The Important Role of the Press in Creating Peaceful Elections in 2024
By : Garvin Reviano )*
The government encourages members of the press to participate in creating quality journalism, including reporting on the 2024 Simultaneous General Election. The press has a very important role in creating a peaceful and dignified 2024 election. The press is also responsible for providing accurate, objective and balanced information regarding candidates, political parties and election-related issues. By presenting correct information, the press can help voters make more informed and fact-based decisions.
Apart from that, the press can also help increase voter participation by providing information about the importance of elections, how to register as a voter, and the rights and obligations of voters. By encouraging active participation, the press can help create more democratic elections. To convey the voice of society, the press functions as an intermediary between society and the government. By providing space for public opinion and views, the press can help expose issues that society considers important, thereby encouraging open and constructive discussion.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Communication and Information (Menkominfo), Budi Arie Setiadi, said that as the fourth pillar of democracy, journalism has an important role in creating peaceful elections in 2024. Apart from that, his party also invites members of the press to present factual, accurate and useful election-related news. , and avoid reporting that solely emphasizes sensation.
Budi Arie sees that the presence of digital platforms has changed people’s patterns of consuming news. These changes have created a growing gap in public trust between mainstream media and social media. So currently there is a tendency for public interest in mass media reporting compared to increasingly attractive social media content. Therefore, the role of the press is very important in providing educational and accurate information, as well as providing understanding regarding important issues related to the importance of maintaining peace ahead of the 2024 elections.
Indonesia is currently entering a political year and it is hoped that the situation will continue to be conducive through healthy democratic processes and stages. So that it does not harm the nation and state, especially among the community. Conditions of safety and peace can be created by preventing fake news and not being easily provoked by incitement by irresponsible individuals. So it can create chaos and division in society.
The public has a very important role in being aware of hoaxes in various media during the election. Being wary of hoaxes is a collective task to ensure that general elections run safely and with integrity and that voters can make correct decisions or information. Apart from that, the press also has a responsibility to overcome and refute false information or hoaxes. Fact-checking and critical reporting can help people differentiate between facts and opinions or hoaxes.
Press personnel in the context of peaceful elections involve individuals who work in the fields of journalism and mass media who have an important role in creating a conducive climate for fair and peaceful elections. So, to make this happen, the press can provide educational information about the election system, voting procedures, and the rights and obligations of voters. Because this is important to increase people’s understanding of the democratic process.
Apart from that, the Chair of the Press Council, Ninik Rahayu, said that what caused the riots in the press room was, among other things, news that contained misinformation and disinformation, but it was still being reported. He emphasized that the media plays a central role in shaping public views, which does not only depend on decisions from the executive, judiciary and legislature. Therefore, complex interactions with the media can significantly influence people’s ways of thinking and views substantially.
Ninik also invited all media in Indonesia to maintain democracy so that people can still participate and be ready to voice their opinions and expressions. So that the synergy between the press and the public can be realized well and security conducive to the election can be maintained.
In the news or information distribution sector, social media plays a key role in news distribution. Therefore, all parties can use this channel to support the delivery of peace information. This includes opening space for public debate on various issues, such as legal processes and others, as part of the intellectual empowerment of society.
In facing a political year like today, it is hoped that the media will not produce news content that can trigger polarization in society. The press can play a constructive role in building public awareness, encouraging healthy dialogue, and ensuring that political reporting advances common interests and democratic stability.
Press synergy is very important in realizing peaceful elections. By working together and supporting each other, the press can create a balanced information environment, provide better understanding to the public, and monitor the course of elections. In addition, through responsible, independent and professional involvement of members of the press, it is hoped that the election can take place peacefully, fairly and transparently. And the press also has a strategic role in shaping public opinion and helping create an environment that supports a healthy democratic process.
)* The author is an observer of domestic politics