and HE won the award, but no, we are not to question the ethics involved here, becasue we may be pointing a finger at all the people involved. Ahem. This is exactly the type of society that we are trying to get out of.
    The least that the MoIC and everyone involved could have done was have another judge judge that particular story to avoid this very situation. NO? No! we are to sit still, and take the word of someone who says, “its ok, because i say it so.” I didnt like the BT article because of the threat it seems to carry: “say that u dont agree with the selection of the judge and u are raising a question on the integrity of the MoIC secretary.” We are not. We are simply saying, us being fairly intelligent beings, that a judge awarding his own story is not quite right. And what would be acceptable is if things like that don’t happen again. No excuses are required for this. Because excuses mean that these incidents will continue to occur and one day, the media awards will be nothing but a sham.
    Oh, one more sentence i didnt like. I can’t really remember the exact sentence, but it meant something like “so what if our awards were dirty? so are the pulitzer, nobel and oscars.”
    I dont like the sentence because it seems to say, “Its ok to be corrupt, as long as there are also other people who are.” Really, its time to set our own standards. Its not OK to say “oh, well, atleast there are other people who are as wrong as us.”
    I heard this Japanese lady say at a book launch recently that we, the Bhutanese, have no excuse to go wrong, because of the kind of leaders we have had. She is right. One cant help go wrong if that is the only way taught to one. but we have been taught different. We really have no excuse but to be right.
    Oh, OL, please excuse this really long comment, i should probably have cribbed in my own blog! But i moderate my comments, and i’ll probably not accept comments that annoy me!! but people calling me cribber number two are welcome here ! 🙂
    (PS, the previous entry has a lot of mistakes, could you please delete that, i cant seem to do it myself)

    • di: i’ve been thinking about what the Bhutan Times article means for democratic bhutan. you’ve said it well, very well.

    • Tenzing Lamsang says

      Well written and analysed di. We need more reporters like you to stop all the praising and defending and start doing some real reporting and analyzing.

    • kikisoso says

      Lady Di (??),

      Well said … I wish you spend more time and thought on what is a better alternative …. let’s get on and rise above the melee. Surely, people do not want to know too much about the past …. say somethng concrete about the future … when you advocate BETTER solutions, its not cribbing, otherwise it is. very simple!!!
      Opinions are a dime a dozen … Dear OL and all, “Talk when you have something to say …. not when you have to say something on everything”

  2. Kanchimatengteng says

    di, a cribbing well done! I agree with you completely. The media awards have to be conducted more professionally. I am just thinking how our envious neighbours will have a field day ridiculing the fact that a judge could win an award for himself. Sheesh! Only in Bhutan. Only in Bhutan.

    I am also sick of people including our PM and every holier-than-thou self touting HM K4’s noble vision of GNH. Suddenly these self professed happiness experts are defining GNH for us all. The arrogance of it all. Happiness is a very individual and subjective human emotion. The sheer enormity of its variance among individuals disallows it from being quantified meaningfully.

    So, I was laughing at the New York Times articles that quoted our happiness experts reducing GNH to a simplistic nonsensical equation that didn’t say anything at all!!! To top it off we are to have a survey every two years to “measure” GNH. I mean, let us not be the laughing stock of academia. Our King has given us a noble concept – let us not cloud it with our stupidity and vagueness. Let us make our communities stronger and more connected. We are about to import western Buddhism ignoring our Dzongkha curriculum and improving it instead.

    Enough of all this nonsense. We need a stronger voice for civil society. And we need our media to be stronger and independent. And we need to crib, and crib a hell lot more! But we also need to offer alternatives and solutions.

  3. Hmmmmmmmm now, I know why Bhutan Today is still struggling. Di dear, rather than working your ass off in here on a blog, why don’t you work on writing professional articles for your paper? I am sure with the time you spent here writing that comment, you would have come up with a paper half as good. I am not sure if the article for your paper or a long comment on OL’s blog is more important and more productive. Last, please don’t defend your paper here by saying you guys have improved and blah balhs….prove those people wrong (if you can). I hope you will take my words in as good as my intent is.
    Thank you and good night.

    • Thanks for your concern, la Reason. Your name seems a little mismatched, you should call yourself ‘Unreasonable’. Because it would be unreasonable for you to assume that people work 24X7 at their jobs.
      I consider it very important for a journalist to read whatever people in the country are saying about important issues, and I also consider it very important to float out my own say. Thats the whole reason i chose to work in the media, and why i also maintain a blog.
      But thanks for your concern, I love my job, and i will always work my hardest to improve my paper. As a reader, i appreciate any complaints that you want to make about our paper, and i also realise that you deserve a better paper. We are all working at it. Lets hope for the best.
      Oh BTW, the long comment took a really short time to write. ^_^

  4. kikisoso says

    Guys, can you cut to the chase and keep articles short pleaseee, sorry, just a suggestion.
    It is all about which end of the stick we hold, including cribbing. My only grouse is the crbbing should be a product of thought out “thought-process”, not off the cuff indolences and self-righteous rants. Get me!!
    Please reflect on that. The journey is teh goal but let’s talk bout walking the path and not destroying the path altogether ….
    Let sanity prevail …

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