Roque claims being attacked by ‘organized’ trolls, asks for Senate probe
MANILA, Philippines — Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque is asking the Senate to probe the supposed “organized” attacks of trolls on him as he welcomed the Senate’s move to look into the alleged “state-backed and state-funded spreaders” of false information.
“We welcome po yung investigation na gagawin ng Senado. Alam niyo naman po, independyenteng sangay yan ng gobyerno at hindi namin madidiktahan. So they can investigate all they want,” Roque said in an online press briefing.
(We welcome the investigation to be done by the Senate. You know that they are an independent branch of government which we cannot dictate on. So they can investigate all they want.)
“Paki-imbestiga rin po yung mga bumabanat sa akin na mga trolls. Because according to a study, ako po yung pinakamatinding binabanatan ng mga trolls. Naniniwala po ako na organized din yang mga pagbanat sakin. Pakitingin na rin po iyang mga banat sa presidential spokesperson,” he added. Roque did not cite the study he was pertaining to.
(May you also investigate the attacks of trolls against me. Because according to a study, I am the person most attacked by trolls. I believe that those attacking me are organized. Please look into these attacks against the presidential spokesperson.)
Twelve senators have called for an investigation on the alleged use of public funds to run “troll farms” that they describe as those who create “conflict on sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit by posting messages that are particularly controversial or inflammatory with the sole intent of provoking an emotional response from other users.”
“Filipinos should know why the government spends public funds on troll farm operators disguised as ‘public relations practitioners’ and ‘social media consultants’ who sow fake news rather than on COVID-19 assistance, health care, food security, jobs protection, education, among others,” the senators’ resolution read.
Earlier, Senator Panfilo Lacson bared that an undersecretary supposedly set up at least two troll farms to discredit critics of the administration and potential opponents in 2022.
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