Talking Indonesia: digital attacks on activists and the media

Recent years in Indonesia have seen repeated instances of the hacking of activists’ social media accounts, the defacing of media websites, as well as political influencers and automated bots attacking critics and promoting a pro-government line. On top of these digital attacks, the Indonesian government also twice throttled or shut down the internet in 2019, first in Jakarta and then in Papua.


Digital attacks on activists and the media raise a host of questions: who is responsible for these attacks, what effect do they have on Indonesian democracy, and what reforms are needed to better protect Indonesian internet users?


In this week’s Talking Indonesia podcast, Dr Dave McRae discusses these issues with Damar Juniarto, executive director of the Southeast Asia Freedom of Expression Network (SAFEnet).


The Talking Indonesia podcast is co-hosted by Dr Dave McRae from the University of Melbourne’s Asia Institute, Dr Jemma Purdey from Monash University, Dr Dirk Tomsa from La Trobe University, and Dr Charlotte Setijadi from the Singapore Management University.


Look out for a new Talking Indonesia podcast every fortnight.  Catch up on previous episodes here, subscribe via iTunes or listen via your favourite podcasting app.


Photo by Wahyu Putro A for Antara.


Dave McRae is a Senior Lecturer at the Asia Institute in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Melbourne. He is also an Associate at the Centre for Indonesian Law, Islam and Society.