Tim Majalah Tempo, Jakarta – The Indonesian presidential palace – in Majalah Tempo's latest headline story – found a number of leads suspecting the involvement of buzzers that are believed to have been intentionally mobilized to reiterate several government agendas.
One notable name linked to this is President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's brother-in-law, Andi Wibowo, who is believed to lead one of the social media teams.
The finding by the magazine's editorial team published on Monday, August 31, reveals that Andi had recruited a social-media-savvy figure in 2019 identified as Pepih Nugraha, claiming that he had been paid by Jokowi's social media team.
According to the magazine report, Pepih would often publish articles across a number of platforms using several accounts – both anonymous and identifiable accounts – with the former, he claims, are used as "buzzer" accounts. Pepih also revealed that he would often echo his own writing on social media.
He also acknowledged that these social media campaigns are in the grey area and that the impressions that are generated from internet users that are attracted by this activity can be calculated clearly. According to Pepih, the team which he follows would more than often reiterate the president and VP's statements in each of the team member's social media account.
Based on information Tempo gathered, Andi is rumored to continue as the president's liaison with the social media team after the 2019 presidential election had ended.
Tempo reached Andi Wibowo to confirm about this issue and his role in managing President Jokowi's social media, however, Andi remained tight-lipped. "Um, don't ask me," he said in a phone interview. He was also reluctant to answer Tempo's following questions.