Wednesday, December 2, 2009

ABS CBN using Jesus for their commercial purposes?

ABSCBN, the largest broadcast network station in the Philippines, recently launched "Parol ni Bro" or Bro's Christmas Lantern. The promo retails Christmas Lanterns, which should help raise funds for their charity, Sagip Kapamilya (a program which provides relief to Philippine communities affected by natural disasters). However, the veiled promo refers to the names of Jesus, who is called "Bro" in their primetime hit series, "May Bukas pa." (There's still (hope) tomorrow).

I know what they intend to do here but, as a Marketing person myself, I find this promo hypocritical and very dark for many reasons. People may not notice it immediately but as soon as you read their press release material on their website, you will immediately agree with me.

First, their press release details the promo and all their other network activities but is short of one essential factor - explain or show cause what is Sagip Kapamilya all about. Is Sagip Kapamilya that important? Show it. Second, how ignorant ABSCBN is to claim that the lantern they sell is about Jesus (Bro) when Jesus is all about the message of hope, truth, and salvation. Their reason for promoting the lantern is full of fluff and vague. Their PR says, "The light of Christ, symbolized by the Parol, will give warmth that heals all wounds and provide light that brings back hope. The light is passed on to us and, in turn, we kindle the heart of one another. So, we become one in picking up the pieces, rebuilding and moving on."

Huh? Light of Christ? Passed on to us? Kindle the heart? Picking up the pieces? Please. What light of Christ are we talking about? What does that light mean? Why not expound it since they already mention the lantern's symbolism. What light that would heal all wounds and provide light that brings back hope? Huh? It's vague.

So what is "Parol ni Bro" all about? It's about commercialism - dark commercialism and nothing more. It's even sadder that now, they use Jesus for their commercial gain. I abhor advertisers who play people's emotions to the lowest ebb of sensibilities. I dare say that, because of this, ABSCBN is bordering on portraying Jesus as an alternative character to Santa Claus? If ABSCBN wants to raise funds for their charity program, why can't it promote it on its own merit?

Jesus is not for sale people! Please take that campaign down and give us, the Filipinos, more respect and credit we deserve. The intention may be good but the execution and motive of the campaign is wrong.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Poor illustration to promote credit card scheme


What's wrong with this picture? What's wrong with this flyer?

A lot.

The flyer blares, "Pay next year!" Wow. Sounds like a great deal. But the problem is not the deal, it's the way it was being communicated to its cardholders.

Credit cards are not money. It's a loan that you will have to pay back in interest.

What makes me sad is the depiction of BDO's flyer - using Christmas to illustrate the "fun side" of borrowing money. Check out the bunch of receipts piling up to form a cute Christmas tree. To me, this promo is plainly saying that you will be in debt - deep debt. Is that any way of starting your new year?

I cannot believe that my bank, Banco de Oro, came out with this poor illustration promoting their scheme. I do not know who the genius behind this flyer is and I am sure sad why people approved this illustration.

The banks will not help you become responsible savers as this illustration shows. It's cultivating the wrong culture. They don't care if you're deep in debt for as long as their benchmarks are reached.

Why can't they use images that promote care and responsibility? Why not show a picture of a family man using BDO credit cards to pay for a family's medical bills? Or why not show a businessman buying computers to supplement his internet cafe business? Why can't we show something more positive and progressive? Wouldn't this be the most proper way of promoting, "Pay next year!"?

The Philippine Ad Congress just finished its conference. We MUST IMPROVE our communications for the benefit of our patrons.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Colorum FX Huli!

Sorry for singling you out buddy but you should stop this if you don't want to get caught.

The video you see here is just one of those vehicles that just will not follow the law.

It's unfair for other public vehicles who ply the routes and pay taxes and other fees to just get the franchise they need to run their businesses. It's not an excuse not to follow the law.

Shot on ADB Avenue, October 31, 5:09 PM.
video

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Guadalupe bridge terrorists


This message is not supposed to cause terror but to disturb you to do something about this incident.

My co-workers were driving home down EDSA crossing Guadalupe Bridge past 6 PM awhile ago. I usually drop my co-workers on the way to help them get home faster at least. We just made it to the initial section of the bridge plying on the fourth lane of five when all of a sudden I saw three very young men (in their early twenties or late teens) rough up a chubby middle-aged young professional. In a very swift moment, the taller person put a knife around his neck of the unsuspecting man while his two other companions started grabbing the man's rear and side pockets of his pants. The only word I could utter from the initial moment it happened was, "Uy, yon o!"

I motioned to the direction where the incident was happening and all three of my companions were alarmed. I started rolling down the passenger side windows and we were about to yell out to alarm other motorists. I tried to veer my car to the right but a passenger bus blocked my way. It was frustrating. All we could do at that moment was to hope for some bus passengers to do something but we don't know anymore.

We were stunned and shocked.

The man - as I still remember his facial expression - was bearing a grin as if to say, "okay, you got me. Do whatever you want just don't hurt me." He was resigned to his fate. He couldn't do anything. He was in a head-lock from behind and a knife stuck in his throat. He couldn't do much because the three thieves could either cut his throat, push him off the bridge, push him to the road and be run over by buses, or a combination of any these. It was a no-win situation. Poor guy.

I'm not surprised by this act but at the same time I feel so much anger and frustration inside This is the third of this incident I've heard and have now seen in a matter of two weeks. A week before this incident, our messenger nearly got his throat cut when three men tried to get his mobile phone. It's the same operation. Two or three days before this phone-stealing thing happened, a co-worker of ours who was walking down the same path got his wallet stolen with the same style of heist.

Can you help? Do you know anyone who works for the Makati or Mandaluyong City Halls? City police? Can we have more policemen guard civilians walking through this bridge? Can't civilians walk freely along this section of the bridge without being terrorized by muggers or thugs? Can you do something to help? All of us earn our keep and we should not be terrorized by these people who only have regard for their motives.

***The image above is the section of the bridge where these terror-thieves prowl and strike unsuspecting civilians.***

CREDITS: Thank you to Alfredo Camba, Jr. for this picture.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Red Flag Politicians: Jell Transport defies suspension; LTFRB, PNP, MMDA inutile?

I'm re-posting this so that people will be more aware of what the community should do in the face of those who endanger the security of our commuting public.

Red Flag Politicians: Jell Transport defies suspension; LTFRB, PNP, MMDA inutile?

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Monday, May 11, 2009

FAIL! Manual BREAST PUMP dapat!

Of all the things that people will screw up on is the name of a gadget that should be easy to spell. What the heck is a "Brerst Pump?" The spelling should obviously be spelled as "Breast" but since the retailing company already came out with its packaging and someone is already suffering from this flak (somewhere in China?), the store simply continued selling this product to the consumers.

To our culture, this is just "puwede na" or "good enough," but really is it good enough? Why settle for this kind of output? Why even come out with a misspelled product to begin with? This is clearly FAIL (in blogging terms). Our culture should be adhering to higher standards and this should not happen again.

Where did I see this?
Look closely and you'll see that the brand is Baby & Co., a product by SM Department Store. Did you find any similar product that has this kind of boo-boo? Share 'em. Write me at filipinocritique@gmail.com

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What are the traffic authorities thinking?

(Author's note: Thanks to another blogger, I found out that this signage was done intentionally to raise awareness for a politician's bid to run as president this coming 2010 elections. After trying to make a fool out of me and other like-minded Filipinos, I've decided to scrap him and other candidates like him from a list I made who I want to consider as the Philippines' future leader Guess Who?)

My wife and I were on our way to visit a friend in the hospital when we chanced upon this signage in the intersection of EDSA and Ayala Avenue. This signage seems to summarize what the traffic authorities in my country is doing to solve street woes. They probably think putting up this signage in white is funny. It's not. They still have to put the white signage to add humor to their message as if the U-Turn slot sign is not clear. What is its purpose? Why do they have to do add a Carabao translation that will not add value and then add the name of a prominant Southeast Asian leader? It's insulting in those two fronts. It's a shame. This shot was taken last April 26, 2009 around 11:15 AM.

I hope they take this down if someone played a prank against the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority of MMDA. Can you help me? Let's raise this issue. (See related post here.)

Traffic Operations Center
Dir. Angelito Vergel De Dios
Tel. 882-2638; 882-4151 to 77 local 338


Sunday, March 29, 2009

McDonald’s earth-friendly food container

My wife and I went to Rockwell Mall, Makati (Side note: My wife just finished working on our family budget. It took her the whole day to look for the right template for this work and she did it so nicely.) to spend time making blogs. We were supposed to eat at the cafĂ© located beside Fully Booked but I suggested checking out McD’s in the basement and perhaps save more money.

We ordered light snacks – just enough to fill us for the next meal. When the food was served in my tray I was surprised to see a box-type container that says, “Spaghetti” on top. I took it and examined it closely. “Will you look at that,” I said to myself. It was something different. McDonald’s new container is boasting to all its competitors that something could be done to correct the damage the population is doing to the environment. I don’t need to elaborate the good effects of coming out with recyclable materials. But coming out with paper-based food containers is a long overdue idea that should’ve been done by fast food giants of the world.

The manager trainee ‘Don’ told me that the new containers are implemented in select McDonald’s stores. Out of more than two hundred plus McD’s fast-food chain, box-type containers are used in ten stores scattered around the country. That’s less than five percent. Well, it’s a start. I just hope that other companies like Jollibee, Wendy’s, Chowking, Greenwich will challenge each other to look for earth-friendly food containers more.

In this environmental conscious time, I am always applauding establishments who don’t think about profits all the time. They go for what is right and invest in something that will last longer and bigger than them. Producing box-type containers is more expensive but it should be the standard. The owners, executives, managers should always keep their kids and their kids’ kids in mind when they continue to run the operations of their business. Besides, the bottom line is the environment their family will inherit.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Bubbling Brook and the Deep Well?

Are you a bubbling brook or a deep well? In a married life, they say either one of the partner is a bubbling brook or a deep well. Simply put, one always likes to talk (Bubbling brook) while the other tends to be quiet and will not do much of the talking (Deep Well). I find this to be so true in almost all couples I know. Someone will always do the spokesperson persona, one who would give out ideas, one who would always negotiate while the other would rather be quiet, the one who would stay out of the limelight and have his/her partner do more of the talking.

Now look at yourself and your spouse. Are you a bubbling brook or a deep well? Think deeper and ask why you think your spouse is either one of that tag? Oh yeah, men in more cases you can imagine can be the bubbling brook. We don't want any stereotyping here.

Cherry Foodarama's woeful customer service policies


I didn’t know having a pen and paper would get you into so much trouble in Cherry Foodarama, Mandaluyong. My wife and I were at this supermarket at around 8 pm, last night (March 24), to survey the cheapest diaper brand in the market, it’s no joke buying costly disposable stuff.

While doing our survey, we were accosted by a plain-clothes security personnel. Apparently, Cherry do not want you to list things in a piece of paper. It can be misconstrued as spying. But are we spying in the context of the word, "spying"?

We got into a heated argument. Finally, with my wife’s prodding, I cooperated and went with him to see the operations manager. In full view of the shoppers that evening, I wasted no time telling them that it is the consumer’s right to know how they can save. I questioned their policies and line of questioning that seemed to point that we’re there to do their store harm. I belabored that point that price spying is the least of retailers’ problems in the today’s society. To win customers, it’s customer service – for crying out loud.

In all of this, I was already furious, tight-lipped, and was red in anger. The man apologized and I advised them to do something more to protect their customers. This is no ‘Marcosian’ world we live in now where people are made to be afraid of doing freely what will protect them in this gloomy economy.

Here are more thoughts for Cherry Foodarama: Did you train your security personnel (agency) to see what was written in the paper I was writing on? Did you tell your security agency and advised them to ask questions first and find out what we were doing? What warrants your security personnel’s actions to order us follow him – like Cherry owns us or something? That was rude. If indeed we were doing something wrong (and obviously not) then the best your security personnel should’ve done is to warn or to advise us for guidance.

How embarrassing, Cherry Foodarama. Your customer service policies are a shame. It's Drakonian and out-of-touch.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

My greatest fear right now

What's my greatest fear? A lot actually. I don't know which one to write about but the very first thing that comes to mind is the "scheduled" earthquake happening around this time. My friend from Hawaii, Harold, is filming his documentary flick about this scientist friend of his who, according to him, has found a way to predict earthquakes all around the world. The most famous one he predicted is the one off the coast of Indian Ocean. That one caused catastrophic damage and caused human lives in all coastline countries of Asia and Africa.

Now, the predication is towards the Philippines. My friend conversed with me through chat and broke the bad news about the earthquake that is about to happen soon. The date his friend said was March 12 - March 26th. It's March 16 and we're still about ten days away from the predicted deadline. I am particularly fearful of this one because it's coming at a time when my family and I are living in a condominium. We're at the fifth level of the condo place and each floor consist of two levels. That makes us living on the tenth level of a building, if you know what I mean.

I could only hope and pray that the big one will not hit our neighborhood. I don't want to sound selfish but I know somewhere around the country another person is praying that the natural calamity should happen somewhere else and not their community. I understand.

So what am I clinging on these days? Faith.

I'm clinging on faith and it's the only one I can hold on to in times when uncertainties in life is always constant.

I'm hoping for the best.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Men, why carry your lady's bag?

Ever since my wife ordered me not to carry her bag, I never thanked her enough.

I don't know what other women will say about this issue but I just think that men shouldn't be carrying a woman's purse. It's just wrong. It degrades men and mind you, that's no chauvinistic statement nor is it an attempt to excuse men from being courteous.

Can anybody tell me what started this practice? I could only guess why, but this 'practice' should stop. Some men swear their sexually secured and couldn't care less about carrying purses. Other men say they will do it out of 'love.' While some other men will do it for the sheer intention of helping the women they like. Whatever the reason is, I think men should change their way of thinking and ask this question: If men would carry necessary things women should do then, will men wear lipstic, put make up on, wear skirts?

I don't think the contention should go farther than that. Why? Simply because women carries stuff that compliment their look, matches their clothes, and compliments their overlook fashion. That's it. Are men accessories? Are men part of their 'overall look?' If so - men dating women like these and forces them to carry their things should think twice.

And what did my wife tell me about this? She plainly says that men carrying their woman's purse gives the wrong signal, the wrong impression. If men will prove their love, courtesy, and sweetness to their lady then why not start by giving women R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Open doors for them, listen to their needs, date your wife, give them words of encouragement...but carrying their bags? Riiiight...

We, men, can do better.