Has the Indonesian electoral roll been manipulated? Have the civil service and security forces been mobilised in support of particular candidates? Dr Dave McRae chats to Titi Anggraini and Dr Fritz Edward Siregar about these claims and more in Talking Indonesia.

It’s time again for Indonesia at Melbourne to take a short break over the Christmas and New Year period. Here we reflect on some of our favourite and most popular blog posts and podcasts from 2018. We look forward to seeing you again when we return in mid-January.

What does the 1965 violence have to do with Ratna Sarumpaet? Hellena Souisa examines two incidents that demonstrate how serious the problem of hoaxes has become for Indonesian politics.

Many Indonesians are concerned about the damage that hoaxes and so-called “fake news” are doing to social cohesion. Professor Ariel Heryanto writes that it is difficult to find a more powerful hoax than the story of the 30 September Movement, which has provided the basis for numerous other nonsensical and dangerous hoaxes.

Given the partisan nature of most mainstream media, many Indonesians are now turning to alternative online sources, many of which encourage sectarianism. Dr Ross Tapsell writes that Indonesia is in dire need of a strong, independent public media that could provide an alternative to privately owned conglomerates and the spread of hoax news and disinformation.

Fake news has become a major concern in Indonesia. But what can be done to address the problem? Is the proliferation of fake news an indication of the increasing polarisation of Indonesian society? Charlotte Setijadi discusses these issues and more with Ignatius Haryanto in the latest episode of Talking Indonesia.

Fake news and hoaxes are now a ubiquitous part of the public conversation online in Indonesia. Dr Airlangga Pribadi Kusman writes that when political engagement is based on lies or manipulated data, public participation in the political process may end up harming, rather than strengthening, democracy.