Will Sotto law amendment cover bloggers?

The Sotto law (Republic Act No. 53 (as amended)) protects journalists from being compelled to name their news source. It was named after Cebuano journalist Vicente Sotto, who was jailed for months over an article he printed in his newspaper.

The law protects “The publisher, editor, columnist or duly accredited reporter of any newspaper, magazine or periodical of general circulation.” The law, according to this Sun.Star Cebu article, “is silent about radio or TV journalists.”

Cebu Rep. Raul del Mar is seeking to amend that law to cover broadcast, Internet and wire service journalists. Del Mar’s HB 2960s expanded list enumerates: “publisher, station owner/manager, bureau chief, editor, news editor, writer or reporter, correspondent, opinion columnist or commentator, cartoonist, photographer or any other practitioner involved in the writing, editing or commenting on the news for mass circulation.”

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