RELATIONS BETWEEN MEDIA AND CONFLICT:
Challenges To Civil Society Life In Indonesia
Civil society is considered to be the arena of voluntary and collective action among shared interests, purposes and values that strengthens the social foundations of democracy in a state. As a part of the civil society, media enable every layer of the society to access free and open information. In other words, media with its journalistic products has become a free market to every element of the society to promote their ideas. Media will fight for influence, claim for the truth, and perform their own version of social reality. Not only as a channel, media can also place itself as a doer in defining social reality and pick any important and relevant issues. The content of mass media cannot be separated from news about conflict, especially those related to human rights. The term “Bad news is good news” seems to be the perspective use by reporters in their writings. News on conflict always becomes major headlines in many world newspapers, including Indonesia. Hard to deny that media, unaware or even aware, has make news on conflicts as a commodity, thus creating widespread public opinion. In a fragile democracy directed public opinion could jeopardize the structure of democratic civil society and human rights basis. That is why conflicts could threaten civil society life, especially here in Indonesia. Media role in reporting conflict has become a serious challenge for Indonesian democratic civil society life.