We have been experiencing waves of change since 2003. We have changed our political system, and we are now trying to change our economic system. We know a lot of Maldivians do not like 'change'. It's not only limited to Maldivians. It's human nature. That's the reason why change is often associated with resistance. We prefer stability and continuity over change. Recently, the university, where I am studying, has centralized its IT administration which was previously operated through faculty-based IT units. Since then, both students and academics have been complaining about the difficulties associated with this change. But one thing I am sure of is however much we complain, the university is not going to revert back its plans. Because, they know that there will be resistance to any change.
Last week, one of the hottest headlines in our media was about the new logo introduced by the government to promote Maldives as a country of destination. The new logo was welcomed by the Maldivians with a lot of criticism. Ordinary people and politicians across the political spectrum have leveled criticism against the new logo, ranging from aesthetic and technical aspects to the marketing aspects to the way the whole project was handled. Even some people in the inner circle of the government have criticized the logo and the way the project was carried out. I am totally in agreement with some of these criticisms. The government should have carried out the project in a more open and transparent manner. It should have opened it for Maldivians and used it as a platform to test our local artists' creativity. It should also have made short-listed logos public and provided opportunities for them to express their views on the logos before the official endorsement of a particular logo.
However, I feel that even if the government had done all this, the outcome would have still been the same. Because, first, there are people who have made a habit of going against whatever the government does; second, there will always be resistance to any change; third, there is no one single tagline or a logo that can represent the features of our unique tourism industry. I feel that the mayhem that has been created by the controversial logo has given credibility to itself and it has received a reasonable level of publicity in this critical launching phase, which wouldn't have been possible without this controversy.
As with any other change, the resistance to the introduction of the new tourism logo will subside and it will be accepted by the public over time. It is very unlikely that the government will back down, but over time we will change our perception about the new logo.