I’ve noticed the recent spike in the use of hateful words online. You can blame that on what’s been happening in the country. Yes, there was the Zamboanga siege, the Bohol earthquake, the PDAF scam, and Typhoon Yolanda’s aftermath. On my feed in Facebook, I can always spot strongly worded comments in the news related items. Online, people fashion themselves as experts, even with limited information in their hands. I don’t blame the people for being angry at everything that blows up as something wrong or a scandal in the country. They have every right to be. However, I noticed that even propaganda pieces end up as truth for some people. These just add to the confusion and hate.
The internet could be a number of things to a number of people. From my point of view, I can just look at it as a portal of knowledge and a vessel of emotions. While I would ideally want that people should focus on the knowledge aspect, one cannot ignore the fact that people sometimes get “editorialized” versions of information. People are predisposed to make an opinion on almost anything, even using wrong information as basis. Here in the Philippines, ranked as a leading user of social media and where TV gossip shows rule time slots, having internet freedom is almost like giving everyone a gun to shoot everybody else. People should have to at least digest the information first and not just stop at reading the headlines before they shoot their mouths off online.
In my very humble opinion, if you pass information that could lead to more confusion during times of crisis, do have second thoughts about it.