THE ROLE OF ME­DIA, LI­BRARY, AND AR­CHIVES IN THE FIGHT AGAINST MIS­IN­FOR­MA­TION AND FAKE NEWS

Marites D. Vitug

PLAI Congress 2018 Program - - PLENARY SESSION | DAY 2 -

Rap­pler Email ad­dress: [email protected]­pler.com Ab­stract

The Philip­pine me­dia con­tinue to bat­tle false news and dis­in­for­ma­tion, a phe­nom­e­non that started since the pres­i­den­tial elec­tion cam­paign in 2016. This cul­ture of dis­in­for­ma­tion has car­ried on into gov­ern­ment when Ro­drigo Duterte be­came pres­i­dent.

Li­braries and ar­chives are vi­tal in this push­back, in re­search and fact-check­ing ef­forts by me­dia or­ga­ni­za­tions. Li­braries are no longer just sanc­tu­ar­ies of book lovers, stu­dents, and re­searchers. And li­brar­i­ans are no longer just man­agers and cu­ra­tors. They should call at­ten­tion to fal­si­ties, backed by their rich knowl­edge of printed and on­line re­sources.

A host of fac­tors con­trib­ute to the pro­lif­er­a­tion of “fake news”: tech­nol­ogy en­ables it, politi­cians and their sup­port­ers use it to de­stroy en­e­mies, ri­vals, and crit­ics, in­clud­ing the me­dia, in an en­vi­ron­ment that is highly po­lar­ized. Ul­ti­mately, the goal is to keep a strong­hold on power. An­other fac­tor is the in­volve­ment of ad­ver­tis­ing and pub­lic re­la­tions pro­fes­sion­als as “ar­chi­tects of dis­in­for­ma­tion.”

What is Philip­pine me­dia do­ing? Sem­i­nars on me­dia lit­er­acy— par­tic­u­larly on spot­ting “fake news” and fight­ing dis­in­for­ma­tion—are gain­ing trac­tion, es­pe­cially among the young. Fact-check­ing is thriv­ing in news out­lets such as Rap­pler and Vera Files. Jour­nal­ists as well as ne­ti­zens and stu­dents con­tinue to speak out against false news. Key­words: Philip­pine me­dia; fake news; dis­in­for­ma­tion; me­dia lit­er­acy

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