DICT advises FB users to set profile to private amid fake account reports

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 8, 2020   •   232

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) advises Facebook users to set their profiles to private amid proliferation of fake accounts.

In a statement, the DICT said they are working closely with the National Privacy Commission (NPC) and Facebook Philippines to investigate the matter.

“The DICT has also instructed its Cyber Security Bureau to actively coordinate with law enforcement agencies and provide the necessary technical assistance on information sharing and analysis needed to address this matter,” the statement reads.

The DICT urges the public to immediately report any fake or dummy accounts they encounter on Facebook through this link www.facebook.com/help/report. AAC

Big companies boycott Facebook

UNTV News   •   June 30, 2020

A long list of U.S. companies have pulled advertising from Facebook in support of a campaign that called out the social media giant for not doing enough to stop hate speech on its platforms.

Ice-cream maker Ben & Jerry’s, consumer conglomerate Unilever, and coffee chain Starbucks have nixed ads on the social media network.

And PepsiCo will do so as well, FOX Business News reported citing sources on Sunday (June 28).

The halt on PepsiCo’s advertising will run through July and August, the report said.

PepsiCo did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reuters.

Annually, Facebook generates $70 billion in advertising sales and about a quarter of it comes from big companies such as Unilever with the vast majority of its revenue derived from small businesses.

But the publicity around its hate speech policies have hurt its perception and stock.

On Friday (June 26), Facebook’s 8.3% decline in stock price wiped out $56 billion in market capitalization.

Responding to demands for more action, Facebook on Sunday acknowledged it has more work to do and is teaming up with civil rights groups and experts to develop more tools to fight hate speech.

Facebook said its investments in artificial intelligence have allowed it to find 90% of hate speech before users report it.

The boycott has accelerated to include other digital advertising platforms, such as Twitter. REUTERS

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DICT to launch 20 wifi sites in Basilan

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 29, 2020

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) is set to launch 20 free wifi sites in Isabela and Lamitan in Basilan on Tuesday (June 30).

DICT Secretary Gregorio B. Honasan II cited the importance of connectivity and access especially while the country copes with the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

“It has become the lifeblood of our society, providing a sense of normalcy in our lives. And with that, it is your DICT’s duty to ensure the whole country are afforded this right, including the remotest part of the country. It is our duty to ensure the country safely transition to the new normal,” he said.

The following are the sites to be launched.

  1. DICT Basilan Provincial Office
  2. Basilan National High School
  3. Basilan Provincial Capitol
  4. Basilan Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office
  5. Basilan Provincial Library
  6. Infantry Brigade101 Headquarters, Isabela City
  7. Isabela City Hall
  8. Isabela City Maritime Police
  9. Isabela City Port
  10. Isabela City Post Office
  11. Malamawi National High School
  12. 18th Infantry Battalion, Armed Forces of the Philippines Camp, Lamitan City
  13. Business Center, Lamitan City
  14. Datu Kalun Plaza, Lamitan City
  15. Digital Hub, Lamitan City
  16. Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office, Lamitan City
  17. Lamitan City Hall
  18. Lamitan City Health Office
  19. Lamitan City Port
  20. Lamitan City Infirmary 

The wifi sites will provide internet access at no charge to users in the selected public places. AAC

Facebook closes political ads loophole ahead of U.S. presidential election

UNTV News   •   June 18, 2020

Facebook Inc. said on Tuesday (June 17) it would affix labels to political ads shared by users on their own feeds, closing what critics have said for years was a glaring loophole in the company’s election transparency measures.

The world’s biggest social network has attached a “paid for by” disclaimer to political ads since 2018, after facing a backlash for failing to stop Russia from using its platforms to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

But the label disappeared once people shared the ads to their own feeds, which critics said undermined its utility and allowed misinformation to continue spreading unchecked.

Facebook introduced a similar labelling approach for state news media earlier this month, but that label also sometimes drops off with sharing and does not appear when users post their own links to those outlets.

The company has been facing demands to do more to combat false viral information before the Nov. 3 presidential election, including by presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden, who called Facebooks’s chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg on June 11 to reverse his decision to exempt political ads from fact-checking.

Zuckerberg has touted transparency tools in response, arguing that voters should be able to examine statements from would-be political leaders unimpeded.

In a USA Today op-ed on Tuesday, he pledged to display a Voting Information Center at the top of U.S. users’ news feeds. He also said the company would aim to help 4 million people register to vote, double its goal for 2016. (Reuters)

(Production: Paul Warren, Gabriela Boccaccio)

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