We can't stop people from sharing fake news: Andanar

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 04 2017 11:40 AM

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Communications Secretary Martin Andanar on Wednesday said public education is important to stop the spread of fake news.

"We cannot stop people from sharing fake news even after they have been determined to be fake. Therefore, public education is a must," Andanar said in his statement read by Communications Usec. Joel Sy Egco during a Senate probe on the proliferation of fake news.

In his statement, Andanar said the tendency of netizens to exaggerate and lie at times is part of their rights to freedom of expression and opinion.

"We must remember that in Article 3, Section 4 of the Constitution our tendencies to exaggerate or project one-sided opinion or even lying at times, are protected rights in the form of free speech and expression," he said.

He said a ban on fake news would mean the creation of a "well-represented body" that would police fake news and those who spread it online.

"We are not in the business of regulating ideas," he said.

He also pointed out that any computer-literate individual capable of altering data or information or even news legitimately published by recognized news organizations could do so. "Who will go after them?" he said.

Andanar was summoned by the Senate committee on public information and mass media but was unable to attend the hearing due to a prior engagement.