PCIJ Statement on The Manila Times’ report on ‘Oust-Duterte plot,’ 22 April 2019

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PCIJ Statement on The Manila Times‘s report on “Oust-Duterte plot”, 22 April 2019

The Manila Times’s “association matrix” and story about a supposed “oust-Duterte plot” that include journalists with the PCIJ are wrong on many points.

  1. 1.     PCIJ had absolutely not nor ever received any email from Ms. Ellen Tordesillas on the link to the so-called “narcolist video” of “Bikoy.”  PCIJ has neither posted nor distributed any stories or commentaries on the “narcolist video” of “Bikoy.” The video was posted on YouTube from where the news media and citizens got to watch it. That is where the so-called “cybercrime experts” of the unnamed “highly placed source in the Office of the President” should look instead.
  2. The Manila Times story admits to a crime that may have been committed, and fundamental freedoms that may have been violated. It offers tacit admission that these “experts,” apparently working with the Office of the President, had invaded the privacy of the emails and correspondence of journalists now being singled out.
  3. For the record, the “matrix” had linked at least five persons to the PCIJ who are in fact no longer in PCIJ’s employ. Three of the five are personnel who had resigned from as far back as March 2018 to January 2019. Two others, OtsoDiretso candidate for senator Jose Manuel Diokno and Summit Media publisher Lisa Gokongwei-Cheng, had quit their posts in the PCIJ’s Board of Editors. Diokno resigned before the campaign period started.
  4. PCIJ, a non-stock, not-for-profit independent media organization, is funded in various ways: revenues from sale of publications and video, contributions from PCIJ patrons, interest income from an endowment fund that Ford Foundation gave in 2003, and grants for projects, from both local and foreign sources.

Foreign funding is not equivalent to foreign ownership of for-profit media. Truth be told, government agencies are the biggest recipients of foreign funding from the United States, Japan, China, Australia, and other multilateral and bilateral agencies.

For instance, since 2017, the state-run People’s Television (PTV-4) and the Presidential Communication Operations Office (PCOO) have received from China’s state-run media donations of digital radio and other broadcast equipment; brought to China a number of journalists and columnists, including those from The Manila Times, via a “professional exchange program”; started to re-broadcast China programs in Manila; and sent PCOO personnel to learn the Chinese language.

  1. Mr. Rigoberto Tiglao, a co-founder and the first treasurer of PCIJ, helped raise seed money for PCIJ’s operations initially from the Asia Foundation and the Ford Foundation.  Mr. Tiglao himself wrote about his role in PCIJ’s funding in this article in Harvard’s Nieman Reports: The PCIJ has helped change Philippine journalism… It’s a success story of an NGO, non-governmental organization, committed to a specific cause and funded by both foreign and local development agencies.” 

PCIJ has disclosed that it has received funds from the National Endowment for Democracy for the conduct of training seminar-workshops since 2014, in all such events. These seminars had drawn the participation of hundreds of reporters and editors from national and regional print, TV, radio, and online media agencies, including about a dozen from The Manila Times.

  1. As early as 2005, PCIJ had disclosed on numerous occasions its funding structure. Check out https://pcij.org/patron/

About the PCIJ: Who we are · Writing fellowships · Investigative reports · Be a PCIJ patron · Awards and Citations

“The PCIJ is funded in various ways. Funds come from revenues from the sale of publications and videos as well as contributions from PCIJ Patrons (who donate P3,000 to P10,000 each a year and get PCIJ products in return). The PCIJ also makes money by conducting journalism training in the Philippines and other countries.

“Revenue also comes from the proceeds of an Endowment Fund whose seed money was donated by the Ford Foundation (the rest was contributed by PCIJ revenues). That donation came with few conditions, only that the money be properly managed and used only to fund PCIJ operations.

“The remaining funds for our budget consist of grants for special projects.

“The PCIJ is unique — and not only because of its special focus on investigative reporting. No other media organization in the Philippines is funded in a similar way: a combination of grants, revenues, and contributions from individual supporters.

“Our funding structure allows us to be independent because we are beholden neither to media owners nor to advertisers, nor even to grant-giving organizations (the diversity of our funding base allows us to choose the projects we want to do with donors and to set our own terms with them). We are, however, accountable to our board and ultimately, to our readers.”

  1. Finally, and most importantly: A free, independent, and critical press is a hallmark of democracy. A press beholden to the powers-that-be and shirks from its responsibility to fully inform the people on issues of grave public concern mocks its purpose for being.  – PCIJ, 22 April 2019

 

Pahayag ng PCIJ ukol sa “Oust-Duterte plot” na ulat ng Manila Times, 22 April 2019

ANG “association matrix” at ulat ng Manila Times ukol sa mga journalist, kasama ang mga taga-PCIJ, na di-umano’y sangkot sa “oust-Duterte” plot, ay mali sa maraming dahilan:

  1. Wala ni isa mang email na natanggap ang PCIJ mula kay Ms Ellen Tordesillas ukol sa sinasabing “narcolist video” ni “Bikoy.” Wala rin ni isang report o komentaryo ukol sa “narcolist video” ni “Bikoy” ang isinulat o inilathala ng PCIJ. Ang video ay nasa YouTube kung saan ito’y napanaood ng news media at ng taumbayan. Ito dapat ang silipin ng mga sinasabing “cybercrime experts” at ‘di pinangalanang “highly placed source in the Office of the President.”
  2. Tahasang inamin sa report ng Manila Times na posibleng may paglabag sa batas na naganap. Malinaw na inamin sa report na ang mga ekspertong ito na diumano’y katulong ng Office of the President ang nanghimasok sa privacy ng mga email at correspondence ng mga reporter na nabanggit.
  3. Mali ang pag-uugnay ng “matrix” ng limang tao na wala nang kaugnayan sa PCIJ. Tatlo sa lima ay nag-resign na mula Marso 2018 hanggang Enero 2019. Ang dalawa pa, si OtsoDiretso candidate for senator Atty. Jose Manuel Diokno at si Summit Media publisher Lisa Gokongwei-Cheng, ay hindi na kasapi ng PCIJ Board of Editors. Nag-resign si Diokno bago pa man magsimula ang kampanya.
  4. Ang PCIJ, isang a non-stock, not-for-profit independent media organization, ay nangangalap ng pondo sa iba’t-ibang paraan – kita mula sa pagbenta ng mga publications at video, kontribusyon mula sa PCIJ patrons, interest income mula sa endowment fund na ibinigay ng Ford Foundation nuong 2003, at project grants mula sa mga lokal at dayuhang ahensiya.

Ang foreign funding ay hindi katulad ng foreign ownership ng mga for-profit media. Ang totoo’y mga ahensiya ng gobyerno nakakukuha ng pinamalalaking parte ng foreign funding mula sa Estados Unidos, Japan, China, Australia, at iba pang multilateral and bilateral agencies.

Halimbawa, mula 2017 ang People’s Television (PTV-4) at Presidential Communication Operations Office (PCOO) mismo ay nakatanggap mula sa state-run media agencies ng China ng mga donasyon ng digital radio at ibang broadcast equipment; naghatid sa China mga journalist at columnist, kasama ang ilan mula sa Manila Times, sa ilalim ng isang “professional exchange program”; nag-dub at re-broadcast ng mga TV programs mula China; at ngayo’y pinag-aaral ang mga tauhan ng PCOO ng Chinese language.

5. Si Mr Rigoberto Tiglao, isa sa mga co-founder at unang treasurer ng PCIJ, ay tumulong mangalap ng seed money para sa PCIJ mula sa Asia Foundation at Ford Foundation. Minsan nang nagpahayag si Mr.Tiglao ukol sa PCIJ sa isyu ng Nieman Reports: The PCIJ has helped change Philippine journalism… It’s a success story of an NGO, non-governmental organization, committed to a specific cause and funded by both foreign and local development agencies.”

Paulit-ulit nang ipinahayag ng PCIJ simula 2014 na ang National Endowment for Democracy ay nagbibigay ng pondo para sa mga training seminar-workshops. Daan-daang reporter at editor ng national at regional print, TV, radio, at online media ang nakalahok na sa mga seminar na ito, kabilang ang halos isang dosena mula saManila Times.

  1. Simula 2005 at sa marami pang okasyon, inilahad na ng PCIJ ang mga detalye tungkol sa kanyang funding structure. Basahin sa  https://pcij.org/patron/

About the PCIJ: Who we are · Writing fellowships · Investigative reports · Be a PCIJ patron · Awards and Citations

The PCIJ is funded in various ways. Funds come from revenues from the sale of publications and videos as well as contributions from PCIJ Patrons (who donate P3,000 to P10,000 each a year and get PCIJ products in return). The PCIJ also makes money by conducting journalism training in the Philippines and other countries.

“Revenue also comes from the proceeds of an Endowment Fund whose seed money was donated by the Ford Foundation (the rest was contributed by PCIJ revenues). That donation came with few conditions, only that the money be properly managed and used only to fund PCIJ operations.

“The remaining funds for our budget consists of grants for special projects.

“The PCIJ is unique — and not only because of its special focus on investigative reporting. No other media organization in the Philippines is funded in a similar way: a combination of grants, revenues, and contributions from individual supporters.

“Our funding structure allows us to be independent because we are beholden neither to media owners nor to advertisers nor even to grant-giving organizations (the diversity of our funding base allows us to choose the projects we want to do with donors and to set our own terms with them). We are, however, accountable to our board and ultimately, to our readers.”

  1. Sa huli, at pinakamahalaga sa lahat: Ang malaya, walang takot, at mapanuring press ay sagisag ng demokrasya. Ang press na tiklop-tuhod sa harap ng kapangyarihan, at umiiwas na magbigay ng sapat na impormasyon sa mga mamamayan ukol sa mga mahahalagang usaping bayan, ay tumatalima sa kanyang kabuluhan. — PCIJ, 22 Abril 2019
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