Mong Palatino

blogging about the philippine left and southeast asian politics since 2004


@mongster is a manila-based activist, former philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of asia-pacific affairs.

Pandemic exacerbates digital gap and media censorship in Asia-Pacific

An important component in the global campaign against the COVID-19 pandemic is upholding and promoting access to information. Unfortunately, this is severely undermined across the Asia-Pacific region. How can people get reliable data if they are disconnected from communication networks? What happens to media credibility if authorities mandate the reporting of government perspectives on the health crisis? What if news websites are blocked under the guise of combatting disinformation? How can journalists perform their duty without fear if their colleagues are charged under criminal laws for quoting public officials? These are pressing questions based on real cases and unfolding issues across the Asia-Pacific region.

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Voices under lockdown in Asia-Pacific

The COVID-19 pandemic has enabled many governments in the region to ride roughshod over civil liberties. Repressive measures were enacted in the name of addressing a public health crisis. Vulnerable segments of the population found themselves facing not just a virus outbreak but a weaponized regime imposing control and order supposedly for public safety and the common good.

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