INQUIRER.net’s statement on Senate President Vicente Sotto III’s request
INQUIRER.net US-based columnist Rodel Rodis has posted on his personal Facebook account a copy of the letter by Senate President Vicente Sotto III requesting that two articles he wrote in 2014 and has since been posted on INQUIRER.net be removed from the site.
Rodis also commented that if Inquirer agrees to his request, this would set a dangerous precedent.
INQUIRER.net believes it is within Sen. Sotto’s right to make this request, citing particularly his claims that the articles contain unverified facts and baseless allegations. Also, to be fair with the senator, he has relayed this request to INQUIRER.net much earlier through his staff.
We had received and have been receiving similar requests from people and organizations to have articles written about them and posted on the site be taken down, citing reasons ranging from inaccuracy to being unduly vilified in public and threatened with harm not only to them but also to their family. Some had filed libel suits. We have acted on these requests judiciously and made decisions based on our own investigation and based on our journalistic values and principles.
In relation to Sen. Sotto’s request, INQUIRER.net has not made any decision. This is also the reason why we’ve asked Mr. Rodis to comment on the request. He has replied to us by email which we received today (June 16, 2018). But his act of posting this request on social media is his own decision. INQUIRER.net has nothing to do with it.
Abelardo S. Ulanday
Publisher/Editor in Chief
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