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Duterte did not understand FB action vs. fake pages —IT expert


President Rodrigo Duterte did not understand the reason Facebook took down several accounts and pages allegedly linked to the military and police for “coordinated inauthentic behavior” last week, an IT expert said Tuesday.

In an interview on "Balitanghali," Red Tani of the group Filipino Freethinkers replied in the affirmative when asked if the president did not understand the issue.

“Dahil ang binan po ng Facebook ay ‘yung pamamaraan ng pagkalat ng isang mensahe at hindi ‘yung mensahe mismo. At ang tinutulan po ng Pangulo natin ay ‘yung mensahe at hindi po ‘yung pamamaraan,” Red Tani said.

“So dalawang pong magkahiwalay na issue ‘yun at dapat po pag-isipan ng maigi bago siya gumawa ng kahit anong paba-ban sa Facebook o sa kahit ano pang ibang plataporma,” he added.

On Monday night, Duterte questioned why Facebook should be allowed to operate in the Philippines if it “cannot help” the country.

“Facebook, listen to me. We allow you to operate here hoping that you could help us also. Now, if government cannot espouse or advocate something which is for the good of the people, then what is your purpose here in my country?" Duterte had said.

However, Red Tani stressed that Facebook did not care about the content of the message but how it was propagated.

“Kasi po, yung nangyari po sa Facebook ay merong coordinated inauthentic behaviour na tinatawag. So ito po ay isang malaking grupo na mga tao na nagpapanggap na sila ay ibang tao para magkalat ng isang mensahe,” he said.

“Wala pong sinasabi ang Facebook tungkol sa mensahe; tungkol sa left o tungkol sa right o tungkol sa communist o hindi communist. Wala pong pakialam ang Facebook tungkol sa bagay na ito… Ang pinarusahan po nila dito ay ang paggamit ng mga fake account sa malakawang level,” he later added.

Red Tani also advised the president to support the purging of fake accounts, saying this will encourage the public to believe pro-government posts.

“[D]apat po suportahan nila ang pagtanggal ng mga fake account na ito para pagka merong mga pro-government na message na makikita sa Facebook o sa kahit anong platform, hindi sasabihin ng mga tao na, ‘ay naku baka fake account lang ‘yan o bot lang ‘yan at hindi ako magtitiwala’,” he said.—Joahna Lei Casilao/LDF, GMA News