Trillanes wants online trolls, fake news probed

By on January 19, 2017

Trillanes wants online trolls, fake news probed (Photo: Antonio "Sonny" Trillanes IV/Facebook)
Trillanes wants online trolls, fake news probed (Photo: Antonio “Sonny” Trillanes IV/Facebook)

MANILA—Amid the spread of fake news on social media, Sen. Antonio “Sonny” Trillanes IV on Wednesday sought for a probe on “trolls” which he claimed used the internet as a platform for personal or political agenda.

Under Senate Resolution No. 259, Trillanes seeks to “hold the authors, distributors and/or purveyors of the same responsible and/or accountable under the law for the contents they generate and/or disseminate” accountable.

It also seeks to protect the public from “false, erroneous, distorted, fabricated and/or misleading news and information” which could be used for “manipulation.”

Trillanes’ measure urges the Senate Committee on Public Information and Mass Media to probe these online trolls and fake news.

In his resolution, Trillanes lamented that social media has become a platform for political propaganda, deceit and manipulation instead of being a tool for empowerment.

He described a social media troll as ones who “deliberately creates and/or foments discord and conflict on social media sites” through posting comments anonymously.

The senator also claimed that these trolls were creating a “culture of impunity online” by making personal attacks and inappropriate language.

Moreover, he said that it also “threatens the viability and credibility of online journalism, with internet users having few mechanisms to filter news sources.”

“Because of social media trolls, the social media is now being used to create fabricated realities through a network of fake social media accounts intended for trolling and spreading of erroneous and misleading news and information,” Trillanes said in his resolution.

He also claimed that trolls earned as much as USD2,000 monthly for using fake accounts to manipulate social media content and discourse.