Unofficial Entry

As the title says, it's an unofficial entry. I was pretty excited when seeing the announcement of the competition, but there're two turn-offs : The deadline is the day after tomorrow, and ones registering their entries should be an SMP, SMA, or University students in Indonesia, which means I'm out of the category straightaway. And I've just realized these after finishing the whole essay, so let me just share this. I have no intention to win anyway, I just love to write.

Online all the time: Youth & New Media. The impact of social networking and the online world on Indonesian culture

Indonesia is an exquisite, gigantic archipelago nation with many vivid and rich culture. With incalculable number of islands (as there are certainly undiscovered and non-inhabited ones), it deserves to be on top of every traveler's list. But many of us keep questioning on why the reality is too far from how it should be, with many of our culture being threatened, our resources being harshly exploited, and our people suffering with no access to clean water, education, and healthcare, our very basic needs.

But before we go too far from our national boundaries, let's take a look at what we, teenagers have done so far. Many members of the society claim technology as a menace to our cultural practices, which is partly true, considering increasing number of teenagers preferring struck on their notebook screen, rather than going out watching a Wayang performance. It's neither neighboring foreigners nor other country's civilians, it's us threatening our own cultural practices.

Now let's put the devil side of technology aside, and take a deeper look : a lot of teenagers nowadays attempting efforts to acquaint Indonesian culture to the world, and some of them have even gone the extra miles. Kudos for them, and thanks to technology, who makes it all possible. Not only does it provide higher rate of the spread of the news, it helps us to reach "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika", or united in diversity in English (remember how IndonesiaUnite and Tari Pendet became trending topics for a while on a big social networking society, Twitter?).

And now let's clear the prejudice : development of a country and its preservation of its culture do not have to go on opposite tracks. Instead, they are interdependent in nature. How can we promote or even just to get information of our culture without the hands of technology? So let's not "lempar batu sembunyi tangan", or put the blame on other things without studying our own mistakes. And let's build our nation together, because we are indeed the seeds of the future. Shall we?

Indonesian Youth Conference

The Jakarta Globe

Terrant Books


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