An open letter penned by UK national Malcolm Conlan seeking Leni Robredo’s answers regarding her ambiguous stance on free speech yet she wants to regulate social media has been doing the rounds on Facebook.
In the open letter, Conlan began by explicitly stating the intent of his letter and that is to talk about Robredo’s statement on alleged ‘fake news’ and her stance on regulating social media to combat it.
Conlan mentioned to Robredo that he just read her recent statement of clarification on Facebook re proposal to regulate social media, perhaps after realizing the folly of her statement.
Here’s Leni Robredo’s statement in full, lifted from official FB page.
Conlan used Leni Robredo’s clarificatory statement as a basis to ask Leni Robredo several questions that should make the VP cringe on her seat, knowing that her statement proposing to regulate social media is irreconcilable with her “I respect freedom of free speech” statement.
Conlan ended his post by leaving Robredo with the thought provoking question, “Why are my views or my right to freedom of speech and expression or indeed the views of any Pro-Duterte bloggers any less valid than your views?”
You may read Conlan’s full FB post below.
AN OPEN LETTER TO VICE PRESIDENT LENI ROBREDO,
Dear Ma’am VP Leni Robredo
I am writing to you following extensive media coverage, after your recent interview in Dagupan on your position on alleged ‘fake news’ and your views on imposing some kind of accountability or regulation on social media entities to combat ‘fake news’.
I hope you don’t mind Ma’am, but I also noticed from your statement of clarification on your Facebook page that you accept that individuals have a right to freedom of speech and you would not want to curtail that. On that basis, I would like to ask you the following:
If you are happy with an individuals right to ‘freedom of speech’ why have pro-Duterte social media bloggers like Mark Lopez had their accounts shut down or restricted for expressing their personal opinions or views or even for sharing videos of them attending rallies etc?
Why are the views of the opposition, the likes of Antonio Trillianes, Gary Alejano, Rappler or Pinoy Ako Blog on alleged EJK’s, any more valid than mine, a supporter of President Duterte and the War on Drugs who believes that his actions and that of his administration are perfectly legitimate for example?
Who determines what is Fake News and what is real news? Rappler? VeraFiles? Facebook fact checkers? Isn’t this a way or curtailing or banning freedom of speech?
The LP, Yellows and even yourself are perfectly free to roam around the globe, sensationalising the ‘War on Drugs’ and plucking wild, random figures from the sky on alleged ‘killings’ then posting articles, news reports and other bias media on Facebook and other social media platforms with no regulation or fact checking whatsoever, is that fair Ma’am?
Why isn’t Rappler, Pinoy Ako Blog, the Facebook pages of Antonio Trillianes, Gary Alejano and other popular figures in the Philippines also shut down for spreading fake news (in my opinion) on alleged EJK’s that don’t actually exist at all in the Philippines?
Why are my views or my right to freedom of speech and expression or indeed the views of any Pro-Duterte bloggers any less valid than your views?
I await your reply with Interest.
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