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Da’wah OOTB (3) : Beyond Nasheed. — Prof Dr Amriah Buang

Da’wah Out Of The Box.

In OOTB (1) we said that one of the sectors normally dismissed by Conventional Da’wah (CD) is the entertainment sector. 

And we said that it’s time to prick and burst the CD superiority bubble with regard to entertainment.

In OOTB (2) we illustrated how, in alienation by the CD, the Malaysian entertainment industry had managed and is managing, in its own way, its loyalty to being Islamic.

In this OOTB (3) we argue that 21st-century da’wah must reckon with the fact that the entertainment industry will thrive and flourish even more in Malaysia’s digital age. And the implication is that the Malaysian da’wah circles have got to go beyond nasheed to be relevant.

Young Artists as Social Influencers

‘Srikandi Cinta Ku’, a song about the heroic love of a mother, was the song that won the 33-year old contestant Naqiu the title of winner of the Gegar Vaganza 2019. It happened that the nasheed group Hijjaz had also performed this number when they competed in Gegar Vaganza 2017:

Since the two years it was on air, the Hijjaz Youtube scores are as follows:

RANK(27 Dec 2019, 7-8 AM)CHANNELSNumber of views  (15 April 2017- 28 Dec 2019)
1Astro Gempak450,167
2Faiz Amir266,638
3محمد سيفول أشرف إسميل207,499
4Media Hiburan185k
5Hijjaz – Srikandi Cinta Ku | #GemaCoustic [MV]130k
6Ismail Zainal36k
7Nur Fazilah CH12K
8Ilhamy Channel II295
GRAND TOTAL 1,287,599

Compare the Hijjaz achievement over two years with the five-day YouTube scores of Naqiu’s:

(28 Dec 2019,
7-8 AM)
WITH 1,000
(23 Dec. 2019)
(24 Dec. 2019)
(28 Dec. 2019)
1Astro Gempak  2019 Final – live1.8mil (#No 1  on trending) 2.4mil (#No 1  on trending) 2.6mil (#No 1  on trending)
2.7mil (#No 2  on trending)
2Plussixzero Studio251k361k500k
3Astro Gempak  Naqiu Boboy Srikandi Cintaku260k332k376k
4Dantiub64  210k
5Nota Band
6Sheikh Anuar 143k165k
7Din Rizan67k91k143k
8Atika Wahid32k85k109k
10Encik Ery  80k
11ELD Production33k 34k
4.3k 32k
13Slee 22k24k
16MP Channel  14k
17Syndicate Music Rec  13k
18Putra Gegar
19Zack Kcaz 7.1k11k
20Abieku Nanoku  4.8k
21Berita sensasi viral  3.7k
22Duo beradik  3.1k
23Whisper gaming  2.3k
24Farith Studio  1.4k
25Khaider Bustami  1.1k
 Total Within
2,663,080 4,758,400
1Endhy TK13K51k84k
2Indo React38k 46k
3Nephi Acaling (Philipinnes)3.5k 36k
4Kreativiti Indonesia25k24k32k
5Nephi Axe (Philipinnes)1k 11k
6Wow reacts  (Russian)2.7k 7.1k
 Total Outside
83,200 216,100
 GRAND TOTAL2,746,280 4,974,500

The numerical comparison shows that the non-nasheed total of 5-day scores exceeded the nasheed 24-month scores by 3,686,901 views or 286%. Imagine what the gap will be in 730 days for the non-nasheed. An epic 40,000%?

Even if we reduce the figure to a conservative estimate, a difference of 4,000% would still be astonishing. 

The internet has shifted the playing field of social influence dramatically, to say the least. Digital savvy young people go through their daily life on digital steroids. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Whatsapp and the like become their language of interaction, lifestyle and lifeway.

That digital communication, engagement and interaction become even more universal  given the fact that songs are indeed colour blind:

This Russian reviewer doesn’t speak nor understand the Malay language but through Youtube,
he gets what the Malay singer Naqiu means with his rendering of ‘Srikandi Cintaku’.

Social Influencers in Malaysia by comparison 

Currently, young social influencers of the Malaysian entertainment industry come in different groups. There are the #BBDU which in Malay stands for Budak Baru Dah Up or already-established-young artists and celebrities such as Khai Bahar, Neelofa, Siti Nurdiana, and Hael Hussaini some of whom rise to stardom after appearing and winning in nation-wide contests such as Anugerah Juara Lagu (AJL).

The BBDU capacity for social influencing has been phenomenal, to say the least:

Then there are the #BBNUs which in Malay stands for Budak Baru Nak Up or just-starting-to-rise young artists such as those in late teens or early twenties graduating from Astro’s newly conceived regional contests such as the Big Stage:

It will not be a stretch of the imagination to say that the young entertainers are giving other social influencers in Malaysia a hard time to compete with:

For one, business motives will ensure that entertainment programmes like Gegar Vaganza (GV) will continue to dominate Malaysian Malay Muslim public life and with it the instant making of new icons given the compelling digital power of social media:

For another, Malay Muslim entertainment icons are able to play their own role in ammar makruf, thus convincing society that they are a force-for-the-good to be reckoned with:

Da’wah OOTB vis a vis Malay Muslim entertainers – the way forward

The world of entertainment will not cease to be a field of the rat race and all the bad and the ugly that comes with public exposure and public influencing. But so will politics and even conventional da’wah.

It’s up to the OOTB Daies and mujtahidun to mobilise the power for good, to neutralise the power for bad, and to mediate the grey areas in between, that come with the unstoppable rise and reign of entertainers as social influencers in the Digital Age of the 21st century Malaysia. 

If they succeed, they will be part of the solution to making Malay Muslim entertainers and entertainment industry a model of resurgent Islam for the world.

One fact remains: that there is no turning back to the non-digital era.

Contributed to us by Prof. Dr. Amriah Buang

President, Interactive Muslimah Association (IMAN), Malaysia

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Best Fikrah team. Read all her contributed articles here.

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Quranic Quote: “He’s done a Lot for Da’wah. That Thing that He did is Only a Small Evil.”