Being an Integral Part of Indonesian: Memory of Chinese Indonesian Youth on Youtube

Authors: Daniel Susilo (Universitas Multimedia Nusantara Jakarta, Indonesia)
Speakers: Daniel Susilo
Strand: Ethnography of Communication
Session Type: General Session


Chinese Indonesian facing a long history of discrimination since the Dutch Colonial era. The 1965 Indonesian Coup strengthen the discrimination against the Chinese-Indonesian, including blurring their identity. During Suharto’s era, Chinese-Indonesian dominance on media was severely limited. Suharto restrained Chinese-Indonesian cinema and film industry ownership and allowed Indian-Indonesians to take over the ownership. Chinese-Indonesian producers got labelled as non-pribumi (non-Indonesian natives) who never really understood Indonesian values on film. After living a long history under Suharto’s authoritarianism, Chinese-Indonesian public presence in media also shifted to alternative media such as video-sharing websites and applications like YouTube.

Based on their atrocious experiences in the past, Chinese Indonesians became closed off and afraid to show their identity of Chinese background.  During the 1998 turmoil, many properties were signed with writings like “Muslim-owned” or “native-owned” on the storefront or their houses to state that they were not owned by Chinese Indonesians. Presenting a Chinese-Indonesian identity became a big mistake (trouble) in public areas at that time. This paper would to analyzing the recent identity among Chinese-Indonesian younger on YouTube. As a media alternative, YouTube is one of the canals for younger to deliver their minority voices and representation, which not accommodate by mainstream media. Visualizing Analysis research method will be used in this paper with 25 Video samples uploaded by Chinese-Indonesian younger related to the topic of Nationalism and Indonesia within 2015-20222.

Keywords: media representation, chinese indonesian, identity, youtube