CEBU CITIZENS-PRESS COUNCIL STATEMENT
March 6, 2018
of ‘fake news’
The Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC) today released its definition of “fake news” or “false news.”
In five paragraphs, the definition tells what “fake news” is, what it is not, when standards of journalism are violated, and scope of content.
Amid confusing use of the phrase, CCPC believes defining “fake news” and laying down journalism norms will help conversation and debate on the controversial subject.
Pachico A. Seares, CCPC executive director, said the definition sees “fake news” from the viewpoint of media and the public it serves. “The legal definition is for lawmakers to make,” Seares said, referring to two pending bills in the Senate and the House that seek to penalize “fake news.”
Started last Dec. 12, 2017 at the MBF Cebu Press Center, consultations were held by CCPC with representatives of Cebu Media Legal Aid (Cemla), Cebu Association of Communication Educators (Cace), and the mass-com students group Cebu Federation of Journalism and Communication Students.
The panel’s initial statement defining “fake news” and its standards eventually evolved into the version adopted and now publicly released, after more vetting by journalists, lawyers and civic leaders.
Cherry Ann Lim, CCPC deputy director, said the council’s statement on “fake news” is not final. It may still be reviewed and revised as conditions change. Journalism instructor-newspaper columnist Jason Baguia, a member of the panel, said it is a “working definition.”
What ‘fake news’
is. What it is not.
Council [CCPC] definition)
“Fake news” or “false news” is fabricated
content presented as factual information
in the guise of news.
Mistakes in reporting and editing, made
in good faith in the rush of deadline, are
not “fake news” or “false news.” Still such
errors violate journalism standards and shall
be avoided or promptly corrected.
Careful reporting and editing help
prevent publication of “fake news” or “false
news.” Diligent fact-checking hastens exposure
of misinformation and falsehood in content.
Published content violates journalism
(a) It is materially or substantially
contrary to facts;
(b) It is published with knowledge that
it is false or with reckless disregard of
the facts; and/or
(c) It is deceptive, as its real nature
or origin of publication is concealed or
disguised; or it is malicious, as it
misleads for personal profit or partisan
ends, or tends to inflict harm, sow
hate, or devalue norms of traditional media.
Content shall include not only text or
words but also photographs, video clips,
graphics and other material presented as news