12:41pm Saturday 04 April 2020

Why Indonesia loves Facebook

 Co-Editor of the new blog, Circuit, Sarah Logan looks at what’s driving the uptake.
Photo by West McGowan on Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/westm/4690323994/
Photo by West McGowan on Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/westm/4690323994/

What drives Indonesia’s massive growth in social media use, especially Facebook? Indonesia has driven Facebook’s growth rates in the region and is one of Facebook’s top markets worldwide. This isn’t necessarily only a function of Indonesia’s size: Internet penetration as a whole remains relatively low and broadband speeds are still comparatively slow.  Despite this, Indonesians have been amongst the fastest adopters of Facebook in the world, and the fastest in South East Asia. Whilst a small part of the overall Facebook growth story, Indonesia’s spectacular growth rate of 645% in 2008, beat India, Malaysia, China and Singapore, put the country at the very forefront of Facebook’s expansion into the region.

The question is why.  Some commentators suggest the rise of Facebook in Indonesia is due to its early introduction of more accessible mobile media platforms in a country where the fastest growing user base accesses the net by phone. However, most users in Indonesia still access the net from internet cafes – so this alone cannot explain such rapid growth.

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