We have an interview with Tegar Mardhika (@mardhikategar), the person behind the @kabarbaikdariCL. We made interview with him, through email, since he launched a #gantianduduk campaign on the twitverse. It is an interesting campaign actually. So let us see what the main reason of the campaign. Thank you for @andin1337 for helping me translating the interview
Hello Tegar, can you please tell a little bit about yourself (including since when you’ve used the Commuter Line and which Commuter Lines’ route do you use? And since when did you create the @kabarbaikdariCL account?
Hi. I am currently working at the 97.9 FeMale Radio Jakarta as a Program Assistant Director. My work hours require me to be at the office at 7 o’clock in the morning every day even though I live in Bogor. So every day I depart and arrive between Bogor and Jakarta.
Initially I was a “busmania,” or in other words I ride the bus everywhere. Hehehe.. I kind of forgot exactly when I switched to the Commuter Line but I think it was sometime in March or April. It was incidental at the time.
So the story was at that time, the Baranangsiang Bus Terminal at Bogor had plans to be totally renovated because it was going to be moved and split into several bus terminals in Bogor. Since then, the condition of the terminals was not so good, not because the renovations started to begin, but because there was resistance from the bus companies who do not want it to be moved. It was natural, actually. It’s people looking for meals to fill their stomach, so there will be objection is it is moved.
Since then there were many demonstrations at the terminal. Not just demonstrations but also strikes. So many times I was there very early in the morning to go to work but buses came because of the demonstrations.
After a few times, I was finally suggested to board the trains instead.
Initially I was not accustomed to riding the trains, because in addition to the location of the Bogor Station to be the source of traffic jam every day, I think that it is further away from my workplace in the Blok M area (usually I take the Agra Mas from Bogor, and stop at Lebak Bulus, then take the motorcycle taxi to Blok M to pursue that 7 o’clock)
But because the buses at the time frequently did not come to the bus terminal, finally one day I tried to catch a train. At the time it was still IDR 9000 for a round-trip between Bogor and Sudirman. Those that rode this route was also not as many as it is today because the economic train still existed. From that time until now I ride the trains every day. So arguably I am still very new as a “Anak Kereta.” Hehehe..
As a new kid on the trains, I felt like I must look for information about railways. I began to follow train accounts on Twitter. Initially it was just for the updates if there are disorders. Because from way back then, although I was not a train kid from the start, I already know that train rides are quite horrific with all sorts of disorders and density of passengers.
Nahhh.. not long from that time, PT. KAI decided to implement changes: e-ticketing, subsidized rates, per station tariffs, not allowing people to ride the roof of trains, more modern stations, no more artisans/beggers and many more.
A few of that changes I value positively, but it is not so for many others. Twitter timelines began to fill with insults, complaints, and protests from Commuter Line users. Not only in the virtual world, in the real world as well. Almost every day while riding the train, there are people who complain, grumble, and nag about trains today.
Especially when the economic train was abolished, more and more people complain and makes my ears burn every time I hear them.
I myself tried to remain calm and not be emotional in going through my every day routine. After all, I thought, “we have no choice. If you already know the train is full, you shouldn’t have ridden it. If you know the trains are usually late, don’t take them. And all that stuff.”
Until finally one day I was sick of seeing timelines in twitter that is filled with all sorts of complaints from people every day. “Are you all not tired of complaining, grumbling, and criticizing every day?”
This is when I decided to not only be a “connoisseur” of the life of train journeys every day. But I also just want to become a “story teller” of people’s lives that has the same routine as I do who rides the trains every day.
And then I created the @kabarbaikdariCL Twitter account 🙂
Do you have a special reason for making that account? Because its missions are rather anti-mainstream when there were many complaints about the Commuter Line services.
The reason I created the @kabarbaikdariCL account was actually simple: is it really true that the passengers of the Commuter Line are those who despise, grumble, complain, and berate? And yet they all ride the Commuter Line every day.
Are there really no one that experience “good things” when at the Commuter Line? Despite the Commuter Line passengers are also famous for their “solidarity” as they each have the same routine, so some people always meet at the same hour, forming a community.
Some good stuff in tweets that are re-tweeted by @kabarbaikdariCL are events that I experience myself when riding the Commuter Line. Of course I tweeted using a personal account, and then that is re-tweeted because as much as possible the stories that are re-tweeted must come directly from Commuter Line passengers.
Initially, I mentioned some existing train accounts first to know how to respond to the administrators using the @kabarbaikdariCL account. Some of them re-tweeted so their followers are informed of this account.
As I guessed, many doubted the account saying that “there cannot be anything posstive from Commuter Lines because the service is worse every, blah, blah, blah”
It is precisely this kind of response that makes me passionate again. “Are all Commuter Line passengers really do not have any positive thoughts? Are they all really just grumblers?”
It turns out that with the many negative responses, it invited the attention of people because after that there are some people who also delivered some good things when riding the Commuter Line.
Some early tweets told when they rode the Commuter Line, the Ac was cold, the schedule was on time, or when there is a disturbance the engineer will inform them, even some told of friendly PKD officers who swiftly assisted passengers, there are also those who feel assisted by other passengers when fighting to get into a train. And many other good things.
Although there are also those who were “sarcastic” when they complained about the Commuter Line they were riding.
I really only re-tweet tweets that have positive tones, and preach of only good things. I also do not reply negative tweets that is filled with people complaining because I was willing to only decorate the timeline on Twitter with good news.
If they are complaints, insults, criticism, that can be done by other accounts. Hehehe..
Why and what is the reason in making the #GantianDuduk campaign in Twitter?
For #GantianDuduk itself, it was already thought of from the beginning when making @kabarbaikdariCL, but at the time because the followers were scarce, it will not spread effectively.
But because after a while the followers stopped increasing (hehehe..) finally I recklessly tried to bring passengers of the Commuter Line to follow this #GantianDuduk.
At the time, I thought of this #GantianDuduk because it turned out that seating issues were of primary concern to Commuter Line passengers, especially during rush over. I myself from the beginning was accustomed to taking turns in sitting with other passengers. Since I am from Bogor, and usually ride the 5:16, I definitely get a seat because usually at 5:00 I’ve arrive at the station.
Back to the seating issue.
People who managed to sit are always “scrutiny” material of those who are standing because they cannot sit, especially if there are distractions or the density of passengers is excessive.
There are some people who are always captious and satirical of the ones that got a seat with words that actually make other passengers uncomfortable. Imagine in the early morning hours when people want to steal his sleep time on the trip but had to hear complaints and grumbles from the people standing.
But the funning thing is, when these ranting people can sit, they are silent and even get busy with their gadgets. All the nagging and scrutiny are gone. Hahaha..
And on average, when managing to get a seat, even if the Commuter Line’s AC broke down, there’s a disturbance, passenger density, they rarely complain. Isn’t that right?
So I think if a person gets a seat, the captious and ranting potential will be reduced. It’s over the line really if you’re sitting and still grumble and complain.
From there, I thought of this #GantianDuduk.
This taking turns in sitting is different to getting a seat because there is a person sitting who arrived at their destination. This taking turns in sitting is when we give our seat to the person standing in front of us even though we are still far away from our destination station. I still usually recommend half a station in taking turns in sitting. Sitting for so long is also tiring anyways.
So far, how do you see the success of the #GantianDuduk campaign?
When I first made this #GantianDuduk (not yet a month if calculated until today),there were a lot of incoming responses. Even when there were only a dozen followers, in a matter of a few hours it can add up to hundreds (no need to buy followers then, hehehe..)
Of course many were cynical again with this movement, but what makes me passionate is that the people who support this movement are not by all means a few. This is apparent from the people who are starting to tweet when they take turns in sitting. Not because they have reached their destination station but because they are supporting this movement.
My goal with movement is to target young people who are technology and gadget sensitive, especially Twitter of course. Generally when they enter a Commuter Line, they hold their gadgets first then the handles of the train. Hehehe..
I equally want to engage men and women because sometimes there are many women who do not want to take turns with a man in front of her. In fact, men who stands all the way from Tanah Abang to Bogor will also feel tired. Hehehe..
I still do not put any targets success with this #GantianDuduk. Because after all, this movement is with its own consciousness. But if I may talk about my desire, my dream if one day, in one carriage, at one station, people are suddenly sitting and standing together to give a seat to the person sitting in front of them, and tweet# GerakanDuduk 🙂
Thank you Tegar, hope you accomplished your mission on #gantianduduk campaign