Can legal action stop them on their tracks?
We certainly hope so. These unnamed vloggers and assorted, unidentified trolls have been polluting our air with too much dirt and grime.
Last week, Senator Francis ‘’Kiko’’ Pangilinan sued Google Philippines, including its country manager, Bernadette Nacario, and the owners of two YouTube channels that, he claims, have been spreading malicious stories about his family.
The twin action sets a precedent in our fight against the non-stop, free-wheeling dissemination of fake news in today’s society.
The twin landmark court cases should be welcome news to many other victims of rumor mongering instigated by irresponsible vloggers out to make quick money on celebrities and other personalities.
Handled well by our justice system, they are also beneficial to ordinary consumers of news who rely on social media in the hope that what they are getting are accurate and factual.
Spreading fake news has become a money-making industry in the vlogging community, destroying reputations and lives.
Orchestrated by unscrupulous netizens and fake journalists who rely on hearsay and their own personal fabrications of stories, these vlogs flourish in an environment of fakery and indecency.
Sen. Kiko filed charges against two vlog sites, only known as “Starlet” and “Latest Chika.” He said they were responsible for launching by-now-viral videos claiming that he abused his wife, actress Sharon Cuneta, as she was supposedly cheating on him.
Another video claimed Sharon and her daughter, KC Concepcion, were victims of domestic violence in the hands of the senator.
Sharon herself denied the allegations in an hour-long post on her official Instagram account on May 28.
Sen. Kiko also said his office has reported 82 “fake and malicious” videos on YouTube, which was acquired by Google in 2006.
He personally filed the cybercrime complaints with the Department of Justice on July 16.
At the same time, Sen. Kiko sought the help of the National Bureau of Investigation’s Cybercrime Division to track down and determine the identity of the vloggers behind the two aforementioned channels.
Quite often, as we scroll down our gadgets, we are confronted by vlogs flaunting controversial, sensational headlines.
The stories usually involve actors, who are easy targets for malicious, ugly talk. Among recent victims of such ‘’foul play’’ are Nora Aunor, Vic Sotto, Vilma Santos, Alma Moreno, among others.
These actors have been reported by vloggers as either in serious condition in some hospital or are dead.
Vic Sotto is reportedly suing the vlogger who has been spreading rumor that he fathered the child of an actress other than his wife, Pauleen Luna-Sotto.
For the sake of sanity in an already messed up society, we do hope Vic shall join Sen. Kiko in the crusade to stop these vloggers from inflicting more harm to more people.
In this day and age, the power being wielded by social media has become seemingly uncontrollable, beyond our wildest imagination. The sad part is that social media is being used by many in a negative way, and this has to stop.
It has to step up and be more responsive to reports of irresponsibility.