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Awareness, anti-fake news law needed to combat disinformation —PRO bets

During the Harapan face-off, Jeanne Nicole Naval, Jan Krianne Pineda and Jeremiah Pasion were asked to list their specific actions on the issue of fake news.



Candidates for the Public Relations Officer (PRO) post of the Central Student Council urged on Tuesday that awareness campaigns and a law punishing the proliferation of disinformation is necessary to combat the rise of fake news in the country.

During the Harapan face-off, Jeanne Nicole Naval, Jan Krianne Pineda and Jeremiah Pasion were asked to list their specific actions on to address the issue.

Naval said that her platforms in line with social media would be infographics on social issues that would teach students to look at different perspectives.

“My platforms on social media will give infographics and information about certain issues na nangyayari sa lipunan natin, hindi lang siya basta infos about them but [also] yung iba’t ibang sides of the story,” she said.

Meanwhile, Pasion urged that a concrete way to combat fake news is integrating and directly talking to basic sectors affected by social issues in order to understand and accurately contextualize these issues in reports.

“Sa pamamagitan ng pagsama at pagtatanong sa [mga] masang Pilipino ay malalman natin ang tunay na mga nangyayari,” he stated.

Pineda pointed out the need for media literacy and the promotion of fact-checking sources.

“By having media literacy in the university, they will be in the know [as to] how they can promote fact-checking the sources. We should start from the inside [the University] to ensure media literacy,” she said.


Anti-fake news bill, press freedom

During the Tagisan mandatory debates last April 3, Pineda also expressed support for the passage of an “anti-fake news” bill that would penalize the proliferation of disinformation.

In a face-off, Pasion quizzed Pineda on her support for the such bill despite the opposition of various groups on the passage of such law.

Pineda answered that “It does not mean na yung pag-gagawa ng bill na ito ay nasesentro lang sa pag-empower mismo ng estado kasi we also have to recognize that we have legislators who are willing to be one with the people and be one with the masses.”

Senators Grace Poe and Joel Villanueva have respectively filed two separate Senate bills seeking to penalize fake news, but both bills were met with criticism from various legislators, journalists and press freedom advocacy groups.

Bayan Muna Partylist Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate, a former journalist, stated that addressing fake news should not be criminalizing its proliferation but “for mainstream and social media practitioners to be objective in reporting events and for Congress to fast track the passage of the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill for the Filipino people to know what is truly happening in the country.”

Former UP College of Mass Communication Dean Luis Teodoro told that “the danger to free expression of these intentions should be immediately obvious.”

“The danger in the Villanueva and [Sen. Francisco] Pangilinan initiatives is that, with the growing concern over the impact of fake news on citizen opinion, knowledge, and capacity to make informed decisions on public issues, any bill that will seem to address the problem could handily pass Congress despite the constraints it will certainly impose on free expression — and without most citizens’ being aware of it,” Teodoro told in a BusinessWorld column.

Meanwhile,  Advocates for Freedom of Expression Coalition Southeast-Asia said in a letter addressed to Poe that her measure does not define “fake news” and thus “is potentially unconstitutional, if passed, for being inconsistent with Section 4, article III of the 1987 Constitution.”G. Parlade



UST bags 5th School of the Year honor in 2018 Student Quill Awards



Photo grabbed from IABC Philippines' official Facebook page.

For the fifth consecutive year, the University was named School of the Year in the Sixth Philippine Student Quill Awards on Monday, July 9.

UST bagged 36 awards, beating De La Salle-College of St. Benilde, UST Angelicum College, Inc., De La Salle University-Dasmariñas, Bataan Peninsula State University and Colegio de San Juan de Letran-Manila.

Winning entries from the University came from The Varsitarian, UST’s official student paper; TomasinoWeb, the official digital media organization of the University; Tomasian Media Circle and Talents; The Flame, the official publication of UST Faculty of Arts and Letters; and communication arts and journalism students.

School of the Year award is the highest distinction in the Student Quill Awards. It is given to the school with the most Awards of Excellence.

Meanwhile, TomasinoWeb took home its first Student Quill awards, with three Awards of Merit.

TomasinoWeb’s entries titled “Right Click 2017: TomasinoWeb’s Special Coverage of the UST Student Council Elections” and “UAAP Season 80 Campaign” won under the communication skills category; while  “Lakbayan ng Pambansang Minorya National Advocacy Campaign” won in the communication management.

The Philippine Student Quill Awards is the junior division of the Philippine Quill Awards, which recognizes private organizations and corporations in the country for excellence in business communication.

Awarding ceremonies were held at the Mariott Hotel Grand Ballroom in Pasay City.

The event was organized by the Philippine chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators, a network of business communicators around the world advocating for professional growth, learning and communication excellence.

ERRATUM: We have been informed that the previous photo used in the article was actually taken by The Varsitarian. It was not our intention to erroneously credit the owner of the photo. The image has since been replaced.


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UST tops June 2018 architecture boards



The University was named as the lone top performing school in the June 2018 licensure examination for architects, with three Thomasians landing in the top 10.

UST recorded an 84.19-percent passing rate, in which 197 out of 234 Thomasian examinees passed the exam.

This was higher than last year’s 83.26 percent, wherein 184 out of 221 examinees made the cut.

Karl Justin Sayseng Diocales led the new batch of Thomasian architects after placing fourth with a score of 82.90 percent.

Thomasian Jomari Patrick Meñoza Guzman placed seventh with a score of 82.60 percent, while Marie Dominic del Rosario Castillo landed in the ninth spot after scoring 82.20 percent.

Moreover, Paolo Gabriel Torres Martires of Polytechnic University of the Philippines- Sta. Mesa led the new batch of architects with a score of 84.10 percent.

According to the Professional Regulation Commission, 1, 778 out of 3,177 passed the board exam nationwide.


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Applied Physics gets Level I PACUCOA accreditation



Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities Commission on Accreditation (PACUCOA) granted the Bachelor of Science in Applied Physics major in Instrumentation the Level I accreditation status.

Applied Physics is the newest program among the six straight degree programs of the College of Science.

The accreditation, which was received last May, is valid for three years, up until May 2021.

According to PACUCOA’s website, Level I accreditation status allows the program to have “full administrative deregulation and financial deregulation in terms of setting of tuition and other fees and charges.” It also gives the power to change the curriculum without the Commission on Higher Education (CHED)’s approval.

The program is also made priority during awarding of grants and financial assistance from CHED and from the Department of Education (DepEd).

Pacucoa is a private accrediting agency set to give formal recognition to an educational institution through a series of phases which tests if the academic program of the institution maintains excellent standards.


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