THE ROLE OF MEDIA, LIBRARY, AND ARCHIVES IN THE FIGHT AGAINST MISINFORMATION AND FAKE NEWS
Marites D. Vitug
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