Cancellation of Rappler’s license to operate, a ‘heavy punishment’— media organizations

admin   •   January 22, 2018   •   3955

MANILA, Philippines — The Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) decision to cancel Rappler’s license to operate is not a commensurate response and a heavy punishment for the online news agency.

Media organizations such as the Philippine Press Institute (PPI) and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) believe that Rappler’s nature as a business and a media entity should be dissected.

“Let Rappler answer for its lapses while it still operates as a media entity. That’s it. Let’s draw the line. You cannot have that kind of a serious punishment for Rappler,” said PPI Executive Director Ariel Sebellino.

According to Professor Danilo Arao of University of the Philippines (UP) College of Mass Communications, it is clear that the online news agency is Filipino-owned.

“Because if you look at the articles of incorporation and the other SEC papers of Rappler, what’s stated there is that it’s 98% owned by RHC or the Rappler Holdings Corporation and other percentages and the remaining shares would be owned  by the likes of Maria Ressa, Chay Hofilena, some other personalities,” said Arao.

The news agency is currently facing several cases. Rappler CEO Maria Ressa is facing a cyber crime complaint aside from the one filed by SEC.

But setting this aside, Rappler and other media organizations still have a responsibility to the public to be transparent in every transaction it enters.

According to NUJP, the credibility of reporters are being tested especially now that “fake news” sites are spreading.

“I think, we ourselves as journalists should be transparent about our work process. How do we gather the news, you know how do we make the news because this is the only way to make people understand that what they’re reading, what they’re seeing, what they’re hearing is actually a product of a painstaking process of fact-betting,” said NUJP Board Member Nonoy Espina.

Meanwhile, the Presidential Task Force on Media Security denies that this era is the most dangerous time for members of the media.

“We have so many media organizations in the Philippines. We have 436 broadcast TV stations. We have 411 AM stations. We have 114 FM stations and we have more than 400 newspapers not to mention how many bloggers do we have pro or anti-government that are free in speaking their minds so, I don’t see it,” said PTFoMs Executive Director Usec. Joel Sy Egco.

“Let’s see if we have a media outfit which will be closed because they are critical of the government. Let’s see if there’s something that will happen to Rappler if there’s an attempt to curtail their exercise their media profession. Let’s just let it. Facts will prevail. We already said we don’t have any knowledge about it. The president has no knowledge about it. They are not stopping,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.

The task force will be intensifying the operational guidelines for media security on Wednesday which it will disseminate throughout the country. — Mai Bermudez | UNTV News and Rescue


DILG tells PNP to identify, sue perpetrators of fake news on kidnappings online

Robie de Guzman   •   December 17, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has directed the Philippine National Police (PNP) to identify and file charges against those behind the online postings of fake news and videos of purported abduction of individuals, especially minors, for organ harvesting.

Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, spokesperson for the DILG, said Interior Secretary Eduardo Año issued the directive amid investigation on the recent series of viral videos of separate alleged kidnappings of minors in Bulacan and Cavite.

Malaya said the PNP has confirmed that the latest viral video posted on Facebook of the supposed kidnapping of a 10-year old boy in Bulacan was fake.

He cited the result of Cyber Patrolling and Open Source Investigation of PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG), which found that no recent abduction transpired using a white van nor were there reported series of abductions lodged in police stations and news networks.

The alleged abductions of unidentified persons using a white van has been circulating in social media platforms as early as 2016 but were found to be a hoax.

He added that based on the PNP’s assessment of social media platforms, some individuals have capitalized viral news on alleged kidnappings to gain more likes, shares, comments and interactions from their Facebook followers for profit.

“There are unscrupulous people on social media who are doing staged videos of alleged abductions to sow fear among the people and to earn money,” Malaya said in a statement.

“We wish to remind the public that the perpetrators of fake news earn money from your likes, shares and comments. We understand that you think you are only warning your loved ones but you are also unintentionally spreading fear. Let us not embolden these people any longer,” he added.

The DILG official asked the public to be wary of fake news online and not to be quick in liking or sharing “unfounded and baseless videos.”

“If you have no personal knowledge of an alleged abduction or you are not sure of the source, we ask the public not to share or like it.” he said.

Malaya also urged the public to help suppress the spread of fake news online by immediately reporting the post, especially those may cause undue alarm and panic to the public, to the PNP-ACG hotlines 09985988116; Tel: +63 (02) 414-1560 and Fax: +63 (02) 414-2199.

Authorities arrest student who posted fake abduction on social media

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 4, 2019

The Cebu Provincial Police has reported that they arrested 21-year-old student on Tuesday (December 3) for posting fake abductions by men in a white van on his social media.

Cebu provincial police director Colonel Roderick Mariano, on Wednesday (December 4), identified the fake news culprit as Brigs Granada Alvaro.

Mariano reported, Alvaro was arrested in their home in Sitio Taboc, Barangay Lo-oc, Danao City and was brought to the police station for investigation. He also said that the culprit has caused alarm to the public by posting fake news.

Danao City Police Chief Lieutenant Colonel Maribel Getigan said they are preparing the criminal case to be filed against Alvaro.

“We are preparing a criminal case for violation of the Revised Penal Code, particularly Alarm and Scandal in relation to (Cyber Crime Law), Section 6, Republic Act 10175,” Getigan said in a statement.

She also added that Alvaro was immediately turned over to the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) for psychological examination.

“He is up for psychological assessment whether or not he is on his normal state of mind,” she said.

Getigan also said that the minor admitted to posting the falsified news.

“Alvar voluntarily offered a statement that the post was a mere false story and his intention is to give warning only to those young adults who are always roaming around the city during night time,” she said.—AAC

Claim that Build, Build, Build program is a failure: Fake news – Cayetano

Maris Federez   •   November 14, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – House Speaker Allan Peter Cayetano called out Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon for his statement that the implementation of the Build, Build, Build program was a “dismal failure”.

Cayetano said Drilon’s claim was fake news, pointing out that the Duterte Administration has implemented more infrastructure projects than the past administrations.

“Sa budget pa lang makikita mo na yun. Sa sincerity andiyan din. It’s being done not just for politics but to give people. A safe and comfortable life. Ang tiningnan lang ng senado iyong flagship programs alone and then tiningnan lang nila ano iyong naumpisahan ano iyong hindi,” Cayetano said. (with details from Mai Bermudez) /mbmf


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