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Saturday, February 3, 2018

Fake News Has Been Around for Ages, Media Leads in the Proliferation


Wazzup Pilipinas!

"But it's true! There are brands that hire even media practitioners to spread negative news about their competitor(s)."

Lasy year when I invited bloggers to attend a food tasting at a certain restaurant, I told them to write honest reviews so the owners could truly improve their food and services. Others would have said to only focus on the positive aspects. But I prefer to hear about their actual experience, including the negative ones, no matter how gruesome it could be.

Unknown to many, fake news has been around for ages. It is only today that it got highly noticeable because almost everyone is now online, and the news are spreading faster than wildfire thanks to the power of social media and the Internet.

Just as how praises about a brand could be exaggerated, all those rants or complaints against a brand could not be entirely true as well because other brands also do hire the services of even media to put out excessive unflattering stories about their competitors, aside from just promoting themselves. These could also be proliferating any kind of news not directly pointing to competitors but would make customers patronize the brands' products or services.

Just as how media seem to encourage everyone to try their luck with gambling in Lotto by always announcing the big jackpot prize of millions of pesos, media could go beyond exaggeration with their news in favor of certain brands.

Need we say sensationalism keeps interests flowing, and thus scare or dare tactics are employed to alarm or provoke followers. It could very well be a form of marketing - An intentional or orchestrated scenario that would make people reach out to their pockets, or smartphones, immediately without even blinking an eye or thinking twice.

We've also seen how media are biased with their sponsors or advertisers giving unfair competition for those brands who can't afford their ads or air time. We know about the necessity of investing on promotions, but only those with enough funding could excel triumphantly just as how extravagant campaigns affect election results.

There are just too many tempting attractions publicized as all breath-taking and adrenaline-pumping awesome yet we all know there could have been an ex-deal arrangement behind every declaration of appreciation.

The really passionate bloggers or influencers would risk losing clients by sharing their actual experience, while trad media have to answer to their editors, producers, or any of their bosses, if ever they speak negatively of their featured personalities or attractions.

Saying online personalities are more credible than traditional media could not entirely be true because the online community has already been infiltrated by others with ulterior motives other than sharing their adventures.

Likewise, those trad media that are tough enough to contradict or speak against erring or faulty brands or personalities, are asked to mellow down, behave, suspended, or get kicked out permanently.

I have nothing against those who demand or require a commensurate enough compensation to answer to their daily needs and expenses. Again, that is all up to the brand if they wish to collaborate or partner under those conditions. So we just want to remind the people at the other side of the fence to be more discerning with their choice because not everyone we see as charming and appealing are entirely honest to you. In short, it will still be up to us to proclaim the final verdict. We are the true  and most credible judges in this life where everything is a competition.

Online has already been diluted with questionable characters meant to ruin the reputation of those who just want to express themselves and shout-out to the Philippines, the universe rather, "Wazzup Pilipinas!!!"

Iconic!


#WazzupPilipinas #PambansangBlogger

How To Cope With Thesis Rush


Wazzup Pilipinas!

Many students give up hope on thesis writing when they have just a few months or few weeks left to stand before the committee with their finished work. Many don’t even know where to start from because it is their first time of writing it. Writing a thesis on a tight deadline is hard. You can make terrible mistakes along the line. But there are ways you can cope if you are short on time. In fact, you may end up creating quality paper at the end of the day. Here is how you can cope with a few weeks left to the deadline.

Know the purpose of your thesis

One reason students find themselves short of time is spending more time writing out of point only to realize when it is late. If you don’t know the question of your thesis, you will have challenges conducting quality research. There are many graduates who don’t even know the question their hypothesis is trying to ask before they start writing. That is why they hardly make significant progress. They spend time writing and re-writing paragraphs, even when they should have completed the task and progress to the next chapter. Ask your supervisor what the thesis is about before you start writing. You need to be sure of this, even if you plan to order dissertation online.


Break it down into stages

Thinking about how to complete the entire thesis at once is suicidal. You may lose interest or not get anything done at the end of the day. If you want to be effective, break your thesis down into smaller stages. Start with something like the collection of ideas, editing, data analysis, and polishing.

Write down as many ideas you can come up with on paper before thinking of editing or proofreading for errors. Now is not the time to criticise your work, or you may end up killing your creativity and wasting more precious time.

Once you have gathered enough information, the next thing would be to edit before submitting to the supervisor for review. Your final polishing will be needed after the committee has given their feedback.

Get professional help

The issue most students face with dissertation writing is how to start and where to start from. It can even be more challenging and confusing when they become short of time. An easy way to handle the thesis rush is to seek professional help. But ensure whoever is working on your project is qualified in that field.

There are myriads of professionals online, and finding the right one will surely pay off. But have at the front of your mind that most of them claim to be experts are short of that. Another thing to look out for is time wasters. Be sure that the professional you are working with can meet your deadline. He or she should always be available to provide update on progress of work.

Make good use of time

There would be times when you won’t feel like writing. But even when this time comes, you need to stay motivated in order to complete the task. You don’t have to spend 20 hours writing or wait for the perfect time to write. It is understandable that you need to spend more time to meet the deadline. But make good use of the few hours or chance you have to work on your thesis, instead of waiting for when you will have all day free to yourself. Avoid distractions and make good use of the time you have for the project.

Don’t start with the difficult chapters

The first part of any thesis is abstract. But it should be the last thing to write. It is the summary of the whole paper. And to write a good quality thesis, you must make sure that everything is complete.

Start with the methods section, which is the simplest. You can also complete it on time. Knowing that you have completed few pages can boost your confidence level.

Conclusion

It is not easy to cope when writing a thesis on a short deadline. Thinking about the time you have left, and the consequence for failing to meet the deadline can cause distraction and more confusion. But you can cope even if you have a short time left. follow the tips above to finish your thesis.

What Everybody Should Know About Action Cameras


Wazzup Pilipinas!

When it comes to traveling, one should take into account some things since even some slight details may be actually important. Many things will make your travel really memorable, and the memories will be pleasant. How to make them bright? The answer is to use an action camera.

Action cameras differ greatly. Compact and easy-to-use, they can be mounted on any surface, make high-resolution videos and photos with an incredibly wide angle of view. Many travel gurus and fans of active life mount the camera on a monopod and show us their adventures, extreme sports, diving, etc. These waterproof cameras are the best to catch the brightest moments of your life.

There are several reasons to take action camera when traveling. They are unlike any other kind of a camera. They're designed to be attached to helmets, surfboards, cars, and other objects. They're small, tough, and simple to operate with a lens that captures the world in high-definition video and a wide-angle fish-eye perspective.

Their small size and the POV footage has made them popular among extreme sports participants, who capture their adventures by attaching cameras to themselves or their equipment. They're also used by TV production companies where using a regular video camera would be impossible.

There are lots of options when it comes to buying an action camera in 2018 starting from wide-known brands like GoPro and Sony as well as less-known companies such as Veho and Olfi.

Image quality is one of the most important advantages of an action camera. GoPro, Veho, and Sony are really good in this area. However, it's always worth checking out frame rates rather than max resolution, because a lot of cameras shoot in 4K resolution, but some cheaper models use a frame rate of 15 fps, which makes the video look jumpy. If you're shooting in 4K, you want at least 30 fps or shoot in 1080p HD at 60 fps.

Some cameras also come with bundled accessories, even with an accessory for iPhone. If you want to take your action camera into the sea diving, you'll need a waterproof camera. If you want to make a video on a car, you'll need a certain mount. Some cameras come with a load of mounts and cases free with the camera, such as the Veho and Olfi, whereas others are less generous.


Tips to Select an Action Camera

First of all, look at three main aspects when choosing a certain type of the camera. You should choose a quality and small one. Consider your travel goals and financial ranges.

Quality comes first of all. You will definitely need the information about the photo quality, which is utterly significant. If you really want to capture awesome and clearly visible photos, you will need a camera with the proper quality. You should keep in memory one really essential point – don’t pay attention to megapixels. Some cameras may have different megapixels, but the quality will be the same. So why pay more for the same effects?

The second important aspect is portability. As you are going on a trip, you will need a small camera. Otherwise, your trip will be inconvenient and not that pleasant due to a heavy and big camera.

Price also matters. Undoubtedly, traveling requires some costs and the expenses are pretty big. Therefore, you should consider all aspects of your travel.

Finally, nothing makes a great trip like a good camera that will make your travel really memorable. Nowadays, you have a lot of different action cameras to select in the market. They are different and contain various features. Take a look and compare the most appropriate for your needs.

About the Author: Parker Slovinsky is a Scrum Master by profession and an enthusiastic freelance writer for MacBlogger.org. He adores researching cutting-edge trends, writing about the newest devices and app updates.

Images https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-action-camera-with-stand-746351/

https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-eyeglasses-on-top-of-the-gray-and-black-action-camera-in-the-white-surface-163033/

https://www.pexels.com/photo/man-standing-on-snowy-terrain-728842/

Influencers Don’t Really Influence Anything or Anyone?


Wazzup Pilipinas!

"if someone is offered free products or services, it is highly unlikely that they will then write badly or not recommend said products or services."

We somewhat agree, but not true for everyone.

We've actually written quite a few stories with negative reviews about some "brands" too because we want them to improve. But sadly, most brands prefer only those "influencers" with positive thoughts about them.

This is similar to how #FakeNews flourishes because many brands work only with those who would ignore faults or connive with them to highlight only their positive attributes. They would avoid those that are too critical and honest with their reviews, and work only with those that are submissive to their intentions.

Thus we see so many praises coming from media outfits especially on TV as if all the brands they feature are perfect.

We believe that eventhough most brands would pamper us with so many perks and privileges in the form of free or complimentary gifts or tokens, we should not be afraid to point out what we don't like about them. In short, we should tell the truth even if it hurts them.

We should rather risk losing clients, or so called friends, than gain a reputation of being a dishonest reviewer and a conniving prick to our followers.

However, be wary of a counter-attack from the brand through their gang of "misfit influencers" who are ready to do the the brand's bidding.

I was shocked the first time I encountered a brand that employs influencers to purposely spread negative news about their competitors. This is what we also know now as #FakeNews because anything that was budgeted to be highly noticeable, trending or viral could be considered as fake news because their manner of standing out was not natural.

These "call center" acts intended to give a brand an unfair advantage over everyone else is legally known as among the popular marketing tactics. So whoever has the money or biggest control over influencers (trad or new media) would seem to be the most popular brand.

All those huge billboards, print or online ads, TV or radio commercials, celebrity endorsers, etc., should not equate to the effectiveness of a brand...However, it brainwashes people to unconsciously choose or patronize the brand, and the ones with less marketing budget eventually goes bankrupt.

So it is false to say online influencers do not really influence anybody. They are all part of the grand scheme of marketing. Only disgruntled trad media who are losing their share of the clients, or advertisers, would dare say similar statements.

We must accept the reality that online media is now the most preferred and highly working form of information dissemination and most effective marketing strategy. Thus online influencers are now the kings and queens of the world! But unlike the Titanic, they won't sink when they hit an iceberg. They would just evolve with what's trending, just as how trad media has started to embrace online as part of their offerings.

Who knows when exactly everything would finally be all online? But what's sure is that online will be on the top.

This is why there are so much talk about #FakeNews because it is undoubtedly working regardless of how much the affected would try to expose it.

The gullible will easily eat up every fake news out there because almost everything could also be considered fake no matter how legit they may seem.

#WazzupPilipinas #PambansangBlogger

FDCP Announces List of Film Ambassadors


Wazzup Pilipinas!

Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) will celebrate the triumphs of the Filipino filmmakers by hosting the FDCP Film Ambassadors’ Night on February 9, 2018 at Sampaguita Gardens, Quezon City.

This is to give recognition to the Filipino filmmakers who brought honor to the country by winning in various international film festivals last 2017.

Aside from the citations, FDCP will also name the A-Lister winners from the top international film festivals, as well as the Camera Obscura awardees, the highest Artistic Excellence Award given by the Agency for outstanding members of the film industry. Previous recipients of the Award include Directors Brillante Mendoza and Lav Diaz, and actors Jaclyn Jose, Allen Dizon, and Teri Malvar.

This event will also serve as a venue for fellowship and an opportunity for the filmmakers and industry movers to meet again and build a creative ground for future projects and collaboration. 

The Film Ambassadors’ Night will be hosted by Monster Radio RX 93.1 DJ and film enthusiast, Chico Garcia.

The following are the names of the Film Ambassadors who will be recognized that night:
FILM DOCUMENTARY
              1.       SUNDAY BEAUTY QUEEN directed by Baby Ruth Villarama
2.       TWO WAY JESUS, directed by Jet Leyco

TV DOCUMENTARY
1.       WARMER, documentary by Atom Araullo
2.       FRONT ROW: BATA SA BINTANA, documentary produced by JC Rubio of GMA Network, Inc. 
3.       REEL TIME: MALING AKALA, documentary produced by Jayson Bernard Santos of GMA Network, Inc. 
4.       REPORTER’S NOTEBOOK: PASAN-PASANG PANGARAP, documentary produced by Ian Simbulan of GMA Network, Inc.

FILM SHORTS
1.       IMAGO, directed by Raymund Ribay Gutierrez
2.       FATIMA MARIE TORRES AND THE INVASION OF SPACE SHUTTLE PINAS 25, written, edited and directed by Carlo Francisco Manatad
3.       JODILERKS DELA CRUZ, EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH, directed by Carlo Francisco Manatad
4.       DO I HAVE BOOBS NOW? directed by Joella Cabalu and Milena Salazar,
5.       CONTESTANT #4, directed by Jared Joven and Kaj Palanca
6.       DILIMAN, written and directed by TJ Collanto
7.       SUPOT,  Directed by Phil Giordano
8.       MARIA, directed by JP Habac,

DIRECTORS
1.       LAV DIAZ 
2.       LOUIE IGNACIO  
3.       MIKHAIL RED
4.       RAYMUND RIBAY GUTIERREZ
5.       SHERON DAYOC 
6.       SARI DALENA and KIRI DALENA
7.       FRITZ SILORIO 
8.       BRILLANTE MENDOZA

FULL LENGTH
1.       ANG ARAW SA LIKOD MO  directed by Dominic Carlo P. Nuesa
2.       AREA directed by Louie Ignacio
3.       LAUT directed by Louie Ignacio
4.       SINGING IN GRAVEYARDS directed by Bradley Liew
5.       BABOY HALAS directed by Bagane Fiola
6.       IGNACIO DE LOYOLA directed by Paolo Dy
7.       Tale of the Lost Boys directed by Joselito Altarejos
8.       Women of the Weeping River directed by Sheron R. Dayoc
9.       Patay Na Si Hesus directed by Victor Kaiba Villanueva
10.   2 Cool 2 Be 4gotten directed by Petersen Vargas
11.   1st Sem written and directed by Allan Michael Ibañez and Dexter Paglinawan Hemedez,
12.   Ang Babaeng Humayo (The Woman Who Left) directed by Lav Diaz
13.   Birdshot directed by Mikhail Red
14.   Dagsin (Gravity) directed by Atom Magadia
15.   IMBISIBOL directed by Lawrence Fajardo
16.   PAGLIPAY directed by Zig Dulay
17.   HURAMENTADO (Oath to Die), directed by Noriel Jarito
18.   PITONG KABANG PALAY, written and directed by Maricel Cabrera-Cariaga,
19.   PAMILYA ORDINARYO, written and directed by Eduardo Roy Jr.,
20.   PIPO, written and directed by Richard Legaspi
21.   BAKA BUKAS, written and directed by Samantha Lee
22.   ACROSS THE CRESCENT MOON, written and directed by Baby Nebrida
23.   SIKRETO SA DILIM, directed by Mike Magat and produced by Ramon Roxas, 

ACTORS – FILM
1.       GABBY CONCEPCION (TV), “Ika-6 Na Utos”
2.       MARY JOY APOSTOL, “Birdshot”
3.       LOTLOT DE LEON, 1st Sem”
4.       ANGEL LOCSIN, “Everything About Her”
5.       AI AI DELAS ALAS, “Area”
6.       ANA CAPRI, “Laut”
7.       HASMIN KILLIP, Pamilya Ordinaryo”
8.       RONWALDO MARTIN, Pamilya Ordinaryo” 
9.       IZA CALZADO, Bliss”
10.   CHARO SANTOS-CONCIO, “Ang Babaeng Humayo (The Woman Who Left)”
11.   ANNA LUNA, “Maestra
12.   LAILA ULAO, “Women of the Weeping River”
13.   ARNOLD REYES, “Birdshot”
14.   TOMMY ABUEL, “Dagsin” 
15.   RICKY DAVAO“Dayang Asu”
16.  MATTEO GUIDICELLI, DINA BONNEVIE, SANDY ANDOLONG AND JOEM BASCON, Across The Crescent Moon”
17.   CARLOS MORALES, “Rolyo”
18.   LEON MIGUEL, “Galit Na Aso”
19.   CHRISTOPHER DE LEON

Jetstar Launches First Direct Service to Osaka from Clark


Wazzup Pilipinas!

From 27 March 2018, Jetstar Asia will operate three weekly services between Clark in Pampanga and Osaka located in the Kansai region.

Hot on the heels of the recently launched services between Clark and Singapore, Jetstar Asia today announces a new direct service from Clark International Airport to Kansai International Airport in Japan.

From 27 March 2018, Jetstar Asia will operate three weekly services between Clark in Pampanga province and Osaka located in the Kansai region.

Jetstar Asia CEO Mr Bara Pasupathi said that this direct service is an exciting development and the first connection from Northern Luzon to Japan. We are delighted to bring this service to all our customers in this region.

Apart from the greater convenience for our travellers, this service will increase Jetstar’s capacity up to three services a week to Kansai International Airport and Clark will now be the latest gateway in the region for both Singapore and Filipino travellers to fly to Osaka.

From Singapore, Jetstar Asia currently operates up to 12 services through Taipei to Osaka and up to 5 services through Manila to Osaka.

“Clark International Airport will be the second gateway in the region for Singapore and Japanese travelers to fly to the Philippines,” said Mr Pasupathi.

Collective from Taipei, Manila and now Clark, Jetstar Asia and Jetstar Japan will now operate up to 23 services to Osaka.

President and CEO of Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) Mr Alexander Cauguiran said: “This is another good news this new year! Our business travellers or family tourists from
Northern and Central Luzon, and those who wish to visit our popular local destinations may now fly Jetstar Asia to and from Japan via Clark and at the same time enjoy low fares."

"Jetstar Asia is one of our dependable partners in the development of Clark airport. The newest Clark-Osaka route is indeed a fresh development as it will be a welcome addition to the growing number of passengers and to Clark's 166 international weekly flights."

To celebrate the new flights, Jetstar Asia will introduce a special 24-hour sale for its flights from Clark to Osaka from today at 9am to 8.59am. Fares are available for purchase from PHP1,598 at Jetstar.com.

From 27 January at 9am to 30 January at 9am, sale fares will be available for purchase from PHP2,198 at Jetstar.com

One-way Economy Starter Fares+ from the Philippines starts from PHP4,698.

The new service will be operated by Jetstar Asia’s 180-seat Airbus A320.

From Manila, customers can also connect up to 17 international services on sister airline, Jetstar Japan to Narita, Osaka and Nagoya in Japan.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Online Influencers Should Never Be Under-Estimated


Wazzup Pilipinas!

The power and reach of online influencers should never be under-estimated.

Some traditional media are confused with how "online influencers" (including bloggers) actually work.

Like a damsel in distress, they are still locked up in their towers waiting to be rescued by their princes, when they could have used their long hair to escape through the window, and explore the real world outside.

They keep forgetting that online influencers and trad media are meant to be entirely different. The two should be several worlds apart. But since there are now trad media that have already become online influencers, vice versa, or both, some trad media could not accept the trend, sees only chaos, and starts degrading online influencers to make themselves feel they are still the better choice.

Influencers don't usually receive a fixed monthly income like trad media connected as regular employees with trad media outfits (print, TV or radio, or even online publications). Thus, asking for ex-deals or payment for the service of an influencer is understandable.  Similarly to how mainstream media have ad or commercial spots available for a certain (expensive) amount, influencers (aside from their online banner ads), mostly depend on blog or vlog features, write-ups, shout-outs, etc., in social media as their form of featuring brands. They are like celebrities endorsing products or services, of which we all know get paid (high) to endorse as well.

When media outfits allow brands to advertise on their spots, does it also mean they endorse these brands? Nope! But they would also highly put out a good word about the brand to keep them as advertisers. To keep the money coming in, I bet they are willing to go easy because if their media outfits lose their advertisers, there won't be enough budget for them to buy their own expensive gadgets or "review" units.

When online influencers write, blog or vlog, favorably about brands who gave them complimentary or free products or services, does it always follow that these influencers were biased to the brands?

Similarly, when online influencers purchase products or services with their own money, does it always follow that they could easily put out negative reviews about the brands?

Therefore, it does not matter if online influencers got something for free or for a price. Because when they write positively, or negatively, and their readers eventually disagree after personally trying the brands out themselves, they may lose credibility.

Data Privacy Awareness and Compliance Workshop


Wazzup Pilipinas!

The three-day workshop is intended to give attendees introductory knowledge about the need to protect and secure personal and sensitive data or information gathered, processed, maintained, accessed and disposed of by an organization, may it be from the government or the private sector, as mandated by Republic Act 10173 otherwise known as the Data Privacy Act of 2012, which requires all to “protect the fundamental human right of privacy of communication while ensuring free flow of information to promote innovation and growth, and to ensure that personal information in information and communication systems in the government and in the private sector are secured and protected.”

“The head of each government agency, or instrumentality, is responsible for complying with the security requirements mentioned in the law, which includes all sensitive personal information maintained by his or her agency are secured, as far as practicable, with the use of the most appropriate standards recognized by the information and communication technology industry and as recommended by the National Privacy Commission.”

From the workshop, we have identified the preliminary tasks that we need to accomplish:

1. Appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO). Notarized and registered to the National Privacy Commission (NPC)

The DPO will oversee compliance of the organization to the Data Privacy Act (DPA). He or she must see to it that there is transparency, legitimate purpose, and proportionality in the acquisition, storing, safekeeping, sharing or destruction of data or information.

The head of an organization is by default the DPO, but he or she could also assign the responsibility to someone who must be among the decision makers since it involves the creation of policies designed to secure the Programs, Projects, Processes, Measures, Systems, Technologies (PPPMST) of the organization. The DPO could form a team of Compliance Officers for Privacy (COP) to help him with this endeavour.  They will supervise the Personal Information Controllers (PIC) and Personal information Processors (PIP) involved in the handling of data or information. The PIC must implement the organizational, technical and physical measures intended for the protection of personal information against any unlawful or accidental processing, destruction, alteration or disclosure.


2. Conduct a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA)

Evaluate and manage the impact of our PPPMST on data privacy to identify and minimize the privacy risks. The PIA would ensure that potential problems could be identified at an early stage to make them simpler and less costly.


3. Register all the data processing programs, projects, processes, measures, systems, technologies (PPPMST) of the organization to NPC

The speaker advises that compliance to the DPA is not a one-shot initiative but a process so we could register our PPPMST gradually. It would also show to NTC that we are actively engaged in conceptualizing our DPA procedures.


4. Formulate and implement the organization’s Privacy Management Program (PMP)

Draft the organization’s data privacy rules, privacy manual and complaints mechanism. These include providing adequate and proper notifications on how data is acquired (like putting up visible signage of CCTV presence), practicing cyber hygiene (like creating strong passwords, locking devices, installing anti-virus, etc), securing physical locations of records (like keeping filing cabinets containing records locked and accessible only to the authorized persons), etc.,

A hard copy compliance manual and 1 year subscription to full DPMS which includes response management module is required.


5. Designate members of the Breach Response Team (BRT)

The BRT could draft the Breach Management Procedures to be followed when a data breach occurs.  They will take action and investigate if ever a possible breach is suspected or detected. A breach has occurred if the confidentiality, integrity or availability of data is compromised.  A corresponding incident or breach report should be submitted to the NPC within 72 hours.


DATES TO REMEMBER:

Deadline for Registration of DPO to NPC: March 8, 2018

Deadline for submission of Annual Incident Report to NPC: March 31, 2018

DOE Saves Billions for Consumers with Tighter Watch on TRAIN Oil Excise Taxes


Wazzup Pilipinas!

The Department of Energy (DOE) saved consumers billions of pesos with its efforts to ensure that the imposition of the new excise tax rates on petroleum products under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law in the industry would be fairly and responsibly implemented by all the participants.

The DOE estimates that its actions saved consumers around P2.64 billion for liquid petroleum fuels, and P58.4 million from liquid petroleum gas (LPG).

Long before the onset of the TRAIN law's implementation, the DOE, through its Oil Industry Management Bureau, acted to safeguard consumers' welfare. These included meeting the industry stakeholders for guidelines, providing advisories to the public, conducting random inspections, data gathering and reviewing the inventory, examining the paper trail, as well as issuing show-cause orders to retail outlets that raised prices before January 15, the projected average period for exhaustion of old inventory.

“We implemented a lot of initiatives for the smooth implementation of TRAIN Law, because we did not want consumers to be compromised. The goal is to protect everyone, especially the consumers,” Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi said.

The DOE directed oil companies to: 1) submit duly notarized inventory report as of 31 December 2017, on per depot and per product basis for effective monitoring; 2) impose the excise tax under TRAIN only after the 31 December 2017 stocks of finished products are fully exhausted; 3) submit the daily summary of withdrawal starting 1 January 2018 until the depletion of the declared inventory as of 31 December 2017, supported by the Official Registry Book (ORB); and 4) advise their retailers to post in a conspicuous area, for transparency, notice of new excise tax implementation under the TRAIN in a signage measuring 1 meter by 1 meter in size.

The DOE responded to initial reports of early implementation of the TRAIN Law by some liquid fuel retail outlets (gas stations). Thus, a number of outlets were issued show-cause orders directing them to explain in writing why they had already imposed the new excise tax rates.

To validate whether the implementation of the TRAIN Law was proper, the DOE closely examined the supply chain, starting with the scrutiny of the dates of the source depot run-out vis-à-vis the implementation dates of price increases due to TRAIN; the latter being validated from the delivery invoices submitted. The delivery dates of the excised products were then compared to the implementation dates of the price increase in the outlet or gas station involved.

Despite the big number of retail outlets nationwide for validation, the requirements of the DOE Secretary were complied with, along with the order of the Senate, through Committee on Energy Chair Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian, to reconcile and validate all the submissions. Based on these actions, the DOE has taken all the necessary steps to ensure that the TRAIN Law was properly implemented by the industry.

To help mitigate the impact of the imposition of the new excise tax rates on the commuting public, the DOE also held talks with several oil companies to provide, renew, and/or to expand their discount mechanisms to public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers.

In the following weeks, the DOE will be executing Memorandums of Agreement with several oil companies to formalize such Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs to alleviate the plight of the PUV drivers.

Based on the three factors — (1) the mitigating mechanisms of the TRAIN Law; (2) the CSR programs to be extended by the oil companies; and (3) based on the correlation of historical data of petroleum prices and fare rates between 2014 and 2016 (where the increase in oil prices did not have a significant impact on the prices of rice and transport fares), the DOE believes that there would be a minimal impact on the public transportation sector.

Nevertheless, the DOE reiterated its commitment to ensure protection of the Filipino consumers against any disadvantageous trading of energy.

The Ultimate Guide to Taking Care of Your Mattress for Increasing Its Longevity


Wazzup Pilipinas!

Mattresses require a lot of care and maintenance to ensure their longevity. A good mattress will serve you longer and continue to give you health benefits if you look after it properly. However, if you fail to look after your bed then, you risk ruining your sleeping experience. In this article, you will learn about some of the basic but essential guidelines required to look after mattresses.

1. Get a mattress cover to help you protect your mattress from dust
Dust can ruin anything, much more a bed. No matter how expensive your mattress is, dust will still destroy it. Thus you need to protect your mattress from dust at all costs. You can choose to get either a mattress topper or a mattress cover, and it will protect your bed from dust and allergens, wear and tears. It will also give you more warmth. A good mattress cover must feel comfortable when you lay on it. It must be made with a material that is soft, durable and warm.

2. Do not jump on your mattress
Mattresses are not trampolines. No matter how soft or bouncy your mattress maybe, ensures that nobody jumps on them. Mattresses will start sagging after being used for some time, and it is only natural. Hover, the process is accentuated if you abuse it. Jumping on your mattress can not only make it sag but also break its frame.

3. Clean your mattress with upholstery cleaner
Keep a bottle of upholstery cleaner ready in your home.  It will help in removing stain marks and spots on your bed. You can also clean your other furniture with it like your couch or your chairs. Set aside a day for cleaning the mattress. Some stain marks might be difficult to remove but it is a rigorous process, and you must clean it patiently. Soon the marks will disappear.

4. Don’t have food on your mattress
Avoid having any food or drinks on your bed because this will increase your chances of soiling your mattress. Crumbs from your food that fall on your mattress are hidden inside the folds of your mattress' fabric. It can result in breeding ants or other insects like bed bugs. You can also accidentally spill liquids on your bedding which will make it damp. Damp mattresses produce musty odors which can again attract insects.
You can check out new mattresses if you like a soft bed, and if your old mattress is not giving you the necessary comfort.


Conclusion

Mattresses require proper maintenance to sustain their usability. You must look after it properly. You should clean it at least once every two months. Avoid bringing food or any liquid on your mattress. Do not abuse your bed, avoid jumping or bouncing on them. These little steps can increase the lifetime of your mattress easily. Also, it will prevent the mattress from sagging. Hopefully, this article will help you to clean and look after your mattress.


Author bio:

Mandy Bular is a freelance content writer. She has written many good and informative articles on different categories such as technology, health, fashion, education, career, travel etc. She is a featured author at various authoritative blogs in the health and fitness industry and currently associated as a blogger for https://sleepsherpa.com

REP Stages the Story of the Woman Who Mapped the Stars


Wazzup Pilipinas!

Repertory Philippines, or REP, takes a figure out of the shadows of history and brings her story to the spotlight in the science bio-drama Silent Sky. Directed by REP Artistic Director Joy Virata, Silent Sky runs from March 2 to 25 at the OnStage Theater in Greenbelt 1, Makati City. 

Playwright Lauren Gunderson’s Silent Sky is based on the true story of early 20th century astronomer Henrietta Swan Leavitt who, together with a group of female scientists, was working as a “computer” (data entry clerk) at Harvard Observatory College. Despite women being forbidden from using the observatory’s telescope, this brilliant but unsung pioneer made astonishing discoveries as she mapped the distance between the stars, the earth, and other galaxies.

As a result, Leavitt paved the way for more known astronomers like Edwin Hubble (the man said to have discovered the cosmos) to succeed in their own research.

Silent Sky is a story that harmonizes science, history, family, love, and the passion of a young woman who forged her own path through a society bent on keeping a woman in her place.


REP’s Silent Sky features some of the most captivating performers ready to bring to light the overlooked achievements of women in history. Cathy Azanza-Dy plays the lead role of Henrietta Leavitt, while joining the cast are Caisa Borromeo, Naths Everette, Shiela Francisco, and Topper Fabregas.


Don’t miss the inspiring story of REP’s Silent Sky running from March 2 to 25.

For inquiries, you may call REP at 843.3570, and Ticketworld at 891.999 or log on to www.ticketworld.com.ph.

For updates and show schedules, log on to www.repertoryphilippines.ph, like and follow repertoryphilippines on Facebook and Instagram, and follow @repphils on Twitter.

Single on Valentine’s Day? GO Celebrate with Your Single Friends


Wazzup Pilipinas!

Yes, Valentine’s Day is all about hearts, roses, and romantic dates. But if you’re single on Feb. 14, don’t fret, as you too can join in on the festivities. The day is all about love after all, so why not celebrate it with your fellow single friends? Think of going out together as a great “thank you” gift to friends who will always have your back.

Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to visit the Scout Area in Quezon City. The whole place offers an interesting choice of dining places, plus more. Go Hotels, the hotel for every Juan, offers some recommendations on where you and your barkada can celebrate V-Day 2018.

Go on a staycation with the barkada
Go Hotels recommends spending the night at their branch located in Timog Ave. It has the same world-class facilities the brand is known for: clean and clutter-free rooms, comfy ambiance, comfortable beds, hot & cold showers, and free WIFI. Your barkada can book up to five rooms, and the earlier you reserve them, the more chances of availing the lowest possible rate. The hotel also offers a spa service provided by Venus Touch Spa, a perfect way to treat your body after a whole evening of partying.

"Our Timog Ave. branch is located right in the middle of Scout area, making it perfect for those who wish to go food-tripping or bar-hopping. Then, cap it off by experiencing world-class, friendly service and utmost comfort and care at Go Hotels,” said JJ Montinola, Assistant Vice President of Roxaco–Vanguard Hotel Corporation (RVHC).

Happy hearts, happy tummies
Mario’s at Tomas Morato for example is one such restaurant that offers an unforgettable culinary experience. Splurge on a three-course meal and choose among a variety of entrées like their Twin Tournados of Tenderloin Steak Duo with Béarnaise and Mushroom Sauce, or Salmon Fillet with Roasted Garlic and Charbroiled Lamb Chop with Port Mint Sauce, or Rib Eye and Prawn Thermidor. For drinks, they have a wide assortment of wine, vodka, rum, tequila, and beer.

For a livelier atmosphere, why not get a good laugh at the famous Zirkoh Bar in Timog? A comedy bar is just the right place to let all the sawi feelings subside, while enjoying some grub, too. Comedians making fun of heartbreak and other things romantic will leave everyone less upset about the clichés of Valentine’s.

Competitive singles can choose to go Ludo’s Boardgame Bar & Café at Sct. Torillo Street, a perfect place for the whole gang. Just order some food and drinks and all the board games are yours for the taking. Try themed cocktails, inspired by shows and movies such as ‘Doctor Who’ and ‘Star Wars’ and dig in into their Chicken Wings, Beef Salpicao, Super Nachos, and their famous Vegetable or Cheese Gyoza.

KTV bar Music Match in Tomas Morato is a top choice for those who want to sing their hearts out on Valentine’s Day. Prepare your Most Requested Song list, grab the microphone, and sing the night away. Choose from a variety of food and drinks from their barkada packages, which include some of our favorite dishes such as sisig, chicken wings, and liempo. Large groups need not worry as Music Match has rooms that can fit up to 20 people.

And last but not the least, for those who look to party, Guilly’s Island in Tomas Morato is there for you. One of the longest running nightclubs in Metro Manila, it is known for the excellent crowd, food and music. Who knows? Maybe some in your barkada might find their one true love here.

To book your barkada’s V-Day bash now, visit http://www.gohotels.ph/locations-page/specific-location/timog-quezon-city/

HLURB Partners with Lamudi, Aims to Increase Transparency


Wazzup Pilipinas!

HLURB and property website Lamudi join forces to push for transparency in real estate this 2018

MANILA, January 29, 2018: The Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) and online real estate marketplace Lamudi Philippines come together for a partnership aimed at improving real estate practices in the country and encouraging transparency in the industry.

A ceremonial signing was held in Makati on January 24, and was attended by HLURB Chief Executive Officer and Commissioner Atty. Lloyd Christopher A. Lao, HLURB Commissioner Atty. Melzar P. Galicia, Lamudi Philippines Managing Director and CEO Bhavna Suresh, and Lamudi Philippines Director for Brand and Communication Ken Lerona.

A more visible HLURB

Under the one-year partnership, readers of the Lamudi: Real Estate Magazine should expect thought leadership pieces from none other than Atty. Lao, with topics ranging from the rights of buyers of real estate, to the verification of brokers, projects, and developers.

HLURB will also use the Lamudi platform to address frequently asked questions, including those about options for financing, procedures and remedies afforded to aggrieved buyers and developers, and even who to approach or look for when paying a visit to their office.

Consistent with its aim to increase transparency in the industry, HLURB also has revamped and upgraded its website, which now comes with a user-friendly online inquiry feature. This shall be integrated in the Lamudi website which receives around 1.5M visits per month, so property seekers will find it easy and hassle-free to search for registered brokers, as well as projects that have been issued License to Sell numbers.

All of these form part of HLURB’s efforts to keep up with the times by embracing digital, and to be more visible to the public and serve them better.
Transparency through technology

In the 2016 Global Real Estate Transparency Index (GRETI) by JLL, a leading real estate and investment management firm, the Philippines ranked 46th out of 109 countries and fell under the semi-transparent market. This tier, according to JLL, is where the most rapid progress in real estate transparency can be found.

Rising expectations from citizens as well as technological advancements serve as drivers for improving real estate transparency. Innovations in the prop-tech industry, JLL says, “offer the opportunity for a quantum leap in data access to support a rising culture of ‘open data.’”

Aside from high-quality accessible market data, ingredients of a transparent real estate market include: strong corporate governance, stringent regulatory enforcement, high ethical standards, and international best practice.

For Atty. Lao, responsible real estate practice is the key to the sustainability of the housing sector. He also maintained that although HLURB is a regulatory body, they are very much willing to help and cooperate with those under their jurisdiction.

Ms. Suresh, for her part, shared that Lamudi is one with HLURB in its aim to push for transparency as this shall open many doors in the future. As seen in JLL’s 2016 GRETI, higher real estate transparency is linked to new business and investment, and even plays a role in community well-being and inclusiveness.

“As the authority in the prop-tech industry in the country, Lamudi is thrilled to be partnering with HLURB for this,” she added. “We are here to support HLURB, and look forward to more partnerships like this one.”
 
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