The Low Yatt incident over the weekend is a demonstration how ICT democracy is abused and distorted, and within seconds social media was misused to viralise lies and hatred with the intent to instigate.
Highly plausible, the city could be drawn into something really ugly so close to Hari Raya into something very ugly. Now, Police looking for several notable social media personalities for questioning.
The Malay Mail Online:
Cops to detain Papagomo, several others for spreading false news on Low Yat fracas
BY YISWAREE PALANSAMY
Monday July 13, 2015
05:22 PM GMT+8
KUALA LUMPUR, July 13 — Blogger Papagomo is in the soup again for his controversial online posts, this time for allegedly spreading unverified information about the bloody brawl last night at popular tech mall Low Yat Plaza.
According to Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, Papagomo, whose real name is Wan Muhammad Azri Wan Deris, will be hauled up along several others identified by the police for spreading malicious talk online.
“These stories are all made up and some social media users have been making it worse by spreading it and speculating further.
“One of them is Papagomo and few others.
“I have ordered that they be hauled up and we will take immediate action,” Khalid told reporters after visit to Low Yat Plaza here.
Khalid did not, however, specify what were the contents shared by Papagomo on the Low Yat fracas that had landed him in trouble.
A riot broke out last night at Low Yat Plaza that left five people injured, including several journalists. Police have since detained 18 people believed involved in the melee.
The riot reportedly started after a 22-year-old man was handed over on Friday to the police for allegedly stealing a phone from a store at the popular tech mall. Disgruntled by the incident, the man then allegedly contacted his friends who later returned to the mobile phone store, assaulted its workers and caused some RM70,000 worth of damages.
Rumours swirled on social media after the alleged theft that the Chinese trader had sold the Malay man a counterfeit phone, leading to calls for boycotts of “cheating” Chinese traders and the complex.
The incident then led to a mob descending on the mall last night.
It is unfair to judge how significant of what social media operators such as Papagomo did to stir up the Low Yat story as it unfolds and escalated with his participation, without proper investigation.
However, the reach of Papagomo’s social media network must have some negative effects.
The reasons are simple. Papagomo used footage of a person being traumatised to create the necessary visual effects which should easily draw emotion and anguish of the followers or audience of his social media account.
Papagomo is a social media personality which has the privilege of being chummy-chummy with some very high up leaders within UMNO and Government. Infact, his name was even lauded as an example of a social media hero during one of the UMNO General Assemblies.
The fact is that Papagomo whose name is Wan Muhammad Azri Wan Deris was a convicted ex-traffic policemen for extorting bribe from a youth which he caught possessing a needle of illicit narcotics.
What happened in Low Yat was thuggery and Papagomo, who is seen as a social media warrior for UMNO, is a contributor for escalating the ill intent of manipulated racial clashes which was actually started on a simple theft.
Probably UMNO leaders especially at very high level should be very selective with people they consort with, especially in the eyes of public where the advancement of technology and communication allows information to be transmitted in speed of light.
Patronage of very high up UMNO leaders provide former convicts like Papagomo to have a place within the UMNO cyberwarfare operations and fame and reach of followers could bring about adverse and very unproductive effect for the nation.