Cover Story


Jul 8, 2024, 12:42 AM
Miguel Raymundo

Miguel Raymundo


As the 2025 elections near, concerned netizens are raising the alarm on the sudden explosion of social media pages actively involved in spreading misinformation not only in San Pedro City but in other parts of the province. But there’s hope – in the youth who are also active in countering this wave of disinformation on social media.

Lies, lies, lies, and more lies, this is the emerging result from the sudden explosion of of social media pages actively involved in spreading misinformation in Laguna and the whole country.

The last time OpinYon Research counted, about ten new FB pages surfaced in the last ten days in Laguna, on top of the active “marites” type pages that had been spreading political intrigues and character assassinations.

Demolition job in the past was a challenging task. Today it is like a walk in the park as it’s easy to make fake news in social media. All it takes is a dubious account, a ludicrous profile picture, and a morally corrupt operator.

Few months before the 2025 elections, these dirty operators are cooking up lies, all for a fee, and use social media reach. While this is expected in every elections, this time, the gutter is getting deeper and the slime dirtier, and the lying pushed to limits.

“Garapalan na ang nakikita nating pagkakalat ng disinformation sa social media ng mga pages na ito,” said one local political observer.

“Black propaganda against political personalities in the province is not new. But fake news has led to a sort of news wars that sow confusion specially among the elderlies,” he added.

Pages, branding themselves as “Updates”, “Expose” or “Sumbongan” and the likes have suddenly exploded in social media spaces all over the province of Laguna as the political climate begins to heat up in the run-up to the 2025 midterm elections.

What is noticeable among these pages is that they seem to thrive in “exposing” not only alleged anomalies but even personal issues against certain politicos.

“Nakapagtataka lang e puro may pagkiling o laban sa mga incumbent at dating opisyal ng lokal na pamahalaan ang pinopost nila sa social media,” our anonymous political analyst pointed out. “Laging sobrang one-sided ng kanilang kwento, o kung minsan e halatang-halata na puro kasinungalingan ang kanilang mga pino-post sa social media.”

Not only that, some of OpinYon Laguna’s staff noted that many of these “news” pages would often copy off articles from other, more legitimate news sites in an attempt to make it appear legitimate.

“As in kinokopya ang buong article, ni wala man lang binago kahit isang salita – maliban sa byline,” was how the staffer put it.


One reason why many of these “propaganda” social media pages are able to thrive on social media, according to OpinYon Laguna’s staff who are also well-versed on information technology, is that these pages are often “untraceable.”

For instance, a check into the "About" section of the “San Pedro GovernMemes” page, which has been posting political content regarding San Pedro City, only shows a generic barangay address, a mobile phone number, and an e-mail (but then again, e-mails and mobile numbers are required to make a Facebook account.)

Meanwhile, whoever is running the "Pilosopo San Pedro" page -- which has been very active in “bashing” not only the Mercado administration but anybody even remotely connected to him –- has taken great pains to hide his/her identity.

There’s no basic information about this guy, not even contact details. Just this clue: he allegedly graduated from the Philippines’ oldest university and is a “friend” of Barangay San Antonio captain Jun Ynion, who has been very vocal in his attacks against the Mercado administration. (But according to a check by OpinYon Laguna’s staff, that Ynion account appears to be fake.)

“Kung tunay na ang layunin ng mga ‘news’ outlet na ito ay magbigay ng totoo, balance at kumpletong impormasyon sa mga taga-San Pedro, dapat ay lumabas ang mga admin ng mga page ng mga ito at hayagang sabihin ang kanilang pagkatao,” OpinYon Laguna’s resident political analyst said.

“Huwag silang magtago sa ‘anonymity’ ng social media, dahil lalong maghihinala ang mga botante tungkol sa tunay na motibo nila.”

Youth pushback

However, there are also growing signs that some youth voters are actively pushing back on this wave of misinformation and disinformation on social media.

“Kung may mga ‘paid’ pages sa social media na nagpapakalat ng kasinunganlingan, mayroon rin namang mga matatawag natin na ‘organic’ page na pinamamahalaan ng mga kabataan na lumalaban na sa ganitong pagpapakalat ng kasinungalingan,” OpinYon Laguna’s resident political analyst pointed out.

Most of these pages are involved in “fact-checking” posts made by pages which they suspect are active in spreading misinformation, or adding “context” that is so often missing in “one-sided” posts made by these pages.

But where does this impetus among the youth to counter propaganda comes from?

“Take a look doon sa ‘Pasasalamat’ na inorganisa ng grupo ng mga supporters ni dating Vice President Leni Robredo sa San Pedro City noong June 17, at doon mo mauunawaan ang pinanggagalingan ng impetus ng mga kabataan dito sa lalawigan ng Laguna,” the political analyst added.

“Sa totoo lang, they don’t have to organize this event, lalo na’t natalo sila noong 2022 elections. Pero they did it not because binayaran sila o dahil may mapapakinabangan sila sa kampo nina Robredo, pero dahil may pinaniniwalaan silang adbokasiya at handa silang ipagpatuloy ang adbokasiya na iyon kahit anong mangyari. That’s the same impetus na nagbibigay-lakas sa ating mga kabataan, lalo na’t sila na ang susunod na boboto sa 2025 elections.”







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