Wed, 27 May 2020

ILIGAN CITY, Dec. 14 (PIA) -- There are two types of wrong information or fake news, namely disinformation and Misinformation.

This was the topic discussed by Philippine Information Agency Director-General Usec. Harold E. Clavite.

Clavite explained these two types during the Information Volunteers Network (IVN) Conference in Iligan City attended by around 100 participants from various sectors.

Disinformation pertains to the intent of misleading the public by creating false or inaccurate stories, while misinformation is being 'wrongly-guided' by a story due to insufficient knowledge without the intention of deceiving the audience.

"We're declaring war against fake news," said Clavite.

The Philippines is explicitly labeled as the 'world's social media capital' in 2018, with social media usage averaging four hours and 30 minutes a day.

According to the PIA official, the public should be responsible in sharing information on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

"We became an echo chamber because of our beliefs, biases, personal views. Instead of creating a social media network online to nurture relationships and communities, it became an arena of chaos. That's the reason why you (the audience) are all here, the change starts with you, with us, as one of the contributors of this confusion," said Clavite.

To arm the stakeholders, Clavite gave tips on identifying fake news.

This includes double-checking the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) or web address of an article, the date of publication, the author or writer, and also the content of the story.

He also advised participants how to identify fake pages and website and troll accounts.

Also important are the correct spelling of a person's name or the company/organization's name, profile picture, number of friends, followers, and even the group members are essential.

"By next year, we will have our mobile application ready for phone users to download. And as it progresses, we will conduct Media and Information Literacy (MIL) fora in partnership with the Department of Education that focuses on cyber wellness for the youth," said Clavite.

By the end of this year, the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) through PIA will drive Dismiss Disinformation (Dismiss Dis) as a nationwide movement with many significant advocacies.

One of these is the implementation of Government Information Centers (GIC) as hubs of essential government news.

Another is the creation of the association of government information officers that will serve as bearers of these facts.

"Dismiss Dis" is a flagship project of PCOO spearheaded by Sec. Martin Andanar, which is pushed to thwart the proliferation of fake news.

It encourages all sectors of the society to be vigilant and help the national and local government units in stopping the spread of inaccurate information shared on social media. (Christine Lyn G. Viajante/PIA Iligan)

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