Internet Access and the Potential in Facilitating Online Political Communication of Disabled

Nurul Hasfi Hasfi, Joyo NS Gono, Wiwid Noor Rakhmad
2020 Jurnal Aspikom  
Internet was conceived by many researchers as a medium that was capable of resolving the social exclusion of groups of people with diffability. The internet penetration rate in Indonesia that always increased ideally should be a sphere for people with diffability to realize an inclusive election. However, in Indonesia, the dominant group, in this case, non-diffabled, were still taking control of the virtual space. The research aimed to understand the potential of the internet as a medium for
more » ... as a medium for online political participation of groups with diffability. By applying a case study in the context of the 2018 Gubernatorial Election of Central Java, this research conducted in-depth interviews with people with diffabilities, the election organizers (KPU, BAWASLU) and educational institutions. The research found that particular groups of people with diffability (vision impairment, hearing loss, and mild intellectual retardation) in Semarang had had access to the internet. However, internet access had not yet provided the diffabled group access to the online communication process. In other words, the internet had not figured in being assistive technology (AT) for realizing online political participation for the diffabled. The leading possible cause was the digital divide that was contributed by both the internal problems, such as skepticism to politics, anti-polarization in the online discussions, and the external problems, including the low quality of the internet literacy for the diffabled. Abstrak Teknologi termasuk internet disebut para peneliti sebagai medium yang mampu mengatasi ekslusi sosial (social exclusion) kelompok difabel. Penetrasi internet di Indonesia semakin meningkat seharusnya menjadi ruang bagi kelompok difabel untuk mewujudkan pemilu inklusif. Namun, dalam konteks Indonesia kelompok dominan non-difabel masih menguasai ruang virtual. Tulisan ini ingin memahami potensi internet sebagai sarana partisipasi politik online kelompok difabel. Dengan menggunakan metode studi kasus dalam konteks Pilgub Jateng 2018, penelitian ini melakukan wawancara mendalam dengan difabel, penyelenggara pemilu (KPU, Bawaslu) dan institusi pendidikan di Kota Semarang. Penelitian ini menemukan difabel (fisik dan grahita ringan) di Kota Semarang telah memiliki akses terhadap internet, namun akses internet ternyata belum memberikan difabel akses berkomunikasi. Artinya, internet belum berfungsi sebagai Assistive Technology (AT) untuk sarana partisipasi politik online karena adanya digital divide yang bersumber dari masalah internal seperti skeptisme difabel terhadap politik; anti-polarisasi dalam diskusi politik online dan eksternal yakni karena rendahnya literasi internet bagi difabel. Kata Kunci: akses internet, difabel, komunikasi politik online, pemilu inklusif 
doi:10.24329/aspikom.v5i1.468 fatcat:znxdqgfenvgopn6paelxbn6iaa