Sunday 30 August 2009

Indonesians Say Malaysia Stole Their Cultural Assets, Including Folk Songs "Rasa Sayang" and "Terang Bulan"

Read here in Malaysian Insider for more


A report in Jakarta Globe newspaper quoted an executive from a state-owned recording company as asking why Malaysia’s national anthem “Negaraku” sounded like the Indonesian song “Terang Bulan” (Moon Shine).

Read here how the tune, which was originally a popular French melody composed by the lyricist Pierre-Jean de BĂ©ranger (1780-1857), evolved into Malaysia's national anthem

Ruktiningsih, the head of recording company Lokananta, urged the Indonesian government to act on the “violation of intellectual property rights”.

“We have to unite against Malaysia, as they keep stealing Indonesia’s assets,” he added.

The song “Terang Bulan” comes from a popular French melody in the Seychelles, which spread to the Malay archipelago in the early 20th century. It was adopted as Perak’s state anthem in 1901. And in 1957, it became the national anthem for Malaysia with the lyrics changed.

"Terang Bulan" sung by Anneke Gronloh

The Tune of Malaysian's National Anthem Sounds Exactly Like "Terang Bulan" Song

An Early Recording of "Mamula Moon"

This tangle is just one of many controversies between the neighbours. Indonesians see Malaysia as appropriating their cultural assets, while Malaysians say these have been part of their culture for as long as anyone can remember.

The controversies include batik designs and the popular “Rasa Sayang” ditty.

Malaysia’s usage of the Balinese pendet dance in a tourism commercial has got Indonesians up in arms.

The "Pendet" Dance originates from Bali

Kuala Lumpur had apologised for the use of the Balinese dance but said the mistake was made by a third party who was paid by Malaysia’s Tourism Ministry to produce the commercial.

The Malaysian embassy in Jakarta said in a statement earlier this week: “Nobody in Malaysia claimed that the pendet dance originated in Malaysia.”


Pakac Luteb said...

Regarding the Malaysian use of the Balinese Pendet dance in a TV commercial, i have this to say:

The statement by the Tourism Ministry of Malaysia that the party responsible is a third party engaged by the ministry seems to me to be most disingenuous.

I say that because i used to work for a large ad agency and i know how ads are produced, at least in the agency i worked for.

The client had a lot of input into ads.

After all, the client is paying a lot of money for the ad and my agency has to satisfy the client.

The client would often sit in the studio with my colleagues and the client would say what they wanted in the ad, how the name of the product should be said, what sound effects or music should be used,etc.

Before the ad aired the client might return to the studio to do a final checking of the ad.

In short, the client knew exactly what the ad would be like, before the ad was aired.

That is why i think most probably the Tourism Ministry is lying.

I think the Tourism Ministry most probably knew exactly what dance was used in the ad.

It likely can be determined if the Tourism Ministry knew what dance was used, in advance of the ad airing.

The paperwork will show what was known and when it was known. My ad agency always had a written timeline for ads, how many seconds each element of the ad lasted, etc.

The billing of the client was thus detailed as well, so much per sound effect, so much for script, so much per minute, etc.

The client would agree to payment for the ad and agree to airing of the ad only when they were satisfied with all elements of the ad.

That is understandable, their brand, product, company, could very well be made or broken by the ad.

If the Tourism Ministry has lied about the ad, the Tourism Ministry should stop dancing around the issue, confess it lied and apologise to the Malaysian public and also of course apologise to Indonesia.

Pakac Luteb

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with Pakac Luteb. As an advertising creative myself, it is beyond belief that the client (Tourism Malaysia in this case) can claim that it "left a third party engaged by the ministry" to do the work.

The creative direction, copy,voice overs, special effects all must have the client's endorsement before it is even produced. At post-production stage, the client will review it and changes will be made, if necessary.

However you view it, either the ministry is trying to cover its ass or the client is sleeping.