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Busted: Bicol election officials found 8,654 dead voters for Robredo? It’s fake news!

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Some articles online have been claiming that election officials have found dead registered voters to have voted for Vice President Leni Robredo, giving her an unfair edge over other vice presidential candidates.

The stories, though, came from dubious altervista.org sites, such as Bacolod.altervista.org and localhero.altervista.org. MemeBuster readers might be more familiar with the second blog because we have busted several fake news from that particular site.

Unfortunately, these blogs’ claims have already spread online.

According to the blogs, which both have exactly the same copies of the story, NAMFREL and a Bacolod City Comelec officer reported that Salvador Benedicto, a town in Negros Occidental, fell victim to election fraud as dead people boosted Robredo’s votes. They further claimed that some people from Robredo’s camp were caught driving around a “van full of illegals” to vote from one polling station to the next.

The blogs also said that similar fraudulent activities were also noted in the town of Moises Padiila.

The local radio station DYHB Radyo Agong was said to have reported these:

“Bacolod election officials have determined that more than 22,000 votes (that’s 7,879 more than yesterday) so far in the province of Negros Occidental are null and void because the votes don’t appear to be living.”

“It appears that these voters’ names were never removed from the rolls when they passed away and someone used their information to stack votes for Leni Robredo.”

According to officials, Robredo was estimated to have received 70,000 fake votes.

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Why do we think this story is not true?

  • Story came from a fake news site.

The blog Bacolod.altervista.org might have published it, but it pointed to its source being localhero.altervista.org. The latter has published fake stories such as Trillanes hiring Lascañas and Matobato as his bodyguards, Aquino saying he wanted to return the money he earned from the Dengvaxia deal, Trudeau apologizing to Filipinos and promising visa-free entry for caregivers, and CBCP feeling sad over the death of rebels from an Army strike, and more.

We just spotted another fake news at Bacolod.altervista.org about US President Donald Trump allegedly telling President Rodrigo Duterte that he did a good job in shutting down Rappler.

  • Title is completely irrelevant to the body of the story.

With Bacolod.altervista.org, the headline read, “BICOL Election Officials Found 8,654 Dead Folks Who Voted for Robredo.” But when you read the story, you will find that it was talking about Bacolod City and other towns in Negros Occidental, not Bicol. Even the figure “8,654” dead people could not be found in the story.

  • VP ballot recount is yet to start.

The recount is slated to start in February 18. On January 20, PTV News reported that Negros Occidental’s local NAMFREL chapter is preparing to watch over the retrieval, transport and custody of the ballots and other election materials. The ballot recount will include the provinces of Negros Oriental, Camarines Sur, and Iloilo.

The fact that the ballots are yet to be opened in February showed that it would be impossible for election officials to identify the voters and confirm whether they are still alive or not, as per the altervista blogs’ claims.

  • No other news sites have reported about the issue.

Such major discoveries about the past election would have made it to the different news sites in the country, but you can check it out yourself and you’ll only find the claims of dead voters on the altervista blogs. We even Googled the quoted remarks in the story and here’s what we found:

This claim about thousands of dead people voting for Robredo is a fake one that comes from proven fake news sites. It’s 2018! Let’s be vigilant and not let the fake news makers win this year!

Sources: ( gmanetwork.comptvnews.ph )

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If you’re with us in our advocacy in fighting online lies, we’d appreciate any donation to help keep us moving.

Busted

Busted: Richard Gomez shares fake news claiming Queen Elizabeth II called Duterte a brave man

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Actor and now Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez shared a fake story from an altervista blog claiming that British monarch Queen Elizabeth II called Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte a “brave man.”

Bearing the title, “Queen Elizabeth: Who Would Have Thought That One Day Philippines Will Get Such a Brave Man Like Duterte?” the blog noted that it was from the BBC Channel. However, the blog that published it was britana.altervista.org, which has also been suspended.

However, it should be noted that the blog that published the fake story was was britana.altervista.org, which is already suspended.

 

Gomez shared the post on Twitter on February 21 and it has since caught the attention of the netizens who called him out for sharing fake news.

MemeBuster already busted that story in November 2016. The story was then carried by bbc-channel.com, which is now inactive.

Read more about our story debunking the fake news here.

Several Twitter users called out Gomez for spreading fake news.

Someone urged him to be responsible in sharing news.

Others advised him to check the legitimacy of the news source before sharing.

Gomez was also slammed by netizens when he falsely claimed that the Centenarian Law was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte. The said law was actually signed by former President Benigno Aquino III on June 13, 2016, a week before his term ended.

MemeBuster has listed bbc-channel.com as one of the fake news sites that used the trick of mimicking the URL of established media sources.

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Busted

Busted: Netizens hit Marcos fan page for old misleading meme about Trump allowing Filipinos visa-free entry to US

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In February 2017, fan page “Marcos Corner” posted a meme claiming that US President Donald Trump signed an executive order to allow Filipinos to enter America without a visa.

The meme even said, “Good news for Filipinos…! Thank you President Trump!”

At first look, you’d think the meme was a genuine screenshot from a CNN breaking news story announcing “President Trump signs executive order to allow Filipino citizens to enter America without a visa.”

The Marcos Corner’s admin wrote, “Salute US President.”

“If this is true…. Ayan mga kapwa ko Pinoy. Favor na sa inyo iyan…. #ThanksTrump,” the admin added in a Facebook post on February 10, 2017.

While Marcos Corner posted the meme in February last year, we noticed how it was revived just a few days ago. As of writing, the meme has been shared over 32,000 times. While many of the recent shares showed people being curious about whether the meme’s claim is true or not, some of them just shared the meme without saying anything, making more room for confusion.

There were commenters who rejoiced over the said news.

However, there were also many commenters who called out the Facebook page’s admin for spreading fake news and causing more confusion among the netizens.

The commenters above are right, though. This meme on Trump signing documents that were claimed to be an executive order to give Filipinos visa-free entry to the US is fake.

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MemeBuster has debunked that same photo before when it was first shared in February 2017 by various Facebook pages. We found out that the photo of Trump that was used was actually taken as a screenshot of the live coverage by CNN of the time when the American president signed an EO repealing Obamacare.

There has been no EO from Trump giving Filipinos visa-free entry to his country. In fact, it has been reported recently that Trump wanted to revive the campaign to limit immigrants from bringing their family to the US.

When confronted about the fake news the page “Marcos Corner” was spreading about the Trump and visa for Filipinos, the admin of the page defended themselves by pointing out how they included the phrase “if this is true.”

By including that phrase in their Facebook post, it showed that the admins of the Facebook page was not 100 percent sure about the information that they shared in the first place. And they were right to doubt it because Trump’s photo that was simply pushed online in the meme with misleading texts was really a fake.

Moreover, the list of 63 countries that offer visa-free access to Filipinos does not include the US.

The US’ visa waiver program that allows foreigners to travel to their country for business or tourism for as long as 90 days without getting a visa only includes 38 countries. The Philippines was not included in that list.

Sources: ( chicagotribune.comgmanetwork.com , ph.usembassy.gov )

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Busted

Busted: Trillanes nagsabing handa siyang mamatay katulad ni Ninoy Aquino para sa bansa? It’s a misleading headline!

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Pro-Duterte supporters mocked Senator Antonio Trillanes IV for allegedly saying that he is ready to die for our freedom.

Trillanes, a staunch critic of President Rodrigo Duterte, has been the subject of harsh online comments by Duterte supporters.

In the link shared and commented by many of these supporters however, one will be directed to a prompt saying that the blog has been suspended for violations of community rules.

Websites could be flagged for a variety of reasons such as spammy contents, violence, pornography, and more commonly, inappropriate contents. Ever since the issue of online trolls and bashers hounded the Philippines, several websites have been flagged for posting contents that are meant only to direct users to a page despite the content being totally unrelated to the title.

The other article shared by topnewsph.info, which shares the same title proves to be nothing but a clickbait because the content talks about the meeting of President Duterte and the parents of slain teenager Kian Delos Santos.

Comments made by Duterte supporters range from mockery to direct threats. Name calling is also very noticeable in the comments. Some of the commenters called Trillanes a traitor. In the same breath, they compared Trillanes with slain former Sen. Aquino, whom they referred to as a traitor as well.


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The story was picked up by blogs with names such as duterte4.altervista.org, newsflow.tk, newsflow2017.blogspot.com, timenewsinformation.blogspot.com, newsprimeph.blogspot.com, politico.altervista.org, and more.

The posts were spread widely by different Facebook pages that support the president, such as “Pres. Duterte Community” and “Duterte for a Change,” and even by the page of the supporters of Special Assistant to the President Bong Go, among others. Facebook page “Time News Information,” bearing President Duterte’s photo, also shared the story.

Some netizens shared the link to the story to Facebook groups such as “Marcos Loyalist” and “President Rody Duterte Facebook Army.”

But just like with the case with topnewsph.info, the content was not relevant to the headline at all.

If one would do a quick search, no reliable source quoted Trillanes for saying that he is prepared to die for the freedom of the country.

The post circulated at the height of the national call for justice for slain teenager Kian Delos Santos who was allegedly killed helplessly and brutally by members of Caloocan Police.

Trillanes visited the wake of Delos Santos and spoke to the parents of the 17-year-old. He condemned the brutal killing of the teen.

“Last year pa natin ipinagsisigawan na mali ito. Kung hindi pa sila nahuli ng CCTV camera at nag-alburuto pa yung mamamayan, tuloy-tuloy na ito at hindi ito hihinto,” he was quoted by ABS-CBN News.

The death of Delos Santos has been a big issue that also caught the interest of international media.

A senate hearing was also held to investigate the death of Delos Santos.

 

Source: ( ABS CBN News )

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