Politics and Government Studies Department UGM organised a talk show themed Elections in Digital Era: Opportunities and Challenges on Saturday (20/10) at Faculty of Social and Political Sciences UGM.
The talk show presented Planning Director of Joko Widodo-Ma’ruf Amin campaign team, Aria Bima, and coordinator of Prabowo Subianto-Sandiaga Uno campaign team, Dahnil Anzar Simanjuntak.
Dean of Faculty of Social and Political Sciences UGM, Dr. Erwan Agus Purwanto, said the talk show was a form of university role in giving political education and to prove that university was not anti-politics.
“Active engagement needs to be encouraged because during this time there is the assumption that universities may not talk about politics. Through this event we get to know what agendas are offered while students may get involved and voice their aspiration on what most important agenda to the country,” he said.
The event was attended not only by UGM academics but also high school students. Inviting young voters, the talk show gives political education to them to be actively engaged in creating a conducive political condition.
“In this digital era, I hope students to be involved in activism, but not get into problems such as spreading hoax. With a quality election, our democracy can have a better quality,” said Erwan.
Similarly, chairman of general election commission, Arief Budiman, said that each electoral candidate would vie for voters from among millenial voters that account as high as 79 million. Hence, online and social media are one of the main means used by the young voters to get information. Arief called on the young voters to fight against money politics, black campaign, and issues that may disintegrate the nations.
“Never do money politics, don’t spread hoax, and don’t use negative issues on race and faith that may disintegrate us,” he said.
Related to hoaxes that are rampant during the run-up to the elections, Aria Bima said that this was unethical and illogical to be used as it would damage the nationhood foundation.
He admitted amidst the fast technology changes, regulations are often delayed to be able to catch up with those issues. So, he said the society needs to build first awareness on using the social media wisely.
“Potential for disintegration due to racial and religious problems is not just in the social media but also in the real world. For example, a regional election case even still hurts until today, so we need to build awareness, because regulations cannot yet resolve that kind of issue completely,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dahnil Anzar said changes that brought different things to us ought not to be seen as a terrifying case. The millenial voters, he said, ought to be able to use logic and rationale in social media.
“Millenial is not about the shoes you wear or the bike you ride, but the brains and heart,” he said.