“Transitioning Literature into the Digital Age”

The Challenge

Reading has not been among the more popular habits or even pastimes for Indonesians. Efforts to digitize literature, which is an effort to eliminate the physical boundaries of being confined to printed materials thus easing the effort of reading, have even faced a triple firewall: that internet-connected smartphones were predominantly used to access games and movies; that converting people from conventional sources of reading (books, etc.) to digital sources (e-books) had its own set of challenges; and that digital libraries lacked the appeal to its targeted users. If the status quo was left alone, this would prove to become a high opportunity cost for the development of human capital in Indonesia.

Our Approach

ID COMM worked with iJakarta, DKI Jakarta’s state-owned digital library platform that is interwoven with existing social media platforms offering access to millions of e-books, and instigated the “Gerakan Baca Buku Bareng (Let’s read together)” campaign to generate user interest to the platform. In order to gain the right interest, we worked with key stakeholders like the Indonesian National Library, the Nusa Membaca foundation, Jakarta’s Education and Culture office, and many others. We also secured engagement with national Reading Ambassador Najwa Shihab, which is an important actor to help spread the word about the platform being developed.


iJakarta is an excellent initiative that was slotted to become an essential component to the Jakarta Smart City campaign, as human capital was seen to be a quintessential investment that the provincial government saw as an immediate priority. The “Baca Buku Bareng” was a campaign designed by ID COMM to engineer interest and awareness through the notion that reading can be an exciting experience that is now easily accessible literally through the palm of everyone’s hands.


In working with the iJakarta platform, we emphasized the uniqueness of the platform that is the first of its kind in Indonesia that harmonizes a digital library with online social media. This feature is a critical competitive edge as Indonesia is a hotbed for online social media users. This was why we saw the importance of securing support from public figures and celebrities alike to help draw traffic of users that believe in online social media as a current lifestyle niche. We saw our role was quintessential as the nature of social media can get very wrong when incorrect information is transmitted, so ID COMM ensured that the messages sent out to the public is aligned with the vision of the platform.


To do additional justice to the campaign, we worked and engaged a plethora of stakeholders – relevant government entities, media companies, public figures, community groups, and so much more – to promote the platform and to emphasize the message that this was not simply a program; this was a movement, and the participation of everyone was non-negotiable. That last part was also an important feature to highlight, as iJakarta is not a one way street, as users are encouraged to post and comment their literature activities. This, we believe, is what will help iJakarta become sustainable as a platform that will remain relevant in the years to come, and this is part of the message we are trying to convey: that reading is no longer just a private activity but can be a very social one.

The Result

iJakarta is now enlightening people, one e-book at a time. This was a result of a concerted effort and support the campaign strategy has garnered – support commitments from media giants, endorsements by public figures, campaigns launched, community events engaged, and many more.


In a period of just 7 months, iJakarta have received north of 200 news coverages (both print and online), and broadcast media. iJakarta eliminated the physical barrier of printed books and libraries, effectively rising to the challenge dawned upon by urban communities: mobility. By delivering literature to a device almost everyone owns it eliminates the excuse that people can’t read because they don’t have time to go to the library, because now the library goes to them.

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