Senator Leila de Lima is pushing for a social media ban in the Philippines, according to the articles being shared on Facebook by pages like Mr. Riyoh, Favradio FM, and ADMIN FIRE.
Mr. Riyoh, one of President Rodrigo Duterte’s vocal supporters on social media, even asked whether the article is true or just satire, after calling de Lima names. But in his comment under the same post, he added: “di kasi nila ma control ang lumalabas sa social media eh! Hahahah kaya gus2 nilang ipatanggal! Hahahah!”
The Admin Fire FB page seemed to have taken the article seriously, given the caption. And Favradio FM certainly believed the article to be true.
According to the article, which was published by Favradio FM, de Lima has made a proposal to the Philippines Senate to ban social media use in the Philippines because it has been “abused by the Filipino youth and the addiction is growing rapidly.” The senator even reportedly said that the unemployment rate in the country is not due to the lack of jobs but due to the laziness of the Filipinos.
De Lima was also quoted saying: “They would rather spend time on the internet spreading false information about me. It will be banned.”
The article also said that the senator accused the Filipino youth of not looking for a job or trying to complete higher education because they “spend all their time on Facebook spreading malicious information about her.”
Another quote attributed to de Lima said: “I understand they want to support their leader. Yes, I have no problem but you don’t spend all your precious time circulating bad information about me while you could have used that to work. This is complete laziness.”
The article took note of the series of fake articles about the senator that are spreading online, with some hoaxes even claiming that de Lima has resigned from her post.
Checking the quotes that were said to have been uttered by de Lima, but we only found them being shared by random blogs, with articles that are exact copies of the one shared by Favradio. No other news outlet covered that supposed move from de Lima about banning social media, which already made the article’s veracity questionable.
We checked out Favradio’s source and it turned out to be a website called metro-uk.com. No, this is different from UK newspaper Metro UK, whose website is at metro.co.uk. The same article was also shared by another noted source of fake articles Aljazeera-tv.com, which entitled its hoax report “De Lima says Filipino youth are lazy.”
When we looked at the other articles published by metro-uk.com, the website turned out to be fond of sharing a lot of fake articles. Among such are articles about Usain Bolt donating $5 million to Cebu schools, 22 people getting arrested after attempting coup against Duterte, Asians possibly getting visa-free travel opportunities to the US, US President Barack Obama calling de Lima abnormal, and more.
As a source of news articles, metro-uk.com cannot be trusted. The fake news enumerated above should be enough proof.
Moreover, de Lima has merely expressed her support for the campaign against the fake news and false memes circulating on social media. She is aware of all the fake reports about her, but she said she acknowledged the differences in people’s views and opinions.
“I acknowledge the differing views and opinions on issues that matter to majority of our people. You may or may not agree with me all the times, and that is perfectly fine with me. Like many of you, however, I also resent all and every deliberate and malicious attempt to curse, trash, degrade, humiliate and even intimidate our people,” de Lima said in her statement.
She noted, however, that he Filipinos’ freedom of speech should not be used to damage other people’s credibility.
“In our democratic society, the freedom of speech we all enjoy is not a license to smear the reputation and ruin the credibility of other people. I respect your expression of dissent and even frustration, but I will not tolerate any attempt to denigrate and much less, to silence our democracy,” she added.
While she commended GMA News Online’s #HindiTama initiate to stop hoaxes online and Rappler’s #NoPlaceForHate campaign to stop the insults and hate on social media, Senator de Lima did not say anything about banning Facebook and other social media sites. Favradio and metro-uk.com’s articles are fake!
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