International Journal of Cyber Society and Education, Vol 4, No 1 (2011)

Patterns of Internet and Traditional Media Use for Political Information and Political Participation in Malaysia

Wan Asna Wan Mohd Nor, Salfarina Abdul Gapor, Mohamad Zaini Abu Bakar, Zainon Harun

Abstract


There has been a growing academic interest in the role of new communication technology in the political process in Asia. The increasing influence of the Internet to diffuse political information may have facilitated high voter involvement in the political process in this region. This study examines patterns of on-line and traditional news media use among people who have access to the Internet in Malaysia. The results show an association between the use of the Internet and traditional media -- newspapers, television, and radio -- for political information among the respondents interviewed. This study suggests that the Internet is widely used to gather political information, but its use for this purpose is not replacing the newspapers and television. There is also an indication that the Internet users participate online in a limited number of political activities. However, the political knowledge gained from the Internet does not seem to influence the respondents’ choice of political candidate in elections.

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