NEGOTIATION OF INTERESTS IN GOVERNING COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY: TRACING ACTOR-NETWORK IN THE USE OF 2.4GHZ BAND FOR WIRELESS LOCAL AREA NETWORKS IN INDONESIA

Rouli Manalu

Abstract


This research aims to provide analysis of the ways in which technology is governed and the ways in which actors play their roles in regulating, resisting, and negotiating their interests in the governing process. It focuses historical analysis of the use of 2.4 GHz radio bands for Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs) in Indonesia. In 2003 Indonesian Government announced a new policy regarding the use of 2.4GHz for the purpose of outdoor Internet or Wireless Area Network (WLAN). The policy required all the users of this radio band to obtain license and pay the annual concession fee for using the band to the government. This policy faced a strong reaction and controversies from a number of communities in the country, such as business communities, users communities, communities of academia, and communities of Internet expert. Some of the controversies were voiced through mass media (newspapers and magazines), but more elaborate dialogues can be found through a number of mailing lists or listserv of some of the communities that concern with Internet development. The controversies regarding to this policy eventually brought a number of communities' representatives and state government to sit together in a series of dialogues, where negotiation of interests occurred. In the end, by January 2005, the government changed the policy and liberates the 2.4 GHz radio band to be use for WLAN for free by the Indonesian public. This research aims to provide an account of the ways in which process of policy change took place. It aims to identify the parties involved in the process, their concerns, and the ways in which they communicate and negotiate their interests.


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