Vloggers May Soon Be Accredited to Cover Malacañang

MANILA, Philippines –Todays’ video may soon be shot in Malacañang as Incoming Press Secretary Trixie Cruz Angeles disclosed that the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) is “pushing for accreditation of vloggers to be invited to some of the briefings,” especially those conducted by President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. himself.

“We are, however, pushing for the accreditation of vloggers to be invited to some of the briefings, especially those conducted by the president-elect. That is one priority we have formulated for the incoming PCOO.”

Incoming press secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles at the Laging Handa program of state-run PTV.

“We’re also looking at things like opening up discourse and looking at issues of disinformation that seem to be a hot-button topic nowadays,” Angeles added.

In 2017, PCOO also pushed for the accreditation of bloggers/vloggers to cover events at the Malacañang Palace and occasions attended by the chief executive under Order (DO) 15. Then, the certification can only be issued to Filipino social media practitioners who are 18 years old and have at least 5,000 followers on any social media platform.

According to Cruz-Angeles, they would also review the existing media coverage policies.

“We’ll have to take a look at the existing policy first and determine, make a decision later on as to how appropriate they are for the current time. Other than that, we’ll have to wait and see, pending a review of all existing policies regarding the coverage in Malacañang.”

However, the (DO) 15 was criticized by some journalists covering Malacañang, citing that it devalued the institution once anyone could just be accredited to cover the presidential palace.

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) also released a statement to express concern that pro-Marcos vloggers might benefit from the policy.

“Democratizing access to government by way of vloggers is commendable in principle but must be viewed in the context that the vloggers who may likely benefit from this access would be the pro-Marcos vloggers, as was the case during the campaign.”

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines

“Wider access is good but must not be at the expense of institutional media, which has been sidelined during the campaign as false information spread rapidly online, many of which have been traced to the same network,” the group added.

The NUJP also stressed that the space for trained, professional journalists providing vetted information “continues to shrink.”

“Will the PCOO, which will essentially vouch for the vloggers and influencers it accredits, also be accountable for the content that they might release? Would vlogger access be dependent on whether the content is favorable to the incoming administration or not?” the group said.”

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