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Being Viral Yet Wise Through Social Media

Social media has become a form of technology that can no longer be separated from people’s daily lives, especially in Indonesia. With this relatively new technology, everyone can easily access information and communicate. Today, the social media have become a global trend, especially with the development of smart devices (gadgets) connected to the Internet.

In Indonesia alone, according to a data from the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (Kemenkominfo), the current Internet users amount to 63 million people,  95 percent of whom are active users of social media.

With numerous facilities on offer, it is no wonder that the dissemination of information through social media has become increasingly prevalent today. The existence of netizens, as disseminators of news and information using various forms of social media, can no longer be separated from public life.

Awareness of the importance of using social media wisely has been chosen as the theme for the talkshow “Bincang Kita Hari Ini“/ Today’s Talk, with the headline “Going Viral Through Social Media “, organized by the Student Presidential Institution of Parahyangan Catholic University (LKM Unpar), through the Directorate General for Research and Strategic action. This event was held on March 3, 2017 in Unpar’s D3 Management auditorium, Bandung.

The event featured various speakers who are experienced in the field of social media management, namely Yayan Brilyana as the Head of Bandung Government Public Relations, Ciptadi Syachrani as the founder of InfoBDG, Donna Visca, and Nabila Gardena as social media influencers.

Benefits and Impacts

Ciptadi drew the analogy of social media as a mouthpiece, which connects one individual to another. The social media is nothing but an information channel, so that information can be disseminated. Anyone can use social media freely and not be limited, depending on the intentions owned. This potentially makes social media a positive thing, but it could also become destructive.

Meanwhile, Yayan said that the loss of culture talk or chat among people in Indonesia is caused by the use of social media. According to Yayan, the use of social media is certainly a positive phenomenon. However, we should still use direct verbal communication to build and develop the nation’s character.

In the view of Donna and Nabila, the social media make it easy for us to communicate, disseminate information, build networks of friends, share knowledge, inspiration, and so forth. If a person’s post is liked by many people that person will gain many followers (followers), and she/he can even make money from social media.

On the other hand, the use of social media can also have destructive effects, for example through the dissemination of inaccurate information or hoaxes ( hoax ), complicating socialization with people, cyber crime ( cyber crime )and, even pornography. The materials that enter social media would be difficult to remove because every user can easily share them without requiring permission. Therefore, Nabila recommended that users of social media filter materials that will be distributed wisely to sort out what it is worthy and unworthy for public consumption.

Reported by Kompas.com (20/2), in mid-February, the Bandung municipal government in cooperation with the Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) declared “Bandung Hantam Hoax” as a real action to block false information or lies that are potentially damaging the peace and social order in Indonesia.

The current development of social media brings a variety of positive impact on society. However, the benefits offered depends on how we use social media. There is no harm for us to share certain things, in the hope that what we share is favored by many people and will become viral. However, it should be noted that what we share will be viewed and judged by the public. By sharing information that is accurate, balanced, and beneficial, we prove ourselves as social media users who are wise and responsible.

 

Source: KOMPAS – Griya Ilmu (Tuesday, March 21, 2017)

 

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