A man from a very wealthy family using social media to spread disinformation in the run-up to an election?
No, this isn’t a flashback to 2016. As John Oliver breaks down in the video above, something similar is currently happening in the Philippines, with Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. running for President on the back of widespread social media disinformation about his parents, Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos, who ran the country under martial law in the 1970s while accumulating billions in wealth for themselves.
“The internet is now similarly awash in Facebook posts and TikTok videos that both glorify and romanticize the Marcos family,” says Oliver, describing posts that explain away the Marcos’ wealth as well as some truly ridiculous fake stories, including one about Ferdinand Marcos giving bread to a young Michael Jordan.
“It has been truly amazing to see the Philippines’ election unfold, because in this election they’re not just voting on their future; they’re voting on their past,” says Oliver. “Specifically, which one do they want to believe?”