When talking about technology, of course it cannot be separated from human life. Forever, as long as human civilization exists, technology will continue to be the most important thing in life. The thing that is currently trending and being discussed is information and communication technology (ICT) which is one of the most important things in this century. It is undeniable that ICT cannot be separated from human life. Starting from small children to parents, small traders to large entrepreneurs, whether they realize it or not, they are very dependent on ICT.
When viewed from the perspective of history, ICT has actually begun to be known to humans since hundreds of centuries ago. Since humans were created on this earth, humans have started trying to communicate with symbols and signs. This is the starting point for the development of ICT. ICT is growing very rapidly until now. Nowadays, distance and time seem to be no longer an obstacle in communicating. People who are on different islands and even different countries are now able to communicate and even be able to display it visually. One of the things that is currently trending is internet-based and electronic activities. Some examples include e-learning, e-banking, e-library, e-metabolism, e-mail and so on. Electronic-based activities are certainly very helpful for human activities. With the foregoing, the dimensions of space and time are no longer an obstacle. In addition, the data processing process is getting faster and more efficient. Various electronic goods ranging from televisions, cellphones, pagers, PDAs, laptops to palmtops have become familiar items for the public. The development of ICT is also increasing rapidly along with the discovery of more sophisticated tools.
Looking at what is happening now, you can imagine what might happen in the future. The distance will no longer be felt. In the future, long-distance communication will be carried out with a very real three-dimensional hologram. Human jobs will begin to be done by robots that work automatically and are able to learn from their experiences so that they are able to correct the mistakes they do by themselves. Computer technology will also develop rapidly. Future computers will be able to respond to human actions and understand human language. Even more sophisticated, the next generation of computers is predicted, will have feelings like humans.
Impact of Technology Development
The positive side is that people who are active users of technology, websites, and social communication media, they can convey information and also get information more easily. Communication, especially in Indonesia, feels as if it becomes easier along with the development of this technology. When viewed from the negative side, this technological advancement makes people lazy to communicate directly. People prefer to interact through their cellphones rather than communicate with those around them. For example, a child is busy chatting with friends via his cellphone instead of talking to his siblings when a family event is taking place. Sometimes these technological advances also make a person less sensitive to expressions when communicating with the other person.
When people are too busy with their phone or PC, then they spend a long time interacting in cyberspace, they don’t realize that at that time they are wasting their time interacting with the real life around them. The large number of social media users and internet accesses proves that Indonesians prefer to interact and mingle virtually with other social media and internet users.
According to a survey conducted by MarkPlus Insight (dailysocial.net) on November 13, 2012 regarding internet users in Indonesia, there are three things that can support the statement regarding the number of people who communicate virtually. 40% of Internet users in Indonesia, which is around 24.2 million people, access the Internet for more than 3 hours each day. In addition, the majority of Internet users in Indonesia are aged 15 to 35 years. As well as approximately 56.4% of people, including bargain hunters, namely people who can access the Internet to find information and all things for their needs for quite a long time.
Particularly for Indonesia, advances in this technology have had a profound impact on various aspects. These aspects include the economic and social sectors. Based on data from the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology of the Republic of Indonesia (Menkominfo), one of the ranks of the Minister of the Republic of Indonesia stated that Indonesia is one of the countries with the most people accessing the Internet in the world. In addition, there is also a research institute that states that Indonesia is ranked fifth in the list of the largest smartphone users in the world. The data also states that Indonesia is in the top 5 with active internet users, namely as many as 47 million or around 14% of the total mobile phone users.
One of the mass communication experts, Harold D. Laswell and Charles Wright, once stated the social function of mass media. Its actual function includes the first one as an effort to disseminate information and interpretations as objectively as possible about the events that occurred (Social Surveillance). Second, as an effort to disseminate information that can connect one social group to another (Social Correlation). Next is an effort to pass on noble values from one generation to the next (Socialization). And the last one is as a public entertainer (Entertainment). (Dahlan, 2008)
These four functions, according to Harold D. Laswell and Charles Wright, are beginning to be eroded due to ongoing technological advances. Now the boundaries of mass communication and interpersonal communication have become somewhat artificial. Because with the development of technology, especially in Indonesia, following that, new ways of communicating will also emerge, in this case, for example, through social media. Perhaps now the function of a cell phone, from being only used for sending messages or calling someone, has evolved far into a ‘laptop’ that can be easily carried anywhere. An example related to this development is that now a person may not even know someone’s telephone number even though that person is his best friend. The person prefers to save the bb pin compared to saving that person’s phone number.
Seeing the phenomenon that is happening, especially in Indonesia, it is very worried that the development of technology will have a negative impact on the social life of the Indonesian people. In connection with this development, it is also necessary to increase public awareness of the surrounding environment. Changes due to the rapid development of technology have, unconsciously or consciously changed several patterns of life for people, especially Indonesia. For example, now a lot of children are dependent on their gadgets and their parents.
Besides that, the negative impact is that their development in terms of socializing is very slow. Because they are too focused on these gadgets. And in Indonesia today, the role of mass media, technology, and social media is in high control. It can easily and relatively quickly influence public opinion. For example, in the world of Twitter the term buzzer is known. The buzzer here acts like an opinion leader where when that person tweeted something, many would think like the buzzer would think. Technological advances do bring about many positive impacts, but so are negative impacts. In the case of the buzzer, for example, if the information disseminated is an important and useful science, it becomes a very positive thing, but if the information is fabrication or slander against someone or something then it will be detrimental to the related parties.
The conclusion that we need to pay attention to is that everyone, especially the Indonesian people, must be really smart in sorting out the positive and negative sides so that technological developments occur and how communication should be carried out properly and balanced.