Statement: Bloggers for Freedom

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We, concerned Filipino bloggers, stand for the rights to free expression and to free speech. And our first responsibility is to protect these rights.

We thus stand with Rappler, its right to exist, the rights of its working journalists and contributors, and the rights of its community of readers.

We stand against moves to silence and scare journalists, bloggers and media practitioners just because the President and his ardent supporters dislike their news and views.

Now is a time for making choices amid battles between truth and lies, debate and dissonance, democracy and dictatorship.

We sign our names here to tell everyone we have made a choice. We are bloggers for freedom.

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Taking a stand

When I was in college, I joined the League of Filipino Students (LFS), a group known for protesting against state injustices and fighting for the rights of the poor and marginalized Filipinos. It never felt like it was a good fit for me.

During discussions about how certain laws were supposed to be unjust, I found myself being the devil’s advocate. I would always argue for the debated law and how it could be beneficial if only it were implemented properly. I further affirmed that I was wrong for the movement on the first rally that I attended when we had not even gone beyond University Ave in UP Diliman and I thought, “Ay, ang init. Kayo nalang.” I then promptly left, enjoyed a cake at the Chocolate Kiss Cafe, and ended my rather short stint as an activist. Or so I thought.

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Taking back the internet from the trolls

In the digital age, both information and misinformation are readily available for anyone with a computer or a smartphone. Discerning what is real and what isn’t is not always easy especially for digital novices because there are websites and social media pages that are created with the intent  to deceive. 

This kind of deception has proven effective in getting politicians elected both in the country and abroad. The profile of the victims cover pretty much all academic and social standing. Social media savvy individuals aren’t even immune. I have personally seen friends that have fallen prey to fake articles posted by paid political influencers that forward their agenda by promoting half-truths. 

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