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Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago Calls For Inclusion of Bloggers in Media Protection Bill

Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago has said she wants to include bloggers and online journalists in a bill filed to protect members of the media. Senate Bill 455 seeks to amend Article 248 of the Revised Penal Code, and make the killing of broadcast and print journalists "qualified as murder punishable."

Senator Santiago said on Wednesday, "There is no reason why only members of the broadcast and print media should be included in the proposed law. Due regard must also be given to practitioners of the digital media... Even though they are not traditionally referred to as members of the media, they may actually be exposed to the same dangers encountered by institutional media practitioners."

Senator Santiago dictates that the bill should also include photojournalists, novelists, screenwriters, playwrights, feature filmmakers, documentary makers, television production crew, professional photographers, professional videographers and public relations contractors in its scope.

According to, Senators Jinggoy Estrada and Lito Lapid filed it in July 2010 and was already approved at the committee level.

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