Rather against our corporate nature, we have consistently struggled to say anything terribly nice about the various Jakarta media which, by and large, manage not to separate journalism from paid puffs and advertising – with spotting the join being almost impossible to do most of the time.
The same cannot be said of the freebie Jakarta Expat, not that it doesn’t have advertising because it does – and lots of it, but because it makes it very clear just what-is-what. Not only that but they are also increasingly producing articles, real articles, articles of genuine interest to your Jakarta expat. If this is a trend they can keep up then they are on a winner and, being a sucker for classifieds, they already have my loyalty! The thing is created with high class software that is quite beyond the means of this organ unless our boat comes in – and then printed in full colour on glossy paper.
Couple of great pieces this week (fortnight – ED), one of them tremendously insightful on the late Darryl Patton, the “Godfather” of Jakarta’s many expat bars. The Editor has spoken at length to Darryl on a number of occasions over the years yet still learned a lot from the article. The other excellent piece is about one Andre Graf, a crazy but clearly well intentioned French lunatic, who digs wells at his own expense for the benefit of the Rakyat on the island of Sumba.Glorious stuff.
On the downside. the Jakarta Expat appears to be entirely factual with nothing about large scale arrests of expatriates, boy-girl pool players or foreign tyrants found carousing in Blok M for that matter. Oh, and they do not appear to have an online version which makes, erm, “borrowing” their generally excellent photography something of a pain. There again, no one’s perfect.
The thing is available for free in all the usual bars, expat supermarkets, golf clubs etc