Bzzzzz: No word from veteran columnist on fake news

A BROADSHEET columnist, Yen Makabenta of “The Manila Times,” used fake news in his column of Sept. 23 (Saturday) when he lifted a quote supposedly made by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley defending President Duterte and asking individual and nation critics to let him run his country.

The fictitious item (“Superstar speaks...”) was traced to a fake website disguised as an adjunct of Al Jazeera, the news organization based in Dubai. Both the U.S. Embassy press attache and the Al Jazeera correspondent, who are based in Manila, in separate denials said the news was fake. Hayley didn’t deliver or say the quoted text.

The gaffe drew a lot of noise in the media and yet Makabenta’s column of Sept. 25 (Monday) talked about click-bait journalism and the Philippines and President Duterte being targets and victims of it.

Not a word from Makabenta about his use of a purely bogus story that boosted the president’s stock but deceived a big number of his audience.

‘Pedophile’ Gascon

Is Chito Gascon, Commission on Human Rights chief, gay or a pedophile? President Dutertete asked Saturday (Sept. 23). “Mahilig ka sa mga bata...Kaya nagtanong ako, gago ka...”

The day before (Sept. 22), Gascon said the CHR was “deeply disturbed” by the rash of killings, with youths as the victims. (List, at left,)

A joke or a “metaphor”? A late senator’s son called the insult “absurd, ridiculous,” talking of some fingers pointing at the accuser.

PCOO on trolls

A Malacañang communications official who visited Cebu last Thursday dismissed a question about a research discovering that trolls defending President Duterte and attacking his critics were identified as trolls traced to the PCOO.

He brushed it off by saying that trolls “are here to stay,” just leave them be. Neat.

TIP US OFF. TELL US ABOUT IT.

[paseares@gmail.com]

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