Penulis, bersama sejumlah wartawan dan petugas media arus perdana dan harian, diundang oleh PAS untuk mendapatkan masukan (input) tentang sebab-sebab ketewasan parti itu dalam pilihan raya umum Mac 2004.
Berikut petikan coretan penulis blog terkenal Jeff Ooi tentang acara tersebut (PAS soul searching, 28 April 2004):
1. The Ulama Syndrome:
Malaysiakini columnist Fathi Aris Omar said PAS had failed to portray an image that appealed to the public, and that the rigid attitude of some of its ulama (religious scholars) had not helped either. Via Malaysiakini:
"The professionals in the party can be pragmatic, but their activities are restricted by the ulama. Some leaders issued strange policy statements that confused the public," he said. He said PAS could not continue to blame the media for biased reporting, but should instead find effective ways to reach out to voters.
2. PAS Trapped in 1999 Time-Warp:
An editor from a mainstream newspaper editor said PAS’ mistake was that it had been too aggressive and strident in its election campaign. Via Malaysiakini:
Basing his evaluation on observations during several PAS ceramah (political talks), he said party leaders had been speaking like it was "still 1999" when the reformasi spirit was very strong.
"It was strange that PAS adopted such an aggressive stand when the sentiment has changed so much since 1999. You hoped that the sentiment would help you through this election. Maybe that was your mistake," he said.
Fathi concurred to this point when he said:
"In 1999, independent or pro-opposition publications mushroomed ... 66 percent of these were sold around Kuala Lumpur. But this did not happen (this time). PAS should have taken steps to address the situation," he said.