This morning, as we sipped coffee and exchanged the latest trade gossips, we were surprised to know that two plainclothesmen went to Mindanao Times two days ago, demanding to see the reporter who wrote about the New People's Army statement on the killing of Davao businessman Vicente Ferrazini. They wanted the Davao paper to disclose the source of the information. Amy told them that instead of interfering with the affairs of the newsroom, they should go ask the city mayor, because he knew everything about the case!
Ferrazini, whose family owns the Merco food chain and icecream stores in Davao, was shot by unidentified men on A. Pichon St. (old Magallanes St.) on Saturday, February 2. He died two days later. The New Peoples Army owned up the killing, through a statement emailed to the media. Maybe, those plainclothesmen were not aware yet, how fast information can travel in the age of the internet, so, they went to the Mindanao Times office to ask the reporter how she got the information.
Isn't that a bit threatening? As if, there was an absence of law protecting the media against unnecessary disclosure of information? Republic Act 1477, as lawyers patiently explain to members of the press, provides that editors and newspapers are not compelled to disclose sources of news revealed to them in confidence, except in cases affecting national security.
Or, maybe, the government and military establishments thought the newsrooms as mere extension of their offices...? (photo courtesy of davaotoday)