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How to Stop Fake News? Presidential Candidates Weigh In

Misinformation, disinformation is all over social media.
by Erwin Colcol
Jan 23, 2022
Photo/s: shutterstock

Presidential candidates on Saturday took a firm stand against misinformation and disinformation online as they called out social media giants and unscrupulous individuals over the proliferation of fake news on the internet.

The Washington Post reported in 2019 how troll farms in the Philippines, made up of as small as four members, created an illusion of legions of fans praising a particular candidate or personality.

Last year, Sen. Panfilo Lacson also claimed that a government undersecretary was organizing troll farms to attack government critics and potential candidates in the 2022 polls not aligned with the administration.

GMA News' Jessica Soho asked four presidential candidates on how they plan to crack down on misinformation and disinformation on social media:

Vice President Leni Robredo

Robredo said social media companies should be held liable over the misinformation and disinformation on their platforms.

"Unang-una meron tayong mga batas na nagcri-criminalize ng maraming mga kasamaan na ginagawa online. Pero yung pag-implement ng batas ay hindi maayos. Kami lang, we have been at the receiving end of so much disinformation pero walang nangyayari sa ating mga reklamo," she said.

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"Pangalawa, kailangan yung mga big social media companies papanagutin kung bakit nila hinahayaan yung kanilang platforms na magamit sa kasinungalingan, kung bakit nila hinahayaan na yung mga kasinungalingan namamayagpag sa kanilang platforms," she added.

Sen. Panfilo Lacson

Lacson said Filipinos should be more discerning on what they see or read on social media.

"Pare-pareho tayong biktima ng fake news at disinformation. So dapat mamulat yung ating mga kababayan, maging discerning on our own, sa sariling galaw natin," he said.

"Pero dapat yung ating pamahalaan may control mechanisms at talagang dapat habulin ang nagpapakalat ng fake news. Kasi minsan yung fake news, kapag inulit nang inulit, nagiging totoo na," he added.

Sen. Manny Pacquiao

While people have the right to use the internet, it should not be abused to the point of creating misinformation and disinformation online, said Pacquiao.

"Pagdating ng panahon, kailangan i-control natin lahat yan. Malaya ang mga tao gumamit ng social media, Facebook. Pero kailangan huwag naman abusuhin, gamitin para gumawa ng trolls," he said.

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"Also, palakasin din natin ang internet signal dito sa ating bansa. At meron din tayong mga kinakausap na makakatulong sa pagpapalakas ng connection ng internet dito sa ating bansa at magpalawak," he added.

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno

Moreno warned social media companies that he would hold them accountable over the spread of fake news.

"Yang may-ari ng mga social media companies na yan, papapanagutin ko yan. Kasi walang sumusubok sa kanilang habulin sila ng bansa. Hinahayaan nilang gawing outlet ng mga maling impormasyon yung kanilang sistema," he said.

"Now, beware. Lahat ng magiging bahagi ng fake news, whether their system or the one person who did it, under our law, it's already existing, pati yung may-ari ng malalaking kumpanya na yan. Dapat panagutin ng tao, ng bansa, ng estado," he added.


Do Not Engage: How to Deal with Trolls Online

How to Fact-Check Online When There's So Much Misinformation

Continue reading below ↓

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