CLAIM: Only one attended Maria Ressa’s book launch in Manila
FACTS: Pro-Duterte vlogger Badong Aratiles in his YouTube segment defending Pastor Quiboloy mentioned during the 12:00 minute mark about the supposed zero attendance of Maria Ressa’s book launch of “How to Stand Up to a Dictator” in Estancia Mall last December 10.
“Ito sabi sa YouTube youtube ‘Blockbuster’ po si Maria Ressa sa kanyang pagtitinda ng kanyang libro. Tanong niyo po kung ilan. Ang haba po ng pila — isa. Isa, isa lang po ang bumili ng libro. Isa lang po nakita nating tao (Ask YouTube that Maria Ressa’a selling of her book was a blockbuster. Ask me how many. The queue was long – one, only one bought the book. I only saw one person.
The claim, of course, is ludicrous. Many did attend the invitation-only launch.
The number of hardbound copies is still limited because of book importation issues, but the sale at least in Amazon and Fullybooked is brisk.
The book in question has sold well locally and internationally, and is even the Guardian’s Book of the Year.
Despite its December launch, it already received favorable reviews from The Guardian, Financial Times, Boston Globe, Kirkus Reviews, National Public Radio, I-news, Publisher’s Weekly, Public Broadcasting System, Irish Times, Wall Street Journal and many others.
Why we fact-checked this: Even if there is only one reader of the book, it is enough to light a revolution. As Victor Hugo, the writer of “Les Miserable” said, “To learn to read is to light a fire; every syllable that is spelled out is a spark.”
Photo by Pedro Melo, Rappler.