The Globe as you know it is changing. Coming June 2019

  • More thought provoking stories that inspire
  • Independent, free and member supported
  • Vote for, pitch and commission stories
  • Member engagement with our journalists
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To understand more about why you are so important to our member support initiative, we encourage you to read the following from our managing editor ~ Read more

The Globe as you know it is changing.

Since 2007, Southeast Asia Globe has been a space for some of the region’s best writers and photographers to take our readers behind the headlines into the stories that shape people’s lives. Every month, you could expect to pick up our latest print edition and find high-quality journalism, analysis and artwork waiting on every page. And since 2007, we’ve fought to uphold our promise of quality and independence to you, our readers.

But, like we said, the world is changing. Print publications just aren’t reaching the audiences they need to fulfil their promise of informing, educating and entertaining the public. Advertisers continue to invest in digital platforms while printing costs creep ever higher. Print may not be dead, but it’s fighting for its life. And we’re tired of waiting by a sickbed for its condition to improve. We want to be present at the birth of something new.

That’s why Southeast Asia Globe is relaunching as a member-driven platform featuring daily long-form features combining world-class journalism with enthralling art design and data-centered tech. Through our core pillars – Power, Money, Life and Earth – we are focusing in on the central issues that our readers have always engaged with most, with the same in-depth coverage of politics, business, social affairs and the environment that you’ve come to expect since 2007.

But leaving print behind us doesn’t just save our backs from lugging stacks of magazines across Southeast Asia. It opens up a global readership who don’t just want to read the news, but have a say in the stories that we tell and the way that we tell them. We’re not asking you to take out another magazine subscription – our stories are open to all. What we’re offering our members is a space where they can pitch and vote on the stories that they think deserve to be told. We want to inspire an engaged and active community of members who vote for, comment on and contribute to the stories that matter most to them. We want to work with our members to curate the way they engage with the news – not just as readers, but as an active extension of our editorial team.

That’s how we’re changing to bring you great stories. Here’s how we’re not.

We’re independent. Always have been, always will be. We’re not owned by any corporation or aligned with any state. We choose the stories that we tell, and the way that we tell them.

We’re creative. We’re not interested in churning out breaking news stories on the hour, every hour. We believe that the best stories are the ones that come alive on the page, digging deeper into the issues that shape Southeast Asia – and bringing you along for the ride. From our dedicated designers to our new software development team, our commitment is to constantly challenge ourselves to find new ways of reaching out to our readers.

We’re open. Challenging governments, NGOs and businesses to be transparent with the public means nothing if we keep our own readers in the dark. That’s why we will be completely open about why we tell the stories that we tell – and how we pay for them. Work with us to build something that endures where many media fail, and decide with us exactly where that money is going.

Above all, we’re optimistic. And yeah, we know what you’re thinking. Faced with impending climate collapse, the rise of right-wing authoritarian governments across the world, widening wealth and income inequality and deepening divisions rooted in race or gender or creed, it’s hard not to open the papers and feel the weight of the world pressing down. But we wouldn’t be doing this if we didn’t believe that when people work together, they can make their little corner of the world a more just, open and equal place.

And that’s why we can’t do this without you. We believe that across the globe is a community of people who care deeply about social justice, environmental action and press freedom – and who will join in to help make those ideals a reality. We’re not just holding our hand out – we need your voice to play a vital role in building Southeast Asia Globe into a leading space for progressive causes in the region. Tell us what stories the mainstream media is missing. Share with us the causes that matter most to you, and how we can champion those causes not just across Southeast Asia, but the world.

Our vision is clear. By 2025, we want to be recognised for building a great space for outstanding journalists from across the region to explore new ways of telling Southeast Asia’s most vital stories. Let’s bring together a community of engaged and loyal members who want to help reshape the media rather than just read it. And we want to reach a point where our readers, not advertisers, are the ones working to support our shared vision of an inclusive media.

We can’t do this without you. Let’s get together and build something that we all believe in.

If you’re interested in joining us, sign up to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter. And watch this space.

Blood sport / Fatality sparks debate about child muay Thai fighters

By: Robin Spiess - Posted on: November 14, 2018 | Current Affairs

The dark side of the violent art of muay Thai draws kids into arenas to entertain the masses and take hard hits that are sometimes deadly

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Boy boxers fight during their Muay Thai boxing bout at a temporary ring in Bangkok Photo: Rungroj Yongrit / EPA-EFE

In Thailand, the recent death of a 13-year-old boy who was knocked out during a boxing match has inflamed debate about whether children should be allowed to participate in the dangerous sport.

The boy engaged in several rounds of muay Thai, or Thai kickboxing, on Saturday 10 November, and was knocked out by his opponent. He died of a brain hemorrhage two days later at a hospital outside Bangkok.

Local news outlets reported that the boy suffered brain damage when his unprotected head slammed into the ground. Footage of the boy’s last fight posted on social media shows him being punched repeatedly in the head before passing out.

The local news reported that the boy had begun his boxing career at the age of eight. His family does not intend to press charges.

Jiraporn Laothamatas, director of Thailand’s Advanced Diagnostic Imaging Center, has spent the past five years studying patterns of accumulated brain damage and memory loss in child boxers.

“This is such an unnecessary death, as there was no medical attention provided on site,” she said. Her research has helped fuel the proposal of new laws the government is considering to better protect young fighters.

There are currently few rules for organised boxing matches. Children of any age are allowed to participate, and protective gear is not customarily worn. The combat sport allows the use of punches, kicks, knees and elbows.

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Muay Thai child boxers Kongthoranee Pongmajor (R) fights with Rambo Sor Poolsawad (L) during a bout at a temporary ring in Bangkok Photo: Rungroj Yongrit / EPA-EFE

It is difficult to ban children because muay Thai is a celebrated national sport in Thailand, and mastery of it is viewed as one of few opportunities for poor kids to provide for their families.

“These kids come from impoverished families. It’s their way of making a living,” said Jiraporn. “[But] if I had my way, the minimum age [for participating in the sport] would be 18.”

Legislators have been considering a new law that would ban children under 12 from professional bouts and require children 12 to 15 to be formally registered, get permission from their parents and wear protective gear.

But the boxing community is fighting back against the proposed law.

Somchart Charoenwatcharawit, president of the Professional Boxing Association of Thailand, told Reuters that there are more than 300,000 child boxers under the age of 15 in the country.

“The new rule… will hurt the children and their parents who earn tens of thousands of baht from boxing in what is a national sport,” he said.

The boxing association wants the minimum age for boys set at 10 rather than 12.

Somchart noted that referees are supposed to end matches when fighters appear groggy, and said the boy’s recent death might have been avoided if the referee had stepped in.

According to Jiraporn, the boxing association’s discomfort with the proposed law is about revenue.

“The change in the law is being delayed because the industry makes a lot of money from child boxing,” she told Reuters. “It will take some guts for the government to push it through.”