Ruth Mei Ulina Malau | Understanding the relationship between social media use and identity performances of the minority youth in Indonesia

Ruth Mei Ulina Malau | Understanding the relationship between social media use and identity performances of the minority youth in Indonesia | University of Groningen, department International Relations and International Organization (IRIO) | Promotor: Prof. Inanna Hamati-Ataya; supervisor(s): dr. Donya Ahmadi and dr. Seiki Tanaka | 01/04/2024 – 31/03/2028 | r.m.u.malau@rug.nl 

 

How do the minority youth consume social media? What are the effects social media use on the social interactions of the minority youth in Indonesia? How do the minority youth in Indonesia express and negotiate their identities on social media? These are the research questions addressed in the project.

 

Despite the fact that young people are among the most active users of online media, their experiences are often marginalized in academic discussions of the internet within the discipline of communication (Livingstone, 2003, cited in Redden and Way, 2016). This study seeks to address this gap by focusing on the experiences of minority youth in Indonesia, particularly those who are considered minorities based on their ethnicity, gender, and religion. Through the application of virtual ethnography, this research aims to enhance understanding of the convergence of social media and the physical world, with a particular focus on concepts drawn from media and cultural studies. Additionally, this research underscores the significance of identity construction (and reconstruction, as demonstrated in Huang et al., 2021) as a crucial element to consider in the study of social media. By examining the ways in which these young people negotiate their social identities on social media platforms, this study has the potential to shed light on the complex intersection of the ethnicity, gender, race, culture, and social media technology in the lives of minority youth.