Monday, November 23, 2009

MHF and AHF are Internet illiterate

THE Malaysian (MHF) and Asian Hockey Federations (AHF) are professionals in launching programmes, with pomp-and-pageantry, after which, they don’t give two hoots about maintenance.
There are too many projects, blueprints and whatnots that were launched by AHF and MHF over the years with no follow-ups to chronicle in this column, so the topic will be confined to websites.
The MHF website was launched in the run-up to the Johor-Singapore Junior World Cup in June, but has been in a slumber state since.
There is no update at all, not even on the Junior World Cup, and it died after reporting that Malaysia beat England 1-0 in the first match.
Accountability, it seems, is missing from the MHF dic tionary as they waste money in creating a website which they never had any intention of updating.
It is a pity, as all they needed to do was pick up stories from the Malaysian media and paste it, even that seems to be a tedious chore for those who were paid to register the domain.
Now, news on Malaysian hockey is placed on individual blogs in the country and around the world, while the MHF don’t even bother to inform the public on the dozens of tournaments and friendly matches that the national players at different age groups have competed in this year.
There is not even an effort to promote the Malaysia Hockey League (MHL) which will begin on December 4, even though plans are afoot to telecast some of the matches live on television.
And it looks like the MHF need to pay royalty to the AHF for stealing their ‘launch and forget’ blockbuster script.
The AHF launched its during the Azlan Shah Cup in April and one would have thought that it would at least last for the duration of the tournament.
AHF president Sultan Azlan Shah made the announce ment, and launched the website during the tournament, but it never even lived to see the final results or stories posted.
The Asian body has hosted the Asia Cup in Kuantan, the Women’s Asia Cup in Thailand and the Under-18 Asia Cup in Myanmar since, but if one is looking for results for these tournaments, forget the AHF website, as it has been silent since its launch.
The Myanmar boys qualifier for the Youth Olympics in Singapore next year was a nightmare for journalists looking for results, as the AHF officials kept the scores a big secret close to their chests, and even the Myanmar Hockey Fed eration joined in as an unholy trinity as their website never bothered to offer information on the tournament, except to mention that thy will be hosting the tournament and that the stadium is ready.
The Internet provides a means for the Malaysian and Asian Hockey Federations to reach the masses. And there are millions of schoolchildren in this region to tap, introduce and interest in the sport, like it is being professionally done in Europe.
Hockey training programmes and tactical videos are avail able online there, but in Asia, we have yet to even reach the reporting stage on the information highway, and are still stuck firmly on the launch-pad.