Riset: Partnering Community and Mainstream Media for MDGs

Riset ini dilakukan sudah cukup lama –awal tahun lalu (2008). Karena blog ini dimaksudkan untuk arsip online, saya letakkan disini executive summary riset yang saya kerjakan. Informasi selanjutnya bisa didapat di: http://www.amic.org.sg/pdf/Partnering_Community.pdf.

(Researcher: Shita Laksmi)

The researcher found it difficult to identify projects where community based media contents are disseminated via the mainstream media. Thus, an ethnographic research strategy was adopted wheere carefully selected NGO and media representatives were interviewed to assess the situation.

Through such interviews a number of projects have been documented in the report. One of which is a project implemented by the Institute for Ecosoc Rights in collaboration with one of the leading independent newspapers in the country the Kompas newspaper. This project focuses on migrant labourers, malnutrition and hunger, and urban poor.

Ecosoc began forming a network of civil society personalities and journalists in 2000 and started lobbying Kompas by meeting with people there and discussing the issues. After these meetings Kompas facilitated a focus group discussion on the plight of urban poor, which resulted in the newspaper giving a grant to Ecosoc to do more research on specific communities. This resulted in Kompas publishing news items on the urban poor and malnutrition more frequently. In 2005 Kompas started developing a discussion group designed to nurture young writers from diverse backgrounds to write about these issues. This continuing relationship between Ecosoc and Kompas where regular reports on malnutrition in particular has attracted attention of other agencies who now invite Ecosoc to talk to their constituencies about these issues.

Komite Kemanusiaan Indonesia (KKI) is a NGO which tries to work with the mainstream media to communicate the issue of HIV-AIDS and safe sex, especially to the young people. They have been working in collaboration with Family Health International (FHI)/ Aksi Stop Aids (ASA) in this regard. They organised consultative meetings with media organisations to spread the message. As a result of this consultation, KKI provided contents to two youth-oriented radio station in Jakarta – Hard Rock FM and MTV Sky. They also developed a long relationship with Human Health magazine in providing contents for them until the magazine folded up in March 2006.

Women’s Health Foundation (YKP) have for many years been focusing their efforts to persuade the government to revise health law and one of the barriers they have faced is to disseminate information to women on the importance of such law reform. Private television channel SCTV and YKP have recently begun a collaboration, but, initially SCTV has told them that they did not have a women’s programme to air their material. However, after much consultations and exchange of information, SCTV invited YKP to provide information and contents to their Friday news programme and have given them 3 minutes since December 2007. The programme is broadcast at a time when most of the men are in mosque and most women watch television.

All the three NGOs who are working on these media projects have expressed similar views, in that, they are able to put the issue in perspective, show what are the important aspects of the issues and try to give the media a different angle. However, there is no systematic audience research to judge its effectiveness, they rely on spontaneous feedback.

In November 2007, at its 8th anniversary celebrations, private channel Metro TV handed out 8 awards to companies and local government bodies which have helped to improve the quality of life for Indonesians. These awards covered most of the areas targeted by the MDGs. According to Deputy Chied News Editor of Metro TV, Retno Shanti Ruwyastuti, the idea of mainstreaming the MDG’s came from the owner of the network, who believes that companies have a social responsibility to perform. Metro TV has also introduced a regular programme “Save Our Nation” and within it is a sub-theme “Save Our Nation through MDGs”. This programme is broadcast on prime time on Wednesday nights.

With community radio expanding rapidly in Indonesia, the researcher spoke to a number of community radio practitioners to gauge whether they were addressing the MDGs and if they are able to collaborate with mainstream radio in this regard. Budhi Hermanto, Coordinator of the Community Radio Network in Central Java says that MDGs were seen as a discourse of the NGO sector and government elites. It was seen as too elite and needs repackaging for the community radio sector. Gani Rahman, Coordinator of Community Radio Network in West Java argues that the agenda of community radio and mainstream radio are different, and hence difficult for them to collaborate.


  • March 30, 2009