Meld’s top stories of 2011

2011 is drawing to a close, and what better time to look back on the year that’s been? From Bersih to uni grades, Namewee to the ASEAN games, we’re taking a look at the stories, people and issues that mattered most to you in 2011.

Bersih 2.0 rally in Melbourne, July 2011. Photo Shaun Lee.
Bersih 2.0 rally in Melbourne, July 2011. Photo Shaun Lee.



  1. Empty threat? Malaysian gov warns students not to attend Bersih rallies in Australia
  2. Malaysians take a stand in Melbourne for Bersih 2.0
  3. ASEAN Student Games 2011: Indonesia and Malaysia win Basketball tournament

Back in July, hundreds of Malaysians gathered at Melbourne’s Federation Square to join their voices to the global chorus demanding clean and fair elections in Malaysia.

As supporters of the Bersih movement took to the stage to speak, news of the use of force to supress their fellow protestors in Kuala Lumpur prompted chants of disapproval from Melbourne’s Malaysian diaspora.

Meld’s website hits skyrocketed around the time of the protest, cementing in our minds the value of a dedicated site for international students to get the news that matters to you.

Meld’s partnership with the ASEAN Student Games was another rewarding experience, with our coverage of the victories of the Malaysian men’s and Indonesian women’s basketball teams proving extremely popular.


Meld's Marcella Purnama explored the idea that good grades may not fulfil you as much as you may think, in a highly popular discussion piece in May
Meld’s Marcella Purnama explored the idea that getting good grades might not be as fulfilling as you think, in a highly popular discussion piece in May.


Discussion and Advice

  1. How important are grades to you?
  2. Preparing to study in Melbourne: what every international student needs to know
  3. Working in Australia: visas, taxes, minimum pay and rights

With the majority of our reporters being current or former international students, we have had the pleasure of publishing many insightful discussion pieces this year on the overseas student experience.

One such article, which proved hugely popular, was Marcella Parnama’s May article on the importance (or lack thereof) of grades. In the piece, the Meld reporter and Melbourne University student explored the idea that a preoccupation with good grades can distract us from more rewarding paths of learning and discovery.

Meld has also been very pleased to bring international students practical advice over the year, from what to pack when you first leave home to what your rights and obligations are as an employee of an Australian business.


Meld's guide to late night eats in Melbourne has proved hugely popular
Meld’s guide to late night eats in Melbourne has proved hugely popular.



  1. Late night eats in Melbourne
  2. Food and drink: Exploring Lygon St, Carlton
  3. Save the date: MUOSS Night Market 2011

It’s official: Meld readers are a hungry bunch. And you’ve certainly devoured our restaurant guides and reviews with joyous gusto!

It seems many of you are night owls, delighting in I-Hua Lim’s guide to late night eateries in Melbourne, which we published back in June. Meld’s guide to Lygon Street cafes and restaurants – part of our International Students’ Guide to Carlton series – also received a lot of hits, as did a March article on the Melbourne University international student night market.

Stay tuned for many more articles to satisfy the foodie within you as Meld reporters continue to hit Melbourne’s best eating spots in 2012. It’s a hard job, but someone’s got to do it. Sigh.


Malaysian rapper, filmmaker and political activist Namewee was in Melbourne for Mardeka, and to launch his debut film Nasi Lemak 2.0.
Malaysian rapper, filmmaker and political activist Namewee was in Melbourne for Merdeka, and to launch his debut film Nasi Lemak 2.0.



  1. Namewee serves up debut film Nasi Lemak 2.0
  2. Korean dance sensation Black Queen in Melbourne
  3. Indian Film Festival 2011 highlights

Many of Asia’s best musicians, dancers, actors and filmmakers headed to our shores in 2011, bringing international students and taste of home and showing locals what the region’s entertainment scene has to offer.

Malaysian rapper and political activist Namewee headed down under in September, where he caught up with Meld’s Sumisha Naidu to chat about corruption and censorship – and music – in his homeland.

Also gracing Australian shores in the latter half of this year were sexy Korean dance troupe Black Queen, and Bollywood’s Vidya Balan, who popped over in March for the Indian Film Festival.

What issues were most important to you in 2011? Share in the comments box below.

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