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Not today

Cong Corrales .

WHERE will these social media trolls go now that the midterm elections are over? I guess they will go into hibernation and will go on hyperdrive again in 2022. However, I must say I learned a lot from these trolls during the campaign period up to the very end.

On Friday, in their attempt at a Hail Mary pass, trolls circulated a supposed disqualification decision against Mayor Oscar Moreno that was allegedly penned by Comelec Commissioner Luie Tito Guia of the Commission’s 2nd Division.

The photos of the supposed hard copies of the decision were posted on Facebook first by the incorrigible DDS News-CDO and were further circulated on the social media platform through their most active trolls like “Jojo Cruz” and “Jose Ma. Guerrero.”

On that same Friday night, local reporters were all abuzz after receiving a forwarded copy of the same digital photos posted by DDS News-CDO earlier from Nicole Managbanag, media liaison for the Padayon Pilipino-Centrist-Centrist Democratic Party’s Jose Gabriel La Viña.

As to how Managbanag got hold of the digital copy that DDS News-CDO posted on its Facebook wall is for you to analyze. I will not deprive you of the delight in making that link.

Just a cursory scan of the document, any journalist worth his salt could see a lot of irregularities, up to a point where it’s almost glaring and apologetically fake.

The discrepancies:

• The order was supposedly promulgated on the International Labor Day — May 1.

• It is not printed on a legal-size bond paper.

• It does not have the dry seal of the Commission.

• Even the font used is not what the Commission uses in the documents.

• The order was not uploaded in the Commission’s official website.

All of that irregularities could be vetted with a cursory check on Google and plain common sense. However, when I saw that the order’s supposed ponente, Guia, I started to doubt that the document could be real.

As a backgrounder, the commissioner and I go a long way back. He was the chairman of an electoral advocacy group of lawyers and paralegals called Legal Network for Truthful Elections or Lente. This group tied up with the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism for a campaign project of Comelec for the 2013 midterm elections.

I thought, what better way to have the document checked than to directly ask the commissioner who supposedly signed the order.

“Officially I am saying that Resolution you showed me is fake. The second division did not issue that resolution,” Guia told me Friday night.

What the local media did, both collectively and individually, showed the trolls and their shadowy masters that when we say no to fake news, we mean it.

Kudos to all the journalists and broadcasters who did not bite the bait for a supposed scoop.

In the words of Arya Stark, the local media said “Not today,” to fake newsmakers.

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TREND MAKER. Mindanao Gold Star Daily was established in 1989 to set ablaze a new meaning & flame to the local newspaper business. Throughout the years it continued its focus and interest in the rural areas & pioneered the growth of countryside journalism.

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