A standard-bearer insulted hundreds of Filipino migrant workers after a local publicist quoted words he did not offer.
Accompanied by his picture, the line “I don’t need OFW votes” went viral on Facebook, offending every unsuspecting online overseas Filipino worker.
Thousands of relatives and friends got as well slighted, hurling every insult at the person in return.
The opinion of gullible netizens as well as the unskeptical people who were not connected to the Internet but got wind of it from online individuals got manipulated.
The objective was achieved. The damage mounted to a massive scale – a classic example of the media’s capacity to manipulate public opinion, and ultimately influence vote.
When the color of money blinds the media’s sense of fairness, it compromises the integrity of the polls. When it starts to fabricate lies to demolish one’s bid in favor of another, it starts to demolish itself.
While we consider acceptable publicity of track record and achievements for electorate’s reference, the media itself becomes manipulated the moment it starts manufacturing falsehoods.
Who else can the public rely for information when the most effective tool for disseminating it misleads them? It may not die, but may live without a reputation.
But one thing is certain, it will reap similar insults when the same gullible people uncover the truth.