Reading Habits in Indonesia – Etiquettes

At presents, increased reading habits and countries prosperity are two things that can not be separated. In developed countries, the habits of reading a book can be very high. The great system must have an impact on the life and culture of the reading community, thus the level of literacy is high there. The habits of reading a book are very important as also can have an effect to revive the publishing world, the eradication of illiteracy, as well as to increase the interest of reading, whose cultivated benefits is the intelligence and progress of the nation.

Indeed, the existence of varied methods, facilities or reading options, and a supportive atmosphere, also contributes greatly to fostering the spirit and culture of reading, especially for children or students.

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Perhaps in a country where reading levels are still lacking such as Indonesia, then people who say that their habit is reading then it’s usually considered to have been a positive habit. Reading habits assumes that the person reads more often than the average person. If people in Indonesia have a higher interest in reading than today, thus it could be surmised that in the future no one will answer reading activity as a kind of hobby as reading will be a common activity done everywhere and by anyone at anytime.

Reading is very important. But reading should not be forced, because of the willingness and self-awareness of the importance of reading for life. No wonder that in developed countries, people usually love to read. Even reading has become part of their lifestyle and culture.


Despite the fact that reading interest in Indonesia is still very low, it does not have to weaken or break our spirits. Complaining and cursing is not the solution. It is precisely this critical condition that we must make it as a trigger to change the situation for the better. And it must start from each of us. Let’s build a nation with a culture of reading and make reading, especially reading books, as part of our daily life habits because reading brings many positive impacts.


For urban people then it’s a daily sight as in City many people there read books, magazines, and newspapers all the time. This activity is not only dominated by students, scholars, and intellectuals. Bus drivers, taxi drivers, construction workers, and street food vendors are often seen reading while resting and having little time to spare.

You can try to ask whether reading it is their habit and surely they would laugh if you assumed that they had a hobby of reading. They even laugh because they think reading is a hobby reserved only for the rich, smart, or those who have a lot of free time. Uniquely though they think they are uneducated and obviously have no time because they are busy working and yet they still have time to absorb the written word for word. Because for them, reading is not just a hobby as reading is a daily habit and one of the life’s necessities.

If only the habit of reading like in the City can also be spread in other places in the country, then it can be more and more citizens who get enlightened for their analytical thinking.

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For rural area then the reading habit is different as in the city, as they tend to farm their land for their habit rather than reading the book. The commemoration of the day of the reading book is usually not directly proportional to the high reading interest of the rural community. In the Village Hall, usually, there is a small library there that has many books and is run by village administration there. But very rarely people come intentionally just to read in that place.

Growing interest in reading is not easy. It goes back to each other curiosity and requires time to cultivate reading as a great habit for the rural community. Many will expect that young people, especially those in the village must be diligent in reading. Because reading can change their mindset and increase the knowledge.

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Best Places to Read

Reading is an important activity in a language acquisition process and its relationship in the process of analyzing and understanding science. Therefore reading culture continues to grow in the midst of society from time to time. As September 14 has been designated a Library Visit Day and September is proclaimed as the Reading Month since 1995 by President Soeharto. The goal is no other than to foster interest in reading for Indonesian society that is still relatively low. Thus there are many reading places that are created for the sole purpose of increasing the habits of reading.

The best places to read consists of following places

  1. National Library
  2. Book Store
  3. At cafe that provide books for the customer
  4. School library

The saying that “the book is the window of the world” is certainly familiar to those educated people. The book is one of the reading media that provides many sources of information for readers. Reading media can be divided into several types such as books, magazines, and newspapers. Initially, many reading media were formed from the number of information printed on paper. This is what we often refer to as print media, although print media to this day still exists, the trend shows a shift toward the electronic reading media. The development of technology and information grow rapidly is one-factor affecting people’s reading habits. Now people are beginning to switch to using electronic reading media that can be accessed from electronic devices they have such as smartphones, tablet computers, computers and IPad.

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Do and Don’ts when reading something in Indonesia

There are some rules that need to be taken seriously while reading so as to achieve greater experience and bring harmonious relationship towards each other. Below will explain some of them.

1. Don’t Mumble While Reading 

One way to be able to quickly understand what you are reading is to know the main idea to be conveyed. And sometimes people mumbled the words they read and actually this style of reading is not wrong, it’s just less effective when used to read textbooks or lectures. You will take a long time to read in words per word. In addition, you will also be prone to repeat the previous reading and annoy the person next to you who are also reading.

2. Do Ensure Distance of Your Reading ± 30 cm

Reading with the distance between the eyes and the book closer does give you much more focused. But reading in the distance that is too close to your eyes will make you dizzy and felt difficult to understand words because you are reading in words per word. Therefore, read the book in the ideal distance, which is about 30 cm. Within this distance, your view will be wider so it can include 1 sentence directly. Your brain will be more relaxed in receiving information because it won’t feel dizzy.

3. Do Familiarize yourself Reading in 1 Whole Sentence

Read books or other readings per sentence. Put the focus of views always on the third and fourth words, thus coverage of words that you can read will be more understandable. After that, search for keywords for every sentence you have read. The word will help you understand the meaning of the next sentence.

4. Do Move Your Finger In accordance with Reading

Most of the reasons you reread are due to forgotten words, so you do not understand the reading on the next page. to overcome it, try reading with help from your index finger. Movement of the index finger according to the sentences you are reading. That way, there will be no more forgotten or missed words

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5. Do use Highlighter for sentences

Usually, the main idea or phrase is at the beginning or at the end of the paragraph only. When you know the main idea, put a mark with a highlighter. The main idea is the ‘bridge’ that connects each paragraph you read. By knowing and marking well with highlighter then you will more easily understand and capture the intentions conveyed by the book.

7. Do Make Yourself To Read More Often

Routine self-reading will make you better. This does not only happen in the world of music or sports but also reading habits. The more often you get used to reading, the more comfortable and good you are in doing it. And as you get better, reading time is not just getting faster, but you’re also getting easier at understanding the ideas and intentions of those readings materials.

8. Do Create A Book Club

When you had read so many books then it’d be a good idea to start creating a book club so as to expand the reading materials that you have with other people with the same interest. This is needed so that you can find the great idea of what to read next and also able to convey your achievement of what you had read to your Book Club community.

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People need to get used to reading anything every day as it can be novels, magazines, newspapers, or articles on the internet. And their reading ability will be much better than before as interest in reading can be improved if we really want to change. This is important as low reading interest affects the quality of a nation’s education. Therefore, the spirit of reading should be encouraged. All elements of the nation must join hands in overcoming the difficulty in reading activities.