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The internet in Thailand

an alternative means of communication

Thammakit Thammo

pp. 125-131


This paper aims to discuss the increasingly unbalanced structure of public communication in Thailand. To this end, an Internet survey and an in-depth interviews will be employed to investigate the unprecedented popularity of the Internet with people who are dissatisfied with the mainstream media (commercial newspapers, radio and television), which do not serve their need to have their voice heard in public. The study argues that due to (1) the media domination of political and business powers, (2) the lack of a public channel of communication and (3) the suppression of opposing viewpoints by the government, people utilise the Internet and the bulletin boards, in particular, as an alternative form of communication to express their concerns and engage in public affairs. The main argument of this paper is to dispel the notion that the Internet is a medium that is exclusively the purview of those who are affluent, who are privileged with resources, income or education. The predominant belief in Thailand today is that the Internet is there to serve the privileged and that this could lead to even more elitist control and censorship. Conversely, this investigation reveals that people as users can in fact make a difference; that is, to a large extent, they are capable of influencing the medium to be more supportive of them and their environment. As the Internet is capable of being a venue of popular usage, this paper argues that it is crucial to support this new medium's penetration of a wider public. The problem of a digital divide needs to be addressed; large sections of population, especially those who lack either financial resources or technical skills, must be included in this Information and Communication Technologies development.

Publication details

Published in:

(2009) Political culture of web 2.0 in Asia. Knowledge, Technology & Policy 22 (2).

Seiten: 125-131

DOI: 10.1007/s12130-009-9073-0


Thammo Thammakit (2009) „The internet in Thailand: an alternative means of communication“. Knowledge, Technology & Policy 22 (2), 125–131.