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Prevent Hoaxes from the  2024 Election , People  Must  Check the Truth  of Information


By: Dina Kahyang Putri )* 

The public is obliged to check the truth of any information circulating, both on social media and direct information in order to ward off hoaxes about the upcoming 2024 election. Especially the hoax news that is widely circulating on the internet today, it would be nice for the whole community to be vigilant and careful.

            Hoax news has developed a lot in Indonesian society ahead of the upcoming 2024 elections, especially on social media. How not, social media has become an easy target for spreading various information, whether it is true or false. The truth or not of this information is sometimes not paid enough attention to by the public, so that they are easily eroded by false information. 

            Swallowing raw information circulating without checking first has a very extraordinary impact. Worse yet, this can lead to divisions between communities with one another. What’s more, it is at times like these that the atmosphere of the 2024 election contestation is heating up. We must be aware of this so that it does not happen. To prevent this, indeed it starts from ourselves. 

            The Ministry of Communication and Informatics (Kominfo) is directly involved in countering content that has the potential to contain hoaxes or fake news in the midst of a situation leading up to the upcoming 2024 political year. This serves as an anticipation of hoaxes and provides education to the public not to swallow the news or information that is circulating. The Director General of Informatics Applications, Semuel Abrijani Pangerapan said that Kominfo currently has a complaint service program. 

            In fact, from 2018 to February 2023, the Ministry of Communication and Information has blocked as many as 11,140 hoaxes in the digital space about political issues, which account for 8.37 percent of the total. The prevention efforts carried out by Kominfo are not repeated and can be stopped. 

            As for some of the characteristics of fake news circulating in society that must be known, namely one of them, including sources that are unclear or using anonymous sources to hide a truth. Then, there is irrelevance or inconsistency with confirmed facts. Another feature that makes it clear is that there is no official source that can be verified. Then, next, the title uses sensational words or language to steal the public’s attention, of course this is meant to be read by people who don’t know anything about it.

            As the political contestation year 2024 approaches, there is indeed a threat of hoax news spreading everywhere, but hoax news can be prevented. Kominfo has invited all members of the public to verify information before sharing it on social media. Indeed, we all cannot control someone to continue to control what is being spread, but one of the most effective ways is through ourselves to continue to be aware of the information that is coming. This means that, we must fortify ourselves with good literacy so as not to digest the hoax news that is spreading.

            Director General Semuel said that there was a specific strategy for controlling hoax news besides opening a complaint service, namely by implementing the Pentahelix strategy which focuses on three levels. The first is the upstream or upstream level which focuses on digital literacy, then the middle stream level focuses on platform collaboration and technology intervention, and the last is the downstream or downstream level on law enforcement. To realize this success, Kominfo asked various parties to participate and collaborate together. The government must ensure that digital regulation is safe for the public while still paying attention to human rights and creative freedom. 

            Meanwhile, it’s not only Kominfo who is trying to ward off hoax news ahead of the 2024 Election, the Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) is also worried about the same thing. For this reason, KPI also participates in narrowing the circulation of hoax and negative news through strengthening sustainable literacy programs for the community. The Chairperson of Commission I of the Indonesian Parliament, Meutya Hafid said that it is important for literacy to turn on personal censorship alarms or self of censorship. People should also be able to choose quality reading. 

            Member of the Central KPI, Mohamad Reza, said that KPI does not supervise media outside of broadcast media or online platforms. They are still working to manage content or programs on TV and radio. In fact, they have conducted research on TV and radio audiences. For this reason, KPI will also ensure quality improvements in two categories of broadcast programs. 

            On the other hand, Bogor Mayor Arya Sugiarto said that producing positive content could ward off hoaxes circulating. The younger generation has an important role in this matter because they also have to be the initiators of issues, spread issues, and make creative elections. So to ward off hoax news, collaboration from all levels of society is needed.

Thus, to ward off various hoax news circulating in the wider community, it is better if the community continues to strive for and increase digital literacy, educate themselves about the election process and understand the characteristics of hoax news or even report it to the authorities.

) *The author is a contributor to Persada Institute

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