Website The Asian Policy (asianpolicy.press) recently published a misleading report about actress Angel Locsin “leaving” television network ABS-CBN, which is now in the middle of a controversy over its franchise.
Lacking important context in its headline and lead paragraphs, the misleading report bore the title, “JUST IN: Actress Angel Locsin leaves ABS-CBN.” It made the rounds on social media after the Office of the Solicitor General asked the Supreme Court on Feb. 10 to void the franchise of the broadcasting giant for alleged abusive practices.
The site maliciously twists an announcement the actress made in a Feb. 12 Instagram post. What Locsin actually said was that she did not renew her contract with the network because of preparations for her upcoming wedding with producer Neil Arce.
She said this matter-of-factly in the social media post, which was actually a statement of support for ABS-CBN and its workers.
This clarification about her “leaving” ABS-CBN because of wedding preparations was mentioned only in the third paragraph of The Asian Policy’s story.
Comments on the re-shares of the misleading story on Facebook show netizens interpreted the report as Locsin leaving the network because of the franchise issue. A top comment, which received 128 interactions, read: “Yes, coz she knows the boat is sinking.” Many others defended Locsin, pointing out that her non-renewal of contract was because of wedding preparations.
The misleading article lifted a substantial portion of its story from a Feb.13 report by online news site Kami.com.ph and replaced its original headline, “Angel Locsin admits to not renewing her ABS-CBN contract this year.”
A reverse image search reveals that the thumbnail used in The Asian Policy’s misleading story is from a November 2017 Instagram post by Arce, Locsin’s fiance.
Asianpolicy.press’ misleading post may have reached 1.5 million people on Facebook (FB), gaining over 9,800 interactions. The top traffic generators to the misleading story from social media are FB pages Duterte Today, StonefishDu30, and FB group Get Real Philippines Community.
Asianpolicy.press, created in Aug. 2016, was flagged by VERA Files Fact Check earlier this week for publishing another misleading story, falsely claiming in its headline that former Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle left the “sinful church of Manila” to go to the Vatican. (SEE: VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Story reporting Tagle leaving ‘sinful church of Manila’ for Vatican MISLEADING)