TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Political Communication Observer from Prapanca Research, Muhammad Rifqi Nirasma, viewed the middle class as the most influential class in the 2014 presidential election. "This is the class that can access a lot of information from various social media," he said at Universitas Indonesia, Friday, January 3, 2014.
According to him, through the information that they obtained, the middle class could influence the class below them and their peers. As a result, there is a view that the middle class could become opinion leaders. "The class that is 20 percent of the population has become an important matter," he said.
The middle class, he said, would form the public's opinions through existing social media. "Social media, such as, Twitter and Facebook could form strong opinion 'waves'," he said.
Conversations in a number of social media, he said, there were 8.2 million conversations regarding a number of presidential candidates. "There are 6.9 million conversations on Joko Widodo, 1.3 million regarding the rest of public figures."
Those numbers are one of the results from research institution Prapancha Research regarding the "2014 Prediction on Indonesia's Political, Social and Economic Conditions". The research was based on conversations on social media and five news portals in Indonesia in 2013.