Yogyakarta, October 28th 2023—Coinciding with Youth Pledge Day, the Diskusi Komunikasi Magister UGM (Diskoma) held a webinar entitled “Youth Political Participation and Communication Ahead of the 2024 Election”. Discussions regarding the 2024 Election cannot be separated from the existence of young people as the largest voter group as well as a group that is active in criticizing local and national political dynamics. This was confirmed by Dr. Rahayu, M.Si, M.A., Chair of the Communication Science Master’s Study Program in UGM. “Young people need to be highlighted [because] they determine the future direction of Indonesian politics,” said Rahayu in his speech on Saturday (28/10).
This ninth edition of Discoma presents Dr. Adhianty Nurjanah, S.Sos, M.Si, Lecturer in Communication Sciences, Muhammadiyah University of Yogyakarta; and Zainuddin Muda Z. Monggillo, S.I.Kom., M.A., Lecturer in Communication Sciences, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, UGM. Both speakers agreed that young people will play a significant role in the 2024 elections, especially because this is the age group closest to the internet and social media. Adhianty said that for the first time young groups (millennials and Gen Z) would dominate Indonesia’s democratic party. “I see that with the existence of various social media, young people have become very critical,” said Adhianty. “I feel that Gen Z has great potential in how they monitor the stages of elections in Indonesia. “Because sometimes they are spontaneous, which means there are still many Gen Z who care about the election,” added Adianty.
Research conducted by Diskoma shows that there is a tendency for political apathy among some young people. On the other hand, the existence of social media also influences young people’s exposure to politics, including political figures and parties. In line with the research findings, Zainuddin Monggillo revealed several “important joint agendas” regarding the process of monitoring, giving opinions, and participating in the 2024 elections. First, Zainuddin said that checking or verifying facts is very important amidst the onslaught of information. Second, young people need to be smart and wise in using social media. Third, instead of remaining silent, young people should fight negative and false content with literacy and education. Finally, Zainuddin advised young people to empower their voices, synergize and collaborate. “Because this era is getting easier, we also hope that it will be clearer for young people to see and choose,” concluded Zainuddin.