The Spirit of Archives in the Midst of the Covid-19 Pandemic
By: Agus Santoso
Head of Archives and Multimedia Documentation ITS Surabaya
News about the development of the Covid-19 case has seized the public’s attention. Since President Jokowi officially announced the existence of Covid-19 cases in Indonesia in early March, it seems to be a new chapter for the media industry to convey the latest information about Covid-19. Ironically, today’s media activists do not only come from official and trusted media platforms, but ordinary people can also become news producers on various social media. Currently, a filter is needed that is able to filter out which information is true and which is a hoax. Meanwhile, the presence of Achmad Yurianto as a spokesman for the handling of Covid-19 is the figure that news producers have been waiting for. Its role as the main gate of information regarding the development of Covid-19 cases in Indonesia, is considered a reliable source among the spread of hoaxes about Covid-19. Minister of Communication and Information, Johnny G. Plate in his press conference said that “Currently there has been an increase in hoax cases around Covid-19, until May 14 yesterday there were 686 hoaxes spread across various platforms, be it Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. (kominfo.go.id). Hoaxes during the Covid-19 pandemic have become a source of separate problems for the Government and the public in the midst of the struggle to maintain national stability.
Authentic Archives during the Covid-19 Pandemic
The 49th National Archives Day (18 May 2020) entitled “Authentic Archives for Indonesia” is the right moment to voice the spirit of archiving in the community. Archival activists must show off with all their skills to inform authentic archives in the midst of the current Covid-19 pandemic. The archival spirit must be able to combat hoaxes which are the great enemy of authentic archives. The role of this archiving spirit is needed by the community and the government for information stability in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, as stated by plt. Head of the National Archives of the Republic of Indonesia, Taufik in his remarks at the Commemoration of National Archives Day (18 May 2020). The government through the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology cannot work alone in fighting hoaxes that are increasingly fertile during the Covid-19 pandemic. Hoax information, of course, does not qualify as authentic information. It is archive activists who are able to save the community from the scour of information created by irresponsible persons. In fact, there are still many of our people who cannot distinguish between true information and hoaxes. The National Archives of the Republic of Indonesia in commemoration of the 49th Archives Day this year, wants to invite the public to care about what an authentic archive is. Recently, a “Covid-19 Free Certificate” has been circulated which is sold online. In fact, this letter is being hunted by the public amidst the ban on going home. This case is a whip for our archival world. The news seems to show the low level of public knowledge about authentic archives. it is very unfortunate if the community becomes the person who takes part in creating the inauthentic archive. The role of archivists is very important in this case. How can they provide information to the public about what an authentic archive is, and its importance for the community, especially in the Covid-19 pandemic situation.
Beware of Digital Archives in the PSBB
PSBB, which has become a policy in several regions in Indonesia, has changed people’s lifestyles in a short time. Most people spend more time at home. Surfing activities with the internet are also increasing, starting from online learning, online meetings, and online shopping. Several digital application platforms are also increasingly selling well in this PSBB era. Call it zoom, google meets, whatsapp and other teleconferencing applications. The use of this application has the potential to increase the number of digital archives created and distributed. The activity of sharing documents and personal data becomes a natural thing. These various communication applications are indeed superior in facilitating the communication process in the PSBB era. In fact, vigilance is needed in the use of various digital applications in this PSBB era to avoid cyber crime in the future. So far, the Minister of Communication and Information, Johnny G. Plate, has still stated that the zoom platform is safe to use in the midst of circulating data security issues. On the other hand, Zoom CEO, Eric Yuan admits that there is a security gap in the use of Zoom, the company has taken the wrong step when developing its application that does not focus on data security (Jawa Pos, ed. 9 April 2020). Commemorating Archives Day this year does not have to be ceremonial, but with a real effort to invite the public to be aware of the nature of digital archives, which have increased in number during this PSBB. Archival activists can educate the public to maintain the security of personal data in the midst of the threat of cyber crime that is increasingly rampant during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Archival lessons in the midst of Covid-19
Ironically, in commemoration of the 49th National Archives Day, there are still many who underestimate the world of archives. Starting from the image of piles of paper, dusty rooms, unattractive professions, even to archives that are in kilograms. The moment of commemoration of Archives Day in the Covid-19 pandemic situation must be used by archive activists to raise the name of the archive. Taking an active role in fighting hoaxes through providing authentic sources of information is one way to raise the name of the archive. In addition, archive activists can create educational content related to tips for keeping digital archives safe in the PSBB era. What archival activists do at the celebration of the 49th National Archives Day in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic is expected to provide wisdom for the progress of the National Archives world.
Congratulations and thanks to the student representatives of the Sepuluh Nopember Institute of Technology who have made achievements in
The Spirit of Archives in the Midst of the Covid-19 Pandemic By: Agus Santoso Head of Archives and Multimedia
BEWARE OF SUCCESSFUL DIGITAL ARCHIVES IN THE WFH By: Agus Santoso, S.Sos.,M.Med.Kom Head of Sub-Archive and Multimedia Documentation Institute