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this article will be written by someone who made some bad experiences on the island. it is unbelievable that he uses wikitravel for his private probs. maybe he lost something in a taxi e.g. but it is just horrible to read. please delete this article or change it into a useful documentary!

Please Wikitravel:Plunge forward and change it! Jpatokal 19:39, 14 August 2006 (EDT)

The state of Bintan[edit]

I just wondered why you removed some of my recent edits, and put back in the part on prostitution etc? You are aware that much has been done to reduce this in recent years? All girlie bars in town have closed etc etc, the guy who ran most of these things will loose his diplomatic immunity in a couple of months, and will be prosecuted for suspected murder, and the only remaining girlie place has now been moved to km 24, well outside town, in a pragmatic recognition that prostitution is a fact of life.

As somebody who has run a fully local business there for the last 8 years - all my staff are locals - and who truly loves this island, which has turned into one of the most democratic regions of all of Indonesia, and boasts one of the richest histories in this region, I just don't feel it's right to emphasize the hookers, which nowadays only make up a very small portion of the overall "activities" available. Why not mention the fact that Bintan has a unique "people's union", where everyone can join for $ 1 per month and then enjoys free legal help in case of (the ever-more rare) government abuse? Or the fact that the island has democratically decided to stop sand exports to Singapore, using its new-found autonomy, so gracefully awarded by Gus Dur and emphasized by SBY? These are all remarkable things, contrary to most people's perceptions of Indonesia, and therefore worthy of mention.

My clients often go to Tanjung Pinang as well, and have never been courted by prostitutes. As an ordinary tourist, it is very easy to miss them. These days you really have to go and look for them.

Of course, I do have a commercial interest in promoting the real Bintan (and I must admit I have little love for Bintan resorts) but I firmly believe that the edits I made reflect the recent developments accurately - I would not have put them in otherwise

I respect the original author (you?) in the sense that Lobo etc receives a plug - I like the guy too and used to stay with him as a back packer way back then (but I did almost my entire PhD studies in a hammock at Yasin's bungalows during 1991 - 1994 :-)), but the truth is that East coast Bintan has radically changed too (I'm not sure Lobo is still around actually!), and that it is simply no longer a back packer beach. The back-packer resorts are now - for better or worse - vastly in the minority. So why not inform people accordingly? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by MarcVanLoo (talkcontribs)

The whitewashing was done by anonymous IPs, so sorry if I was a little too suspicious; I've toned down the prostitution comments. However, as a business owner (of Loola, presume?), you do have a bit of a conflict of interest here (please see eg. Welcome, business owners and Don't tout), and as a travel guide where the traveller comes first, Wikitravel is not really interested in sand exports or people's unions.
And no, I was not the original author of the Trikora article. Please feel free to update it where out of date. Jpatokal 23:48, 17 November 2008 (EST)

The anonymous IP was probably me, I only discovered the login option a few days ago - these are my first wiki days. I am very aware of the conflict of interest, and, as a scientist, I totally support the democratic peer-reviewed structure of Wiki. I have therefore not made any attempt to hide who I am. Nonetheless, I have not only added my own resort, but Agro beach resort and Nikoi and Pangkil island as well. Together, we are the main and most visited resorts on the East coast, and at close to 100 visitors a week on average, LooLa is the most visited resort on east coast, topping quite a few of the Bintan resorts. The comments I've made on these resorts on the Wiki stand up to public scrutiny and provide valuable information to the traveller. Why should the visitor of Wikitravel get to hear all the details on the Bintan resorts, but not of the eco-friendly local style resorts on the East coast? Moreover, as somebody who knows Bintan intimately since 1991, I feel I have some valid contributions to make - having taken my interest so far so as to open my own business should not automatically disqualify me, only if I say nonsense, or my comments are blatantly biased.

There's one place where you can cover your resort, which is the listing of your resort in Trikora, and that should be kept down to a few factual sentences. If you want to do longer, personal reviews etc, that's what is for. Jpatokal 08:25, 18 November 2008 (EST)
I must disagree with you that travellers have no interest in the issues of sand export. For eco-tourists, such as many of our clients, the issue is fascinating: The digging of sand brought not only severe environmental degradation to the island, loss of jungle and loss of coastal fisheries through sediments, but the combination of the stagnant water pits left behind by sand digging on the one hand, and the Malaria-infected workers from other parts of Indonesia imported to work on the Bintan resorts on the other, conspired to create a Malaria epidemic that the island has only recently brought under control. All such issues have an obvious significant impact on tourism in general, and are of interest to eco-travellers such as myself. The fact that people power put a stop to these sand exports (overnight doubling the price of sand in Singapore, i.e taking on some powerful economic forces!) is a hopeful sign of where the island and the country at large are headed. I would imagine that the typical Wikitravel reader should find such information interesting and relevant!? marcvanloo
It's still tangential information, but give it a shot on Bintan#Understand or as an infobox, if you can squeeze it down to a concise paragraph or two. There's a lot more to the sand ban than just "people power" though, see eg. [1]. Jpatokal 08:25, 18 November 2008 (EST) ... Not much more really: the people in Riau were the ones who pushed this thing into existence, and some big shots may have tied to get some extra political mileage out of it. But no matter what extradition treaties Singapore signs or how much it pays for sand, the ban will not be lifted - because of local pressure.Marcvanloo 00:41, 19 November 2008 (EST)

Hello Jani,

Thanks for signature tip, but, on another note ....

Before you delete my entries, could you please check with me first? You have assumed the authority of a moderator and final decider here but on what basis exactly?

Do you have current experience with Bintan or was your last visit a couple of years ago? You know exactly who I am, and on what authority I speak, but I do not know who you are.

The section on eco-tourism should not have been deleted. The fact that LooLa is the main resort engaging in this is a matter of fact. But if, after reading this section, other resorts decide to follow suit, well that's perfect, and then they can add their stuff to this section. Eco-tourism is a valid point of interest, and should remain on the page.

Furthermore, you have added value judgments that aren't yours to make, such as saying that Nikoi and Pangkil are East coast's "best" resorts.

The Bintan page, as it is, remain highly unbalanced. The prostitution bits should simply be deleted, since they are no longer relevant. "Toning down", as you have decided, is not sufficient. Would you start a page on Singapore by saying that the town used to be famous for transvestite prostitution? It's simply no longer an issue.

If you think it is, please give reasons first, don't just undo my entries!

Sorry mate, but I'm a bit ticked off, especially since I didn't make copies of my entries and now will have to do some again ;-)

PS. Section on sleep in Trikora is well-done. No issues with that - good job.

You don't need to rewrite anything, every edit you (and I, and anybody

else,) has ever made to the Bintan article can be found right here:
There are no "moderators" or "final deciders" on Wikitravel. (I am an

administrator, but that just means I can delete entire articles, and doesn't affect article content at all.) You can erase all my edits if you want, but I can tell you that if you do, somebody else will come along and restore them: the eco-tourism section is inappropriate because all Wikitravel articles follow set templates, and "Eco-Tourism" is not one of the standard headings (Get in, Eat, Sleep, Do, etc).
Fair call on the "best" vs "expensive" bit, your latest set of edits to

Trikora was exactly the kind of thing we're looking for. And for what it's worth, Wikitravel's Singapore article does cover the (still very much alive) prostitution industry, and Singapore/Bugis talks about its transvestite "Boogie Street" history. Jpatokal 05:18, 19 November 2008 (EST)