Congressman says Sotto's 'one person, one Facebook account ' vs trolls difficult to implement

Published June 23, 2021, 10:06 PM

by Ben Rosario

Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III’s “One person, one Facebook account” proposal against troll armies may be difficult to implement without violating the data privacy right of users.

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Bayan Muna Rep. Ferdinand Gaite made this comment as he pointed out that Facebook is already doing its part in stopping or limiting troll armies from conducting smear campaign against persons and in spreading fake news.

Sotto said the proposal of limiting individuals from opening more than one Facebook account is meant at countering moves by trolls in spoiling the country’s bid for a credible and honest elections.

Troll farms are being activated by an incumbent undersecretary, Senator Panfilo Lacson has claimed.

“Facebook already tracks and restricts accounts engaged in coordinated inauthentic behavior or troll operations as we’ve seen in the take down of several accounts linked to the security sector and those based in China meddling in our local politics,” said Gaite.

The partylist lawmaker said that based on information gathered, it is clear that the operation of troll farms is being funded out of people’s taxes.

The re-activation of the troll farms was initiated in an apparent bid to destroy the credibility of candidates in the 2022 elections and at the same time promote the candidacy of certain bets.

“Instead of restricting the general population, what must be stopped are government-funded troll farms,” he said.

However, Gaite failed to present any suggestion on how this should be carried out.

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Recently, Quirium, a Sweden-based digital rights group, revealed that the DOST and the AFP are engaged in cyberattacks against alternative media websites. There could be possible violations of Republic Act 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 in these operations.