Solon defends proposed jail time for 'Marites' spreading fake news

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 09 2022 05:39 PM

ABS-CBN News/File
Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA — One of the lawmakers proposing to penalize fake news defended on Tuesday the measure, saying it is meant to prevent all "Marites," a slang for fake news peddlers and rumormongers, from causing chaos.

"Kung sino nag-propagate ng fake news at yung nag-share nito are the ones liable under the hopefully... amended act ng Cybercrime Prevention Act," An Waray Rep. Florencio Gabriel Noel, one of the authors of House Bill 2971 that seeks to amend the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 to include penalties for "fake news", said.

Noel said that under their bill, the "Marites" could be jailed for as long as 8 years for fake news posts.

"Warning natin sa mga gustong mag-Marites para lang sa kanilang baka personal satisfaction, mag-ingat tayo para 'di tayo makasakit," he said.

Noel said he leaves it to the Committee on the Revision of Laws to determine the fine.

"With regard the fine, the civil liability, I wasn't even thinking of that. Mine is just to prevent talaga what we call now fake news or nagma-Marites news lang diyan," he said.

The bill defines fake news as referring to misinformation and disinformation of stories, facts, and news which is presented as a fact, the veracity of which cannot be confirmed, with the purpose of distorting the truth and misleading its audience.

It will penalize the creation and dissemination of fake news as defined, committed through a computer system or any other similar means which may be devised in the future.

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