In his recent late-night address, President Rodrigo R. Duterte threatened tech giant Facebook after it took down fake accounts linked to the country’s police and military.
Because of this, some netizens are speculating the possibility of a shutdown similar to network giant ABS-CBN.
A netizen noted that these threats are alarming because of what happened with ABS-CBN.
Social Media Editor Erik Tenedero also expressed his speculations that if President Duterte could do it to ABS-CBN, he can do the same to Facebook. He also noted that it seems like the Philippines will soon follow China in banning the social media giant.
On the other hand, Human Rights Activist Francisco Baraan IV noted that this is a knee-jerk response of tyrants to organizations that threatens their reign.
After FB suspended military-linked FB accounts, Duterte now threatens to shutdown FB in PH.
Apparently, the knee-jerk response of tyrants is to shutdown orgs that threaten their tyranny (like ABS-CBN).
GO AHEAD. I DARE YOU.
Let's see if your troll army will survive on Twitter.
— Francis Baraan IV (@MrFrankBaraan) September 29, 2020
Activist Renato Reyes Jr. also noted that this is similar to President Duterte’s dictatorial actions against Rappler and ABS-CBN.
Duterte vs Facebook
1. Duterte goes all dictatorial again with threats vs FB, same way he threatened Rappler and ABS-CBN.
2. Duterte practically admits government is behind network of fake news, fake accounts and state-sponsored coordinated inauthentic behavior.
— Renato Reyes, Jr. (@natoreyes) September 29, 2020
Another Netizen expressed his confusion over the president’s actions noting that Facebook was only removing trolls and peddlers of fake news from the network.
One netizen also noted that it seems that the president is abusing his power against Facebook, citing his actions against ABS-CBN, Rappler, Maynilad, Manila Water, and local telcos.
Masyadong lunod sa poder ng kapangyarihan itong si Duterte.
▪️Pagpapasara ng ABS-CBN.
▪️Panggigipit sa Rappler.
▪️Pananakot sa Maynilad at Manila Water.
▪️Pambubully sa local Telco.
Ngayon, pati Facebook gustong ipasara?
Sino kang tao ka!??
— Mark Marcelino (@AngAkinLangNman) September 29, 2020
Another netizen, on the other hand, dared Diehard Duterte Supporters to follow suit and boycott Facebook just like what they did with ABS-CBN.
Nung galit si Duterte sa ABS-CBN, galit din ang mga DDS. Ngayong galit naman sya sa Facebook, dapat magalit din kayong mga DDS. I-delete nyo na mga fb accounts nyo.
— Doomed Child (@Doomedkiddo) September 29, 2020
Earlier this year, President Duterte threatened ABS-CBN in one of his national address. Then, Congress declined the network’s franchise despite ABS-CBN submitting renewal requests since 2014.
Then, on May 5, 2020, the National Telecommunications Commission implemented a cease and desist order shutting ABS-CBN down.
Given his pattern of behavior, Duterte might be banning Facebook next.