Social media is democracy`s fifth pillar: Communication ministry

"Social media has become an influential instrument in the lives of the public," Niken said.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Director General of Information and Public Communications from the Ministry of Communication and Informatics Niken Widiastuti has said social media is the fifth pillar of democracy.

He noted it follows the press, dubbed the fourth pillar, in terms of balancing the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government.

"Social media has become an influential instrument in the lives of the public," she remarked at the Indonesian Public Relations Association Coffee Morning in the Adhyana Auditorium, Wisma ANTARA, Jakarta, on Friday.

Niken added that social media had become a platform that encouraged public participation in the nations development, saying she hoped for even greater use of social media in a way that boosts the positive growth of the publics involvement.

Information circulates quickly on social media. It is instantly uploaded and shared, making it easy for people to become overwhelmed by the abundance of information, she continued.

"For example, 90 different individuals can publish 10 stories at a time, without any background verifications. Oftentimes, in the midst of a busy day, people find it hard to separate valid information from misleading details," she stressed.

Social media is hoped to provide a platform for positive reinforcement in delivering relevant information as well as educating and supporting the public, she stated.

Niken acted as the keynote speaker at the Coffee Morning Forum, organized to commemorate the Associations 44th birthday and named "Social Media and PR Trends 2017."

Alongside her, other speakers included Managing Director of Ogilvy PR Marianne Admardantine, Head of Corcom Indosat Ooredoo Deva Rachman, CEO of ANTARA Indonesia News Agency Meidyatama Suryodiningrat, and Director Digital & Technology Burson Masteller Harry Deje.(*)