The Challenges of Social Media in ASEAN Community

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Mohd Azizuddin Mohd Sani


Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will be transformed into a community called ASEAN Community by 31 December 2015. This is considered as a quantum leap for ASEAN when it lets people to take part in the process of decision making in any ASEAN policy even though the resistant still exists from some governments of ASEAN ten member states. However, this people-centric approach, instead of state-centric, will be strengthened with the accessibility of online social media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube especially by the younger generation in ASEAN. This paper briefly traces the forming of ASEAN until the establishment of the ASEAN Community agenda. This paper also discusses about the importance of social media for political change and how it becomes a tool influencing the people to free expression and the government to easily engage the people. However, there are restrictions imposed to the practice of free expression on social media in ASEAN countries. In overall, social media will be an essential medium for ASEAN in the future especially in giving awareness about peace and security and encouraging more interactions between people in the spirit of a community.

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