Statement on the online vilification of Davao Today and its columnist Leo XL Fuentes Jr.

Sep. 18, 2019

Davao Today, an independent online news organization established in November 2005, stands on its thrust of providing relevant and people-oriented news.Throughout the years, it has become a reliable source of information and analysis for the Filipino audience here and abroad through its consistent news reporting of the underrepresented and marginalized.

In our practice of journalism, we believe in the values of critical thinking, integrity, and excellence. We define critical thinking as the ability to demystify facts peddled by traditional sources. We also uphold the value of integrity which is realized through our independence.

As a legitimate news organization, the tagging of Davao Today as a “pro-communist news site” by “Lapu-Lapu” Facebook community page on September 17 along with our columnist Leo XL Fuentes is a vicious act. Maliciously red-tagging and vilifying Davao Today endangers the life, security and liberty of its writers and the whole news organization.

Previously, Davao Today’s board member Prof. Arnold Alamon and columnist Margarita Fides Avellanosa Valle suffered the same spate of red tagging.

Davao Today strongly condemns the activities of organized troll armies that spread disinformation and slander on an organization or individual.

Davao Today calls on journalists to stand and unite for press freedom in a period where freedom of expression is at peril.

To quote an American author Walter Lipmann,” A free press is not only a right, and not only a privilege, but an organic necessity in a great society”.(

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