A call from Jimmy Bondoc, a musician turned Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. official, threatened to start “a nationwide petition to delete Facebook” after the social networking platform announced its partnership with media companies Rappler and Vera Files for a fact-checking program.
Screenshots of Bondoc’s post on his official Facebook page have been circulated, though his call-to-arms appears to have been deleted since.
I am declaring my support for Jimmy Bondoc’s brilliant idea. Mga Ka-DDS, let’s do this country a favor: sabay-sabay nating layasan ang Facebook. Now na! pic.twitter.com/4EDdRQqsuN
— Professional Heckler?? (@HecklerForever) April 13, 2018
Bondoc has shared a link to an online petition calling Rappler, which has been critical of the Duterte administration, an “unreliable fact-checker.” The petition appears to be addressed to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg.
Criticism of Bondoc’s campaign has mounted since he aired his grievances.
Jimmy Bondoc threatening to rally a petition to shutdown Facebook is the most hilarious thing I’ve ever read. It goes to show that the DDS Propagandists are dependent on FB and can’t stomach the fact that they might be policed online. ???
— The Cebuano Bar Boy (@CebuanoBarBoy) April 13, 2018
to the hardcore DDS like Jimmy Bondoc, i guess their fake news and Leni bashing is more important to them than keeping in touch with their family and friends. lmao.
see ya! wouldnt wanna be ya
— Kowboy Santos (@KowboySantos) April 13, 2018
But some critics of the administration appear to be keen on seeing Bondoc’s vision bear fruit. While Bondoc’s call-to-arms has won signatures for his petition, the opposition appears to have joined in on the call for the mass exodus from Facebook.
— karen claridad (@k_claridad) April 13, 2018
— ? (@unomagnifico) April 13, 2018
The petition has gained swift traction. As of this writing, there are more than 7,000 pledges on the campaign.
— tOm_md® (@MaculaDensa_) April 13, 2018
Facebook’s presence in the Philippines through a rough patch
Bondoc’s wrath is just the least of the storms battering the social media giant.
Filipino authorities have kept watch over Facebook following last month’s Cambridge Analytica crisis.
Earlier this month, the National Privacy Commission met with Facebook executives over data and privacy concerns following news that data from Filipino users were included in the alleged improper sharing that took place between Facebook and data mining agency Cambridge Analytica.
Last month, Simon Milner and Clair Deevy of Facebook’s Asia Pacific office attended a Senate hearing on public disinformation and Facebook. Milner addressed concerns about the proliferation of “fake news” in Filipino Facebook feeds.
“We do recognize we have not done a good enough job. We should not be a service where you have to rely on the fact that you have a relationship with somebody in Facebook to try and get a problem like this fixed. We have to do better and indeed that is absolutely what we are determined to do,” remarked Milner about concerns surrounding the content that can be found on Facebook.
Facebook chief Zuckerburg of course is facing his own battle in the West, after being called on to appear in front of the US legislature in connection with the Cambridge Analytica scandal.