January 19, 2012
Once again, our campus press freedom is under attack.
The Editor-in-chief of UP Baguio Outcrop, along with the rest of the UP Baguio Outcrop staff has recently been charged with libel by a faculty member of UP Baguio. This comes after a lampoon article was written on the July 2011 issue of Outcrop about someone who is so sensitive to noise. The article did not mention any real name and make any false claim about the person being talked about.
In line with this, we are asking for your support as the campus press freedom of one of our fellow-guilder and member publication is being assaulted. Not a few times that as campus journalists, our lampoon publications have been used against us by those who felt that they were “attacked” by our column entries. They bypass the fact that lampoon writing is a legitimate form by which the campus journalists satirically tackle the pertinent issues concerning the students. More importantly, we see this tactic as yet another manifestation of the larger anti-student scheme which is prevalent in the repressive atmosphere of educational institutions.
On a broader level, it has been a long campaign of the mainstream media to decriminalize libel which is also usually used against them by persons of authority and power whenever they felt “offended” or “disgraced” by certain articles written about them. Just like the repression experienced by campus journalists, libel being a criminal case is usually being used as a threat to the press freedom of mainstream media. This recent case only proves that we are constantly under the threat and intimidation of powers-that-be who seeks to put a limitation on our freedom of expression as members of the press. Given our capability to give an acute analysis and encompassing coverage of the relevant, daily events, and interrogate the status quo, it is inevitable that those who cling to and benefit from the status quo are unsettled as we strive for the expression of truth and the exposure of the flaws of the present scheme of things.
These are the times that manifest the difficult conditions where we, campus journalists, operate. These are conditions rife with deceit, hypocrisy and lack of fairness. These are conditions that once again, call on all of us to keep asserting our rights and continue making our voices be heard in the midst of harassment, inequality and deception.
DEFEND UP BAGUIO OUTCROP!
FIGHT FOR CAMPUS PRESS FREEDOM!
UPHOLD STUDENT’S DEMOCRATIC RIGHTS AND ACADEMIC FREEDOM!