Sotto 'apology' sparks online outrage

By Kathlyn dela Cruz,

Posted at Nov 13 2012 09:06 PM | Updated as of Nov 14 2012 06:14 AM

MANILA, Philippines -- Senator Vicente "Tito" Sotto III's latest plagiarism denial has again sparked outrage among Filipino netizens.

On micro-blogging site Twitter, the word "Sotto" trended nationwide Tuesday afternoon after the senator apologized to the Kennedy family for using and translating without attribution some parts of the late US Senator Robert F. Kennedy's 1966 Day of Affirmation speech.

While Sotto said sorry, he still insisted that he did not commit plagiarism because he allegedly did not claim  a portion of Kennedy's speech as his own.

He said, "Copying or imitation is the highest form of flattery. If it upsets the Kennedy family, I'm sorry. But that is not the intention that we have."

Many netizens took to social media to express their dismay over Sotto's perceived lack of sincerity in his apology.
Twitter user JC Jimenez said, "Reading tweets about sotto's apology to the kennedy's but from the looks of it its a lame apology.. lacks sincerity."

Blogie Robillo tweeted, "This wasn't an apology. In fact, I find it very insulting to the Kennedys."

"Nagsosorry, pero may bawi sa dulo. #AnoBaTalaga Sotto?!," @kateringk said.

@ThisGuyVester tweeted, "Grabe! Tito Sotto's apology regarding plagiarism sounds ARROGANT and NOT so sincere at all!"

Netizen Robert Young Jr. asked, "Sen. Sotto, 'Copying is the highest form of flattery.' Does he want the Kennedy family to thank him for plagiarizing Sen. Kennedy speech?"

Twitter user @iamJAFierce, likewise, asked, "What if we copied your name and signature and use it for illegal use, will that flatter you sotto?"

"Theme song of the day: Ego. "I gotta big EGO, such a huge EGO"- Sotto," said Jayson Naval.

Some netizens, meanwhile, reminded voters that they should be wise in voting for government officials to avoid a similar incident in the future.

Novice Puncturer tweeted, "Alam ni Sotto kung anong ginagawa nya, he's coasting on this issue. Alam nyo na kung sino sisisihin pag nahalal sya uli (read: VOTERS)."

Nicole Yu, whose username is @kneecoalyou, said, "What is wrong with you Senator Sotto!!!!! ANNOYING. This is exactly why we should all think before we vote (esp when voting for celebrities)."

The hashtag #iGoogleNaYan also trended locally on Tuesday evening as netizens used it to talk about Sotto's future speeches.

Netizen Aila D. Garcia said, "New speech for Sotto, #iGoogleNaYan #sinottocopy."

Twitter user @yogon, likewise, said, "Tito Sotto's next turno en contra speeches #iGoogleNaYan."

"Ano kayang magandang sabihin sa speech?" -Tito Sotto #iGoogleNaYan :))))))))," @IanPunsalan tweeted.

While Sotto was being criticized by most of the Filipino netizens, some social media users also came to his defense.

Some of them said that people should just move on from the issue and stop dropping judgments on the controversial senator.

LR Danao-Dela Cruz, whose username is @thenow_delacruz, said "Tired of the Sotto ish. Let's move on and learn from this. Mas mganda kung pgtuunan ng pansin paano mttapos ang prob na traffic sa EDSA."

Likewise, Brother Bear tweeted, "Di ko nilalahat. Ano bang problema nyong mga galit kay Sen Sotto. Sinampahan nyo pa ng reklamo sa Ethics Committee. Nagsorry na nga sya di ba?"

"Dapat nga magpasalamat pa sila if na quote ni Sotto yung mga blog nila that means my laman yun, may kwenta," @DelarosaGERALD said.

Netizen Christine Mae tweeted, "Hmm I don't get why people are treating Tito Sotto like he's the most horrible person in the world. But hey I'm not saying that what he did was right. Just give the man a break. He's not the first or only person who have copied someone else's work. So don't act as if it's something new, cause in the Philippines... it's not! There are more important issues that we should be thinking about. #JustSaying #MyOpinion"