#NoPlaceForHate: Empowerment of Netiquette or Anti-freedom of speech?

 

(Please note that this post was created to fulfill an academic requirement in Development Communication 80 – Communication and Society.)

 

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The Onslaught of Trolling and Social Media Wars

If you have ever engaged on an online discussion regarding certain national or political issue, then for sure you have seen how dangerous it is to voice out your opinions or question and argue with someone who has already commented. No matter what you say, what side you are on or who you are, there will always be someone who’s ready to bash on your comment and even about who you are. The comments’ aim is not to support or argue with the idea presented but to attack and try to humiliate the one who questioned what they are saying. These “trolls” as what people are now calling them has finally found their match. The online social news network, “Rappler”, has begun an aggressive moderation and clean-up of all the nasty and disrespectful comments that are posted on their social media platforms and on their individual news stories. The campaign, started on August 26, 2016 gathered hundreds of reactions, a mix of rejoice and anger.

The Feedback

The #NoPlaceforHate Campaign flooded the timeline of every social media sites the week it was published. Citizens were separated into three teams: Those who were happy about the destruction of trolling and spamming, those who were angry that their space for expression is getting controlled and those who were indifferent of the issue. Users who were celebrating the empowerment of respect and netiquette voiced-out their concern and thanked Rappler for the “evolution” of communication.

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Taken from : Rappler.com

But then there are also those who not only were offended by Rappler’s campaign but also expressed their dismay towards the ignorance of the Law to freedom of speech. These people, ranted on their social media accounts and even began questioning Rappler’s credibility, even threatening to unfollow the network. Also, major Duterte supporters like Mocha Uson and Ira Panganiban also expressed their dismay over Rappler’s campaign with Ira Panganiban narrating the reasons why these so-called “trolls” are acting the way they do and Mocha Uson with posting a meme that compared the campaign with another social media movement.

 

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Taken from: www.Kami.com.ph – #Noplaceforhate Campaign

Β Is the freedom of speech really being endangered?

The freedom of speech “pertains to protection of the citizens’ right to criticize and air their grievances against the government ” and promotes the expression of their ideas and opinions. The Campaign #NoPlaceForHate in my opinion did not harm nor hinder in anyway the right of anyone to express and state their opinions, it only and will only protect those who shares from online bullying and bashing. The state of cyber-bullying in the Philippines has grown into a whole new level of disappointing, with individuals even making fake accounts in order to harm and commit bashing.

The Campaign’s main goals are to moderate users who do not contribute to the intellectual exchange of opinions and to prevent those who wish to harm from being able to inflict the damage. Their efforts whether it continues or not has only proven that there are still people who wish to make our online identities safe and our voice to be listened to. Bashers are of no help in anyway and their moderation, in my opinion, will contribute so much to making sure that we all practice the right conduct or netiquette whenever we are online.

Some may say that Rappler is only doing this campaign because of the compilation of all the hate and bashing they have received from previous national and political issues that they have reported but Rappler is firm that their aim is to make an example of what an online space for exchange of ideas should be.

In Conclusion

To end, I believe that Rappler/s #NoPlaceForHate is made in good intentions and for the greater good. Good can only tell how horrible and disappointing it is to look at the comments section in any news agency’s social media profiles or articles. People are humiliated, offended and attacked everyday in those forums and no one does anything to defend or report those people. Now, with Rappler’s campaign, things can be different. For now, it may only be applicable to rappler’s page but hopefully the other networks and social media sites also pursues the campaign. There so many evil already in the world, let us not contribute to it. Let us not contribute to hate.

Let us all help build a nation of leaders, well educated and respectful citizens who believes that every perspective can be wrong and no is almighty.

PS: For further information about the netizen’s reactions towards the campaign, please visit Campaign Reactions.

Thanks for dropping by!

20 Replies to “#NoPlaceForHate: Empowerment of Netiquette or Anti-freedom of speech?”

  1. I believe that the #NoPlaceForHate campaign was formed with the purest intentions and I commend Rappler for supporting it.

    The problem with the Philippines’ online world is that there are people who read through articles and listen to people not to understand, but to just reply.
    Unfortunately, those replies are usually just ad hominems thrown at people/government.

    Nice blogpost, Chardy!

  2. I agree that Rappler’s #NoPlaceForHate was made with good intentions and for the greater good and I support the ‘freedom of speech’ because who didn’t want that. Different people has different minds with different thoughts who wants these things to be shared and heard.

    Yes, it is called ‘freedom of speech’ so you can voice out your opinions with no holds barred. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that you can just be vulgar, offensive and disrespectful in voicing them out. We have been given the liberty of saying what we want but we still have to be disciplined, respectful and polite as much as possible in doing so.

  3. I agree with your post. Over a year ago, I have taken to removing people from Facebook as connections if I do not see them as being sensible. This may come off as being arrogant, but it is what it is. I value both sides of any issue, but I can only tolerate messages that are conducive to a healthy discussion.

    Bashing, name calling, those are the ones that have no value and I was glad I did what I did, because even during the election when things were getting out of hand, my newsfeed was mostly positive. I believe I only removed one person or two during the election to today, as everyone else seems to be people with class and intelligence as to engage in senseless speeches or hate.

  4. #NoPlaceForHate should have been started years ago, but it’s good that at least one network is working to begin eliminating improper cyber bullies and the like. It’s frustrating to see people attach one another in comments of any social media platform, and it’s a sickness I believe we’ll be better off without. “Freedom of speech” relies on being free to state your opinion, but once you use that “freedom” to trample another person’s, that’s no longer “freedom of speech” for me. That’s abuse and misuse of “freedom”. Great read.

  5. I also agree that the freedom of speech doesn’t limit someone from expressing one’s opinion. There is a difference in expressing one’s views to attacking someone on a personal level. I commend Rappler and even GMA for their #HeartoverHate campaign for leading the change that we need online. I personally haven’t been a victim of cyberbullying, but I don’t want people to experience it. It’s never right.

  6. I am one of those who were happy about the #NoPlaceForHate campaign. Social media, especially, Facebook has become so toxic and not a venue for respectful discussions anymore. Facebook should be a venue to voice out your opinion without having to be bashed or threatened. These trolls’ wrong doings are just too much. I don’t know what’s really their purpose but I hope these people do get a life.

    Living in the Moment | http://www.maayalegaspi.com

  7. I think comment moderation is just right, it’s already being done in other international Facebook pages. Browse HONY for instance and you can see that most comments add intellectual/emotional value to the discussion and this is because of diligent moderation from the page owner when the page was just starting.

    Reading the comments section in local news pages honestly gives me headache because of all the hate speech, threats and name calling. Sadly, this isn’t exclusive to the comment section of Rappler alone. It seems to be an online trait of Filipino readers especially with regard to political discussions. Nonetheless it’s a good start and hopefully other pages will follow and more people will be educated.

  8. I’m quite happy about this move. Even though this may be a bold move for some yet, this is to curb the irrelevant comments that are becoming a nuisance to a thread that is supposed to be fruitful. Some take advantage of the right and/or privilege without knowing the consequence. It’s disappointing how social media has become both constructive and destructive. I hope with this in mind, schools and other establishments would think of ways to educate people that it’s not for everyone; or just completely shut up if what you’ll say is way out of league to the topic.

  9. Ayos yan para mabawas bawasan ng mga dutertards sa comments. (Please don’t delete :P)

    IMO though, some trolls are fun and even poke at the right nerve. This is a good initiative on Rappler and I pray to God to give their moderators the wisdom it takes to weed out the right comments.

  10. There really should be no place for hate. I, for one, do not like Rappler’s biases against the Catholic Church when the RH Bill was being passed in the congress. But during this time, nagkataon na mas marami ang kampi sa tinitira nila. And this is the age of the trolls. When you attack the government, the fanatics will come and threaten you or bash you even if they no longer make sense. I agree though completely, that everyone should have the proper etiquette when you’re on social media.

    http://thetopknotters.com

  11. I do have a question though- how is rappler controlling the situation? are they just deleting comments or are they blocking the so-called trolls and bashers? Whichever way though, I think that rappler is doing a great first step to trying to change the cyber world for the better. πŸ˜€

  12. I agree with you. No way in any form did the campaign hinder freedom of speech, nor will it do so in the future . I up port the campaign whole heartedly. No to bullying of any kind . Ree Love30

  13. Hi Chardy. Admire your opinions on this. First off, I’m no fan of Rappler. I unfollowed them since the election campaign period, but not because I’m rooting for any candidate. I don’t have strong feelings of support towards any candidate, to be honest. But then I have to say, by Rappler’s headlines, they are actually inviting more “reactions”, for the sake of clicks and also engagement.

    At a certain perspective, this is great on Rappler’s side. They get more clicks and engagement, which is the root of their income. However, it lowers their credibility as a “news website” (that’s highly debatable to me, though).

    I think a better approach would be that Rapplers listen to these hateful comments and find ways to engage those voices better. Although you can categorize it easily as “trolls who don’t add to the intellectual discourse”, their response is in itself a discourse. Use that, utilize that, harness that. In the long-run, it will pay off better than #NoPlaceForHate I think.

  14. I totally agree with the #nohatred philosophy. I was a very introvert and non-social media person. With time I started loving it. Luckily I have had good experiences till now and look forward to more.

  15. I agree. The campaign didn’t harm the freedom of speech. Everyone can still disagree or say what they want. I do think it is a good idea to put focus on what we say online. To motivate people to be nicer!

  16. I’ve never heard of this campaign actually (maybe I’m not on social media enough lol..) but I think this is a great campaign that needs to be brought to light. I don’t understand why “trolls” hide behind their computeres and bash everyone and anyone for having an opinion thats unlinke their own. They need to get off their computers and go get a hobby… Thanks for posting!

  17. Although I agree that hate shouldn’t be encouraged especially on social media where everyone feels entitled to say their opinion, no matter how hurtful, I also think that media should also be more responsible when it comes to delivering news. Rappler, as most of the media outfits nowadays, have gone as far as create hate-inducing titles or reports, just to gain more views. If they truly want to promote the nohate campaign, then they should start within themselves. I do not tolerate hate of any kind and I also do no want to deal with trolls, but the media should be part of the solution, not create problem, which unfortunately is what some of them are doing nowadays by writing misleading reports and creating click-bait or hate-inducing titles.

    1. I agree Marge! Just looking at one side of the problem won’t solve anything! You’re right when you said that social media/news agencies like Rappler and the others should be part of the solution and that they should follow some form of ethics when creating headlines and content. Let’s push for positivity and development, rather than hate on trolls, we should strive not to become one and to raise the bar of discussions when we post! πŸ™‚ Thanks for dropping by!

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