In the midst of the Ondoy rush last year, one blogger made it to the lime light: Ella delos Reyes a.k.a “Ella Ganda” as her blog is named.
(DSWD Sec.) Cabral asked the NBI last year to investigate the identity of the blogger after reading a blog entry entitled “Aanhin pa ang damo kung patay na ang kabayo (What good is help that comes if it is too late),” posted on ‘Blog ni Ella’ on Oct. 21, 2009.
The former social welfare secretary claimed the blog entry contained “malicious imputations against her, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, and its employees.”
“The article alluded that she and the DSWD employees are corrupt, having diverted donated goods for personal gain at the expense of the typhoon victims and downright incompetent,” the NBI said in its referral.
A few things:
– I saw the blog during its height. There’s nothing libelous about it. The blogger stood with nothing to gain — other than the unsolicited fame the blog resulted from. If there was anything Ella was about during that time, she was sincerely bothered by the fact that people were hungry and homeless and without clothes and the government doesn’t seem to care.
– Sec. Cabral has an onion skin. As the saying goes, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen”
– This sends a chilling effect on bloggers. Blogging — and social networks — as we now know, is the future of media. It may not be as formal as the print or even TV, but I will argue that it’s the fastest and even more accurate source of information nowadays. Just take a look, for instance, on this report from PDI. It says, “It also checked with the hosting company of the domain name www.ellaganda.com and found out that the hosting contract with “Ella Rose delos Santos” or “Ellaganda” has been terminated since December 2008″ Duh? If it was “terminated” since Dec. 2008, why has www.ellaganda.com able to post the alleged libelous blog last Oct. 2009? So who has the accurate information now?
As a blogger, I feel for her. Do you think freedom of speech can still be exercised in this country — even in a free platform such as blogging?
Bloggers, unite! Make some noise. Defend your rights.