Majority of PH internet users see 'fake news' as serious issue – SWS
MANILA, Philippines –More than 4 out of 10 adult Filipinos use the internet, and a big majority of them see fake news as a serious issue, according to the results of two quarterly surveys released by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) on Monday, June 11.
SWS conducted surveys from December 8-16, 2017, and March 23-27, 2018. Each time, face-to-face interviews were done with 1,200 adults (18 years old and above) nationwide: 300 each in Metro Manila, Balance of Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao (sampling error margins of ±3% for national percentages, ±6% each for Metro Manila, Balance of Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao).
Results of the two surveys, when averaged, showed that 42% of respondents use the internet, and 67% of them thought the fake news problem was a serious concern (40% very serious and 26% somewhat serious, correctly rounded).
The surveys also showed that, on average, 20% were undecided, while 13% deemed fake news as not serious (9% somewhat not serious and 4% not serious at all).
The numbers also indicated that respondents' perceived seriousness of the fake news issue was directly related to the frequency of their use of the internet.
The March 2018 survey showed that, among the 42% adult Filipinos using the internet, 32% use it more than 3 hours daily, 21% use it more than two hours daily, 13% use it for less than an hour a day, while 15% use it a few days per week. The remaining 19% said they seldom use the internet.
Of those who seldom use the internet, 51% said the fake news problem was serious, followed by 64% among those who use it a few days per week and those who use it less than an hour daily. The percentage rose to 69% among those who use it 1 hour to 2 hours daily, and went up to 77% among those who use it 3 hours or more daily.
Fake news in the media
The SWS release also said 60% of respondents saying there was a serious problem of fake news carried by the media.
Respondents were asked in Filipino (with English translation): “In your opinion, how serious is the problem of the spread of fake news in the media, like television, radio, and newspapers?”
The survey found 60% of adult Filipinos said fake news in the media was a serious problem (29% very serious, 31% somewhat serious). Another 27% were undecided, while 13% said it was not serious (7% somewhat not serious, 6% not serious at all).
When it comes to solving the problem of fake news, meanwhile, 61% said the government was serious in solving the problem in the media.
The December 2017 survey also asked respondents, in Filipino (with English translation): “In your opinion, how serious is the administration in solving the problem of fake news in the media?”
The survey found that 61% said the government was serious in solving the fake news problem (32% very serious, 30% somewhat serious), 31% were undecided, and 8% said it was not serious (4% somewhat not serious, 4% not serious at all), for a net score of +53.
Fake news on the internet
Meanwhile, respondents in the March 2018 survey also said there was a serious problem of fake news on the internet.
Metro Manila and Balance Luzon both had at 71% thinking of it as a serious problem, compared to Visayas at 68%, and Mindanao at 52%.
The survey also said 68% in urban areas thought this was a serious problem, versus 64% in rural areas.
Based on social media platforms, the seriousness of the fake news problem in the Internet was seen as highest among Instagram users at 77%, followed by Twitter users at 76%, Viber users at 75%, YouTube users at 68%, and Facebook users at 67%. – Rappler.com