A past homily message of a priest talking about internet trolls surfaced on social media anew.
A Twitter user on November 24 reshared a quote card that featured the words of Fr. David “Dave” T. Concepcion when he delivered a homily at the St. Maria Goretti Parish in Paco, Manila on July 22, 2020.
“Oi mga TROLLS, evil daw kayo! TOTOO naman! You’re as EVIL as your employers!” the user said in response to the homily message.
The quote card was initially uploaded on the Facebook page of the Divine Mercy of Christ the King Parish in Mandaue City, Cebu in July 2020.
“Trolls are evil. Why? They lie. They spread lies. And they make money out of lying. And they even destroy lives of people out of lying. That’s why they are evil,” Concepcion said before.
The following year, Concepcion suggested to “block, “ban” the user and “delete” to “starve a troll.”
He also looked back on his own message last May by reposting it on his Facebook page.
“Don’t just starve, but block and delete them,” the priest said in his caption.
The priest’s post has earned 3,300 likes and “love” reactions and 2,400 shares on the social media platform so far.
Some Filipinos also agreed with his post.
“So tragic to say the least, the proliferation of lies and deception.
Have mercy on the Philippines, Lord GOD,” a Facebook user wrote in the comments.
“It is really sad that there are people who succumb to this way of spreading lies, misinformation and disinformation in order to have money, satisfy their own ego or narcissistic preoccupation. What have we become?” another online user said.
“They are blinded by the money they earned, even at the expense of truth,” another Pinoy lamented.
Trolls, in the context of social media, refer to people who intentionally instigate conflict, hostility or arguments in an online community using inflammatory messages to provoke emotional responses.
They usually disrupt online civil discussions by spreading hate and false information, usually to favor a party or an entity.
Nowadays, trolls are more associated with political propaganda.
“In the Philippines, candidates and government officials routinely pay vast cyber-troll armies that create multiple fake social media accounts to smear opponents and prop themselves up,” the Los Angeles Times reported in 2019.
“It’s all part of the online propaganda wars shaking politics in the country,” it added.
A study said that former president Rodrigo Duterte was among those who were found to utilize supposed trolls to promote and defend himself online.
Duterte, in response, said that it only supposedly happened during the campaign for the 2016 national elections.