Fake news on GMA 7’s “poop” by China vessels traced to dilawans

I’ve said it time and again, and I’ll say it again.

In this day and age, fake news are easy to track down and expose.

That already happened with the dishonesty shown by Simularity, Inc. and GMA 7 in using a photograph of a dredging vessel causing damage to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia way back in October 2014 and make it seem like an actual image of a Chinese vessel spewing human waste into the West Philippine Sea.

Now, the venerated columnist Bobi Tiglao has done it again: he exposed Simularity as a propaganda front of the dilawans to spread lies against China. And Tiglao raises the question about whether or not the U.S. State Department, or the CIA, could have put up the $1 million that the brother of a former Aquino government cabinet member infused into what was moribund company on July 17, 2018. That’s just three years ago.

Simularity washed its hands from any culpability in using that damning photograph from “The Daily Mail”. It blamed GMA 7 for failure to double-check its attribution in fine print that the ship was unknown with its source indicated underneath. Was GMA alone in this apparent act of spreading fake news?

Hell, no.

There was malice in Simularity’s use of that photograph. The intent to raise a furor by showing a picture of a ship with murky water in its wake was palpable. There was nothing in the caption that would warn the reader that the vessel wasn’t Chinese, and that it wasn’t in the act of dumping human waste as an accompanying illustration to the article. And that certainly accomplished its purpose: it raised hell among Senators who fell for the fake news.

It’s sad because GMA 7 merely removed the offending picture without offering an apology. Simularity said it had asked “the irresponsible news organization” to publish a retraction. GMA 7 pretended as if nothing happened. That is cowardice.

That embarassing episode is now aggravated by what Tiglao has unearthed.

In his column appearing in The Manila Times today, Tiglao discovered that Simularity was a mediocre technology company founded in Delaware, U.S.A. in 2011. Its business was providing clients with data on “changes on the earth surface” using images downloaded from a satellite of the European Space Agency.

But as the website of ESA would show, its powerful satellites are used to monitor “gradual changes” in the earth’s surface such as the gradual clearing of rainforests, the annual rise in global sea level, and an increase in the number and intensity of wildfires.

With this in mind, the question begs to be asked: how can Simularity monitor the build-up of human waste in the open sea when any discharge is carried away by strong currents? It’s not as if the “poop” discharge is weighed down by an anchor so that it stays in place for generations to come, such that its accumulation can be detected from space.

Liz Derr is guilty of exagerrating her report when she said there are now two man-made things visible from space — the Great Wall of China and the “poop” concentrations in the Spratlys. “When ships don’t move, the poop piles up,” she said.

That is plain stupidity. Even an elementary school pupil understands that in open sea, nothing remains stationary. Certainly, human waste piling up in that part of the world is impossible. It’s not an earth-surface latrine where the poop stays in the dug-out for a long period of time. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

But there’s more to it.

Tiglao found out that Peter Abaya, brother of former DOTC Secretary Joseph Abaya, invested $1 million in the company on July 17, 2018 through his company, Shatter Tech Venture Holdings.

What was it about Simularity that attracted Abaya’s brother to pour a cool million dollars in that company? And why did Simularity quickly change its packaging to become a technology-company keeping a tight watch over what was happening in the West Philippine Sea? And how did Simularity’s so-called “poop report” draw the attention of Philippine media to warrant an on-line interview with Derr?

If you ask me, Simularity was set-up as a propaganda vehicle for the oligarchs who have set their eyes on the gas and oil underneath the West Philippine Sea. It’s not hard to see the connection.