Category: Uncategorized

Let’s not accept disinformation in media as normal

10 things journalists and audiences can do By Jason A. Baguia [From his talk “Rebuilding a Civilization of Truth” at the 2019 Cebu Press Freedo Week media forum conducted by the Cebu…

Continue Reading

10 things journalists and audiences can do

By Jason A. Baguia

[From his talk “Rebuilding a Civilization of Truth” at the 2019 Cebu Press Freedo Week media forum conducted by the Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC) on Sept. 19, 2019 at MBF Cebu Press Center, Lahug, Cebu City. The other speaker, Fr. Ramon D. Echica, San Carlos Major Seminary dean, talked on fake news from the viewpoint of a non-journalist.]

THERE  are better things for journalists and their audiences to do than accept that the world has entered a post-truth era or that what comes out of the press is fake by default. 

Disinformation becomes normal only when people sit back and do nothing to promote a culture of truth-seeking and truth-telling. 

Fake news, spread at internet speeds may have been used by various entities to secure electoral victories around the world in the last half decade, but here are some things we can do to foil machinations that try to give lies the final word.

1. Know your fact-checking resources. On Facebook, look below the link to any news story to see if it has been flagged by moderators for being deceptive. Alternatively, check the veracity of a claim through websites with fact checking resources such as Snopes, Vera Files, and Rappler.

2. Remember that social media is not the entirety of the internet. Cultivate a habit of visiting legitimate news websites instead of relying solely on social networks for news and information. News websites continue to submit to the discipline of verification and to present stories in the order of their importance, in contrast to social networks where reports are subject to the spin of those who post links and are ranked according to measures of audience engagement.

3. Remember that social media is not journalism, though journalists use social media. Mere possession of a computer keyboard and camera does not turn you into a journalist and photojournalist. Be wary of social media contacts and accounts that deliberately or otherwise pass themselves off as news outlets, and refer to links from established news sources when discussing matters of public interest.

4. Remember the humanity of every person in the media ecology. Disinformation thrives on character assassination and glorification. Refrain from sharing stories that hysterically demean or exalt public figures. These tend to be propaganda that reduces persons to their real and imagined faults or grabs due and undue credit for them.

5. Be mindful of rhetoric and know how to analyze discourse. Is the campaign against the scourge of illegal narcotics accurately called a “war on drugs” or is this phrase a shrewd attempt to legitimize killings, including of innocents that in fact are tantamount to disproportionate use of force. Is not the language of war being used to justify the indiscriminate ending of lives in addressing the prevalence of drug addiction?



6. Know the political economy of the media. Legacy media organizations are known quantities. Knowing who owns them and the politics of the owners, the public can gauge the limits of their critical reporting and commentary. It is not easy, however, to determine who are behind new media especially fake news websites. Pay attention to research and journalism that exposes these financiers and prime movers. Knowing who they are can enable comprehension of the agenda behind their media content.

7. Know how to spot fake news. Where many fake stories are concerned, grammar is atrocious, photographs are un-sourced, writers are anonymous, sources are fictional, webpage layout is sophomoric, website names are comical, and editorial boards are reclusive and publicity-shy.

8. Read history with a critical eye. Has a historical narrative under siege already left room for readers to be critical of its victors, losers, and fence-sitters? If this is the case, who stands to benefit from any campaign to belie it? Does an alternative history or historical revision lead to greater pluralism and social harmony, or does it merely polarize voters and enable a few to divide the spoils of electoral conquest? 

9. Think long-term when handling discourse and information. When words are weaponized to exhaust dissenters and silence alternative voices, a regime is being propped up by a rickety throne of half-truths, and its supporters will find themselves by the wayside as soon as the regime — just like every dishonest one does — implodes.

10. Leave your echo chambers, burst your filter bubbles. Everyone praised the emperor’s new clothes until a child pointed out that he was making a spectacle of himself in the nude. The whole world thought the sun revolved around the earth until Nicolaus Copernicus posited that planets orbited the sun. Deceivers and their fake stories live off an audience’s need for stability and dogma amid the complexity and dynamism of socio-politics. But an illusory sense of stability — free from those who would challenge one’s views — is grossly unethical and unsafe. One enjoys it while the world burns, and fires take no sides.

 


 Jason A. Baguia is assistant professor on mass-communication  at University of the Philippines Cebu.  He used to write an opinion column and editorials for Cebu Daily News.


 

No Comments on Let’s not accept disinformation in media as normal

How metro mayors and the governor deal with media

Most elected public officials affirm the often-avowed policy of staying “open and transparent” to the public through media. But, as new leaders in their respective local governments, they may modify p.r….

Continue Reading


Most elected public officials affirm the often-avowed policy of staying “open and transparent” to the public through media. But, as new leaders in their respective local governments, they may modify p.r. method or style and degree of press access, for the LG official to “transmit effectively” his message.

It helps not just the working press but also news consumers to be familiar with how news sources manage relations with media.


THE new mayors of Lapu-Lapu City and Cebu City — Junard “Ahong” Chan and Edgardo Labella — promise they will  be available to reporters for interviews. Evading inquiries from journalists is not their brand of politics, they say.

Valdemar Chiong, returnee mayor of Naga City,  had a bad experience with a reporter but will still hold press conferences “when necessary.”  Talisay City Mayor Samsam Gullas will grant “regular” press-cons. Mandaue City’s Jonas Cortes, another returnee mayor, may shed off his previous habit of rarely talking with medial he had before his new mandate a three-term stint at City Hall and one term in Congress.

The returnee governor, Gwen Garcia, a p.r. believer, is expected to hold press-cons and interviews as often as she sees need for them. Continue Reading

No Comments on How metro mayors and the governor deal with media

Robredo, Sitoy on ‘fake news’: did Tiglao, Rappler fabricate?

◘ Related Media’s Public column: “’Unpatriotic journalists’: Tiglao blasts ‘false writers’ abroad” (Nov. 24, 2017) TWO public officials complained about “fake news” this week: ◘ Vice President Leni Robredo on…

Continue Reading

◘ Related Media’s Public column: “’Unpatriotic journalists’: Tiglao blasts ‘false writers’ abroad” (Nov. 24, 2017)

TWO public officials complained about “fake news” this week:

◘ Vice President Leni Robredo on April 23 called out as “fake news” the item in Rigoberto Tiglao’s column in  “Manila Times” that she talked with European Parliament officials during her recent trip to Germany and persuaded them to pass a resolution condemning extrajudicial killings (EJKs) in the Philippines. False, Robredo said, she “never saw or spoke with any E.U. official” while she was abroad. Continue Reading

No Comments on Robredo, Sitoy on ‘fake news’: did Tiglao, Rappler fabricate?

Seares: Not being a journalist is no excuse for peddling fake news

“Ang ginagawa ko, di po ako journalist…” — Mocha Uson, PCOO assistant secretary who also writes a blog, during Senate hearing on bill seeking to criminalize fake news THERE’S no…

Continue Reading

“Ang ginagawa ko, di po ako journalist…”
— Mocha Uson, PCOO assistant secretary who also writes a blog, during Senate hearing on bill seeking to criminalize fake news

THERE’S no universally accepted definition of a journalist. Standards and definitions vary. Each group or sector engaged in communication or with media has its own concept of what a journalist is.  Continue Reading

No Comments on Seares: Not being a journalist is no excuse for peddling fake news

Legal limits on election coverage, ads

What candidates, journalists cannot do during elections With less than eight months to go before the 2016 Philippine presidential elections, Filipinos will again look to media to provide them with…

Continue Reading

What candidates, journalists cannot do during elections

With less than eight months to go before the 2016 Philippine presidential elections, Filipinos will again look to media to provide them with credible and critical sources of information concerning the candidates, their electoral campaign and political agenda to enable them to freely and intelligently exercise their right of suffrage.

Election propaganda in any and all mediums of communication is allowed for all political parties and candidates, whether local or national, but under some limitations such as those on authorized election expenditures, observance of truth in advertising and subject to the supervision and regulation by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

The Comelec is tasked to supervise the use and employment of media—print, radio, television and, more recently, Internet technology—relative to the holding of the elections. Continue Reading

No Comments on Legal limits on election coverage, ads

Dreams for Cebu’s press center

By Jovy T. Gerodias and Rebelander S. Basilan Clock ticking on return of press center building to government hands People with common interests must have a venue for learning and…

Continue Reading

By Jovy T. Gerodias and Rebelander S. Basilan

Clock ticking on return of press center building to government hands

People with common interests must have a venue for learning and camaraderie. Coming together in one place from time to time, exchanging ideas and developing their craft together, not only strengthens their bond but also helps them grow as a community.

For members of the Cebu press, reunions and group learning often happen in the Marcelo B. Fernan (MBF) Cebu Press Center. Sitting in Barangay Lahug, Cebu City, the center hosts activities organized by media organizations, mostly seminars and forums during the Cebu Press Freedom Week every September.

Members of the Cebu News Workers Multi-Purpose Cooperative (Newscoop), which holds office in the building, also conduct their general assembly in the center; as do stakeholders of the Cebu Citizens-Press Council, who meet four times a year. Continue Reading

No Comments on Dreams for Cebu’s press center

Pedro Calomarde: Early environment crusader

Pedro D. Calomarde, editor and columnist of the Morning Times, which was published from 1943 to 1986, was one of the early supporters of the fight to preserve the environment,…

Continue Reading

Pedro D. Calomarde, editor and columnist of the Morning Times, which was published from 1943 to 1986, was one of the early supporters of the fight to preserve the environment, in particular the fight to stop dynamite fishing in Cebu province and the rest of the region.

In more than one issue in his column in the 1960s and ‘70s, he took up the matter of the government’s lack of will to impose sanctions against disastrous fishing, such as the use of explosives and of the bait fishermen call “kuskus,” which is mixed with cyanide to kill the fish. The bait killing the fish is dangerous for humans, too.

“It is very lamentable to state that the government agencies fail both in the sea and on the land. The blast fishers are the kings of the sea.”

He wrote, “Unless the government can take initiative to change the attitude of the people from indifference to purposeful cooperation, the illegal fishing will continue insulting the agencies of the government.”

Calomarde was also said to have numbered his columns, which tackled various issues, until they ran into the thousands. But samples of those have not been found.

(CJJ9 was published in hardcopy in September 2014.)

No Comments on Pedro Calomarde: Early environment crusader

Cebu Press at a glance

The only community media gallery in the Philippines is found at the Museo Sugbo on M.J. Cuenco Ave. in Barangay Tejero, Cebu City. Called the Cebu Journalism and Journalists (CJJ)…

Continue Reading

The only community media gallery in the Philippines is found at the Museo Sugbo on M.J. Cuenco Ave. in Barangay Tejero, Cebu City.

Museo Sugbo

Called the Cebu Journalism and Journalists (CJJ) Gallery, the project was initiated by the Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC) in 2009 after CCPC executive director Pachico Seares sought to put up an exhibit dedicated to Cebu media.

After initial talks between broadcaster Bobby Nalzaro and Seares with Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia on locating the gallery in the Cebu Provincial Government-owned Museo Sugbo, Seares obtained approval for the project from the CCPC en banc on June 25, 2009.

On March 11, 2010, the CCPC en banc approved the memorandum of agreement between the Province of Cebu, represented by Garcia, and the CCPC, represented by its president, Dr. Pureza Oñate, to use space in the Museo Sugbo for the exhibit for 25 years, free of charge. The contract is renewable for another 25 years. Continue Reading

No Comments on Cebu Press at a glance

Watching media cover the elections

A year-long effort to enrich election coverage In the highly politicized Philippines, elections are major events. In the May 2010 elections, candidates, promises, foibles and scandals fell under media scrutiny….

Continue Reading

A year-long effort to enrich election coverage

In the highly politicized Philippines, elections are major events.

In the May 2010 elections, candidates, promises, foibles and scandals fell under media scrutiny. But the media were themselves subject to examination.

As part of its mandate to improve the journalism craft, the Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC) held a series of consultations from June 2009 to March 2010 to improve local media’s coverage of the 2010 elections. Continue Reading

No Comments on Watching media cover the elections

Type on the field below and hit Enter/Return to search