Facebook partnership goes beyond Rappler

 

Dear readers and viewers,

Reality based on facts – that’s what keeps our conversations vibrant and allows us to make informed decisions and hold power to account.

Holding facts sacred is a collective effort and should transcend politics, and that's the foundation of our partnership with Facebook.

This is not about Rappler. This is about an action a long time coming – for the tech giant to put in place mechanisms that would help weed out the unfiltered lies that we've been getting on our social feeds for sometime now. (READ: '#AnimatED: Facebook beyond Zuck' )

This is not just about news groups. This is about making the first needed step in a problematic online environment that we are all trying to navigate and make better. (READ: 'Facebook Launches Third-Party Fact-Checking Program in the Philippines)

As we have seen globally, cheap armies on social media have rolled back democracy and misled people, in many cases leading to violence in emerging democracies and the Global South. 

Facebook’s fact-checking initiatives around the world anchor on a global set of guidelines implemented by the International Fact Checking Network of the Poynter Institute. News groups like Rappler and Vera Files have been vetted against these rigid and structured guidelines and join a global coalition.

It's a responsibility, not a privilege. We accepted it because, along with you, we've seen how lies have ripped us apart as a society, fomenting hate and anger.

This partnership is meant to open the door to other groups and communities that are equally committed to facts.

It is meant to encourage free speech that does not harm and does not invent. Because the reality is, power groups are using "free speech" on Facebook to stifle free speech, as shown in various cases here and in neighboring countries. (READ: 'Fake news and freedom of expression in Southeast Asia' )  

Will it be a perfect process? Certainly not. But since we established Rappler in 2012, we have always believed in the ultimate wisdom of the crowd. The state-sponsored attacks against us have not made us waver in this belief, and we are confident that you will ensure rigor and quality in our fact-checking processes.

When we make mistakes, we disclose and own up to those mistakes, as required by the fact-checkers' code. (READ: 'How we do our fact-check' )

Rappler takes this responsibility seriously, unlike public officials who seem to prefer propaganda.

We cannot – and will not – do it alone.

Our confidence stems from what we know and what you've done in the past: helping and vetting us every step of the way. – Rappler.com