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Philippines

Disinformation and digital rights in post-election Philippines: Charting ways forward
Guest Writer

Analysts have called Ferdinand Marcos Jr’s election triumph a victory for online disinformation. Amid continuing attacks on the free press and activists in online spaces, the fight against the erosion of digital rights continues in the Philippines.

Posts About the Philippines

EngageMedia, together with film curator and archivist Prof. Rose Roque, showcases a rare collection of films that capture the experiences, aspirations, and struggles of the Filipino people during the martial law years.
On April 9, EngageMedia hosted an online event on the digital threats to Philippine democracy ahead of the May 2022 polls. Watch the full discussion with Prof Nicole Curato, Dr Jonathan Corpus Ong, and reactors from the academe and civil society.
More than in past elections, online spaces have become a battleground for votes and a hotbed of digital threats. EngageMedia has compiled a list of tips to help Filipino voters increase their digital security and safely exercise their rights online.
Hosted by EngageMedia, the online event on April 9 features Prof Nicole Curato and Dr Jonathan Ong as they share insights from their extensive research on online disinformation, trolls, influencers, and other digital threats to democracy.
In ‘Panulukan’ (Crossroads), Filipino filmmaker Richard Soriano Legaspi explores the concept of truth as mediated by technology, and how digital platforms abet the legitimisation of state violence and corruption.
The Philippines' SIM Card Registration Act has lapsed into law despite widespread opposition from rights groups and privacy advocates calling it a "fatally flawed" measure threatening the privacy and safety of Filipinos.

Current Projects Involving the Philippines

The Internet Monitoring Program (iMAP) is a three-year collaboration among civil society organisations in the Asia-Pacific advocating for freedom of expression on the internet.
EngageMedia's localisation project aims to enhance the effectiveness of digital security initiatives in Southeast Asia by providing and promoting resources tailored to cultural and linguistic contexts. This initiative focuses on five target languages: Burmese, Filipino, Indonesian, Khmer, and Thai.
How can filmmakers and video producers ensure that they can maximise their works’ potential to create impact? To answer this, EngageMedia and In-Docs have partnered together to host the Impact Talks, a series of public meetings to share and discuss experiences and ideas around creating impact through film in the Asia-Pacific.
Despite various digital rights violations in the Asia-Pacific, there are not enough films that document these issues in the region. Through "Tech Tales: Films about digital rights in the Asia-Pacific", EngageMedia will help produce eight to ten films about digital rights in the region.
EngageMedia is the South and Southeast Asia regional partner of the global Internet Freedom Consortium, a three-year initiative by Internews that aims to enhance digital security for civil society and media organisations, engage citizens in internet governance debates, and advance human rights online.
EngageMedia is a consortium partner of the Initiative for Media Freedom in the Philippines, a five-year program led by Internews that aims to support an independent and free press in order to counter disinformation, promote political inclusion, and enhance democratic governance in the country.
Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay
EngageMedia has and continues to be involved in various projects on digital security in the Asia-Pacific. In these initiatives, there is a strong emphasis on the use of and training on free and open-source software.

Previous Projects Involving the Philippines

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies is growing in Southeast Asia. In partnership with researcher Dr Jun-E Tan, EngageMedia has produced research that aims to provide an understanding of AI and its governance from the perspective of civil society in Southeast Asia.
How does artificial intelligence (AI) affect Southeast Asia? By exploring its uses and implications to regional human rights movements, we aim to increase civil society's awareness on the topic and understand how AI can be incorporated into digital rights advocates' lines of work.
Are Journalists Safe in Indonesia? Apakah Profesi Wartawan Aman di Indonesia?
EngageMedia has conducted research for the Citizen Lab Cyber Stewards Network to understand how journalists themselves define the concept of ‘security’, what constitute practices of ‘security’, and what they do to learn about and practice ‘secure’ behaviours.
Coconet 2019 Group
Coconet is a network and platform for digital rights movement-building in the Asia-Pacific. Its online hub is Coconet.social, where partners and members of the Coconet community produce and publish regional content on digital rights awareness, advocacy, and activism.
RightsCon Southeast Asia brought together civil society, engineers, activists, lawyers, companies, and governments on the subject of the internet and human rights in Manila in March 2015.

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