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Karmina Constantino vows to keep pushing back vs. disinformation

Rowena Papasin | TFC News Vancouver

Posted at May 29 2023 08:54 PM

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The Filipino community in Canada gave a warm welcome to veteran broadcast journalist Karmina Constantino who was in the country for a two-week lecture tour.

The ABS-CBN News Channel anchor visited major Canadian cities as part of her 2022 Marshall McLuhan fellowship.

Karmina Constantino is 2022 Marshall McLuhan fellow

During her talk on freedom and the free press, Constantino traced the rise of disinformation to attacks on journalists in the previous years.

"Kapag tinawag ang journalist na "dilawan" ng presidente, he assumes or labels us right away that we are part of the opposition just because we are doing our job," she said. 'Yun ang talagang nakasisira sa aming mga journalist."

Constantino also cautioned the public against believing in false information peddled by some vloggers.

"Our responsibility is to the public, their responsibility is to themselves," she added. "'Yan ang hindi nakikita ng mga sumusubaybay sa kanila, na hindi naman talaga yung kapakanan ng mga manonood ang isinasa-alang-alang nitong mga vlogger na ito but their own vested interest."

Her call was echoed by the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines-North America.

"If they want to have journalists and media institutions that serve the public, they must protect and fight for those journalists and media institutions," said Nestor Burgos of NUJP-North America.

Filipino-Canadian lawmaker Mable Elmore, meanwhile, said she is alarmed at the situation of journalists in the Philippines.

"The rise of disinformation in the Philippines and in Canada and around the world and really, the erosion of the free press, that’s very concerning but at the same time, I’m inspired by her professionalism and her dedication to really speaking truth to power."

Elmore presented a plaque to Constantino on behalf of the legislature and other organizers of the event.

Despite the challenges, Constantino said she remains steadfast in her duty as a journalist.

"Who wouldn't be inspired by that, knowing that for every question or challenge that you pose, you have your country and your family in your heart and in your mind?" she said. "That's what's keeping me going."