Tinig ng Plaridel did not unpublish its video of students ramming against the doors of Quezon Hall after the selection of the next UP Diliman chancellor posted on its Facebook page last Monday.
This morning, the Editorial Board discovered that Facebook’s parent company Meta had taken down the said video. Meta said it was on the grounds of allegedly “coordinating harm and promoting crime” when it was simply part of the publication’s #UPDChancy2023 coverage. Meanwhile, the video remained published on TNP’s Twitter page.
The video has since been restored on Facebook as of press time, upon action with Meta. TNP is still monitoring the conditions of its posted materials pertinent to the coverage.
However, in a Facebook post this morning, a blogger accused the editors of TNP of “destroying evidence” and “obstruction of justice” – conclusions that could not be further from the truth. Since the blogger’s statement, TNP’s social media accounts have been flooded with comments red-tagging the publication and its editors. It is beyond irresponsible for the blogger to have given these remarks without evidence and enabled red-tagging attacks on the publication.
Tinig ng Plaridel has always stood for the right to free speech and the right to access information. In its mandate to serve the public, TNP is bound to the principle of truth and verification in its reportage.
This attack on the publication is another symptom of growing efforts to intimidate student journalists. SINAG, the official student publication of the UP College of Social Sciences and Philosophy, also faced a torrent of red-tagging comments in December 2022. Last March, the editors of UP Manila’s Ang Tagamasid lost access to their Facebook page without explanation.
The editors of TNP call upon the administrations of universities and colleges to combat this wave to suppress speech by providing adequate funding, security, equipment and spaces for their student publications as amplifiers of the underreported, laboratories of ideas and vanguards of truth.