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    Tuesday, June 27, 2017

    Lawyer reprimands CBCP for “groundless anti-fake news campaign”

    The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) recently issued a list that tags at least 29 websites or news portals that according to them carry fake or unverified contents. The said move or initiative taken by the religious association garnered speculation from the public.

    Some of which were Dr. Ethel Pineda and Atty. Ahmedy Paglinawan. 

    Scrutinizing the CBCP for their their “groundless” claims to ward off the spread of fake news, Pineda wrote in one of her Facebook posts that:

    “These men in long dresses and funny hats are now telling us what to read, treating us like children who cannot discern for themselves what is true and what is trash….And what is fake news for the CBCP? Anything that runs counter to their belief that President Duterte is an unfit leader.”

    Sharing Dr. Pineda’s post in his own Facebook account, Atty. Paglinawan had enumerated a 10-list set of advices for the CBCP regarding their so-called “campaign” against fake news reports by several news portals. 

    Atty. Paglinawan enumerated 10 things as pieces of advice addressed to the CBCP. All these, revolves around the idea that CBCP will eventually face civil lawsuit cases for causing several news portals moral damages by tagging them as sources of online “fake news”.

    1. Look at your list again. But this time, have a calculator ready at hand
    2. Determine which ones in the list have paid ads on them
    3. Determine the face value of each ad and multiply each by the average number of visitors to the site or page on a daily basis. Now add them all up. That amount is the base amount you will pay as actual damage per day
    4. Multiply that by 12 months and there's your annual base
    5. Get a hold of the civil code and find the provisions on damages, paying particular attention to the ones labelled "moral”

    The lawyer initially claimed, asking the CBCP to compute  the possible amount of damage they are about to cause each website that was specified on their list. Atty. Paglinawan then continued:

    6. Now imagine a person whom you believe is an artful, crafty purveyor of fake news, now applying his talents in making up evidence to be the basis for collecting the moral thingie money you have read about earlier
    7. Now, start crunching on that calculator, mindful of who and how much your prospective lawyer/s would be, in order to get to an amount which shall be the relative amount that you'd be screwed of by the owner of the site/page/blog
    8. Now imagine how many of those in your list will likely sue you after reading this advise. And grimace at the new amount you see on the display of your calculator

    The last two statements of Paglinawan were implicitly sarcastic as if he was trying to imply that the CBCP is bound to face a huge battle-so huge that they have to “pray” for God to grant them strength.

    9. Now, breathe. And pray. For strength. That will guide you. Towards your removal of names from the list. Until it is a blank list
    10. Thank god for all the wisdom found on this earth

    Before the lawyer officially ended his post, he acknowledged Rappler and also managed to give a small piece of another sarcastic advice.

    “As for Rappler, i'd say continue doing a good job. Mind the ceiling while walking indoors. Cranial vacuum makes balloons of people,” Atty. Paglinawan ended.

    Source: Ahmedy Paglinawan | Facebook
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