Rappler "editor" Marites Vitug's latest shrill piece starring Pia Ranada on the imagined "assault on press freedom" gripping the Philippines


A recent article written by Rappler "editor-at-large" (whatever that means) Marites Vitug for a certain Neiman Reports is but the latest of assault-on-press-freedom fluff pieces being issued by an embattled clique of "activist-journalists" (whatever that means).

In "In the Philippines, Journalists Confront Fake News and a Crackdown on Press Freedom", Vitug again raises that imaginary "climate of fear" supposedly gripping the land following a rather quaint incident involving Pia Ranada, one of Rappler's reporters, and an officer of the Philippines' Presidential Security Group (PSG) that resulted in her being banned from the Malacanang where Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte holds office. According to Vitug;

Ranada’s ban from the presidential palace is just one example of the Filipino government’s intimidation and threats against the media. Despite the obstacles, though, independent Filipino news outlets are continuing to do vital work in an increasingly hostile environment.

But, really, there is no evidence whatsoever that the bigger community of real professional journalists' access to Malacanang is being curtailed. Indeed, video footage of the incident between Ranada and the security officer actually exhibits Ranada's arrogant and disrespectful behaviour towards the officer who, in actual fact, holds authority to act in the interest of securing his jurisdiction.

Suffice to say, when it comes to security in Malacanang, the authority of the PSG would generally supersede all others. What Ranada essentially appeals to is a sense of entitlement that, it seems, resonates strongly amongst the Yellowtards.

Vitug, in this most recent "report" fails at a very basic journalistic principle: balance. She is in this instance, after all, "reporting" about an employee in an organisation where she holds a stake. That right there is a conflict of interest. This makes this report worth no more than a pile of rubbish at best.

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