Christmas in Philippine

Christmas here in Philippines is really cool. For us here, Christmas is defined with being together with our families and feel love in our hearts. There are a lot of ways in celebrating Christmas. It all depends on what makes a person happy and what home is for him.


Please Help the Victims of Typhoon Sendong

At around 11 o'clock in the evening last Friday, Typhoon Sendong (international name: Washi) struck Mindanao (Southern Philippines) that led to flash floods and landslides that destroyed properties and killed hundreds of people. The cities of Cagayan de Oro (CDO) and Iligan suffered mostly from the typhoon and are now in need of our help.

Donations are accepted in cash and in kind through the following channels:
  • Paypal
    For Cagayan de Oro City:
    Donate via this Paypal ID - francis.siason@gmail.com

    For Iligan City:
    Account name: Association of IIT Alumni Foundation Inc.
    Bank: BDO - - Iligan Quezon Avenue Branch
    Account No: 003120169026

    They will be providing complete financial audit documents to ensure that your money will help the hundreds of displaced victims in Iligan City, especially the evacuees in MSU - IIT Gym.
  • SMS
    For Globe subscribers:
    Text RED AMOUNT and send to 2899
    if thru GCASH: Text DONATE AMOUNT MPIN SLB and send to 2882
    Valid donation amounts are 10, 25, 50, 100, 500, and 1000

    For Smart subscribers:
    Text RED AMOUNT and send to 4143
    Valid donation amounts are 10, 25, 50, 100, 500, and 1000
  • LBC
    LBC is accepting relief goods for the victims of Typhoon Sendong and will be delivering them for free to Cagayan de Oro and Iligan. You may drop off your donations to any LBC branch nationwide or for inquiries, please call their hotline at (632) 8855999.
  • Please refer here for bank deposits and drop off points for in kind donations.

I appeal to your generosity to help the victims of Typhoon Sendong. Prayers and any form of donation will be of great help. For in kind items, the following are encouraged:
  • bottled water
  • canned goods
  • instant noodles
  • rice
  • clothes
  • footwear
  • toiletries
Let us help in any way we can.


Philippines and EU – Transcending Borders towards Cooperative Development

 (One of the 6 National Finalists of the EU Feature Writing Contest 2011)
In an increasingly borderless world of today, countries have witnessed the value of cooperation and how it evolves developmental potentials into tangible perspectives. We’ve seen how interests transcend beyond geographic disparities and cooperation as the operational model for development strategies. Regional blocks and external tie-ups consistently soar high with the benefit of mutual aid and concessions. 

The European Union, grounded with its founding principles of economic cooperation and diplomacy, has set a trademark of an effective organization that functions for the regional rise of Europe. It was able to set the framework of developmental plan which extends to risk pooling whenever a certain member-state is lagged behind with its internal conditions. With its plans of action, EU has been looked up throughout the decades.
The external constructive engagement of EU far way advances interests of tie-ups coming from a lot of countries. And Philippines has laid the foundation of its core will to share its developmental agenda with the European Union. This is the reason why EU and Philippines have established firm partnership from economic growth to social development. The Plan and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) which will be signed this 2011 will lay out the plan of action for the next years of cooperation. This is also in line with the approval of the EC-Philippine Strategy Paper and Multi-Annual Indicative Program, which identifies broad priorities for the future tie-ups. 

If we look at the context of investment pooling and the agenda of developmental cooperation, the most important precondition before any agreement is met is the alignment of developmental plans. EU, with its fulfilling perspectives, share three strategic aims with the Philippine Developmental Plan.  These are attaining a high and sustained rate of economic growth, second, equalizing access to development opportunities for all Filipinos and third, implementing effective and responsive social safety nets. It also aims to enable Filipinos to participate in the economic growth process.

Target interventions made in the past by the EU-Philippines tie-ups have achieved great mileage. The financial assistance that European Union gives has effective allocations to different sectors that are all important for holistic development. Conflict management, most especially in Mindanao, has even been a primary consideration with the relief efforts that the organization undertakes. This has been validated with the indicative allotments in the Mindanao Trust Fund for Reconciliation efforts. 

When it comes to green endeavors, the European Union has also played a role in standing forth alongside environmental policies. From forest preservations, coastal resource management down to climate change mitigations, EU has apparently shown its ways in driving perspectives towards slowly changing Philippines and its way of dealing with its internal concerns. 

Human development, social cohesion, trade and regional integration have received wide importance factoring coming from the European Commission. The Smart Cebu Project which provides SMEs for accountability, responsibility and transparency shows how the outcomes of cooperative projects bear holistic results on the ground. The Zero Carbon Resorts, a project that received primary funding from the EC, built energy autonomous resorts to contribute to appropriate technology solutions. And this shared a perspective of precedence in terms of how technological solutions have to be integrated with the advancement of modern constructions. 

In defense of life, EU has undergone important ways to bring institutional reforms forward.  Mainstreaming of indigenous peoples, institutionalization of social contracts, electoral participation and strengthening of civil societies that fight for equity are just some of the efforts that EU has taken to forward its own agenda of interest. 

Most importantly, the bureaucratic nature of EU is well-defined to uphold check and balance that ultimately assures that the projects taken have paved their ways into reality. EU has an effective counter-checking system that goes down filtering the financial uncertainties with its tie-ups. With the aspect of tying up with the private sphere as well as the government, EU can well assure that the programs it implements will be effective.
Another thing that concretizes the potentials of EU and its cooperation with the Philippines is its learning perspective from the history of its interventions. Whenever it deems that constraints block the effectiveness of a certain project, it upholds monitoring and facilitations to smoothen the ground of project implementations. 

European Union, and the success that it gears with its internal achievements, can do a lot for the Philippines not just for now but for the future generations. With its selfless sharing of values and ideals to Philippines, soon the country will soar high with its rise of competitiveness in Asia. The bilateral agreements really touch on holistic approach of development. The strategy shows how development should be faced on the ground and should never be looked at temporally. EU has a lot more to showcase in its role of shaping our developmental atmosphere. In return, Philippines will never fail in its promise of following the ideals of the union. 

We can achieve the change we’re hoping. We need to take it slowly, one step at a time.


10 Tips for Healthy Eating During Exams

When you’re studying for finals, good nutrition often slides way down on the priority list. It’s easy to get into the habit of glugging coffee and gobbling take-out pizza, because you don’t want to waste time on food preparation. But, actually, good nutrition should be part of your study plan because it’s going to help you ace those tests. The better the fuel your brain gets, the better you’ll study. It’s a...well...no-brainer.
Here are 10 tips for eating right during exams:
  1. How do I eat smarter? Meeting daily vitamin and mineral requirements will make doing your best much easier. Iron and B vitamins are especially important to maintaining the physical and mental energy necessary to study well. Iron-containing foods include red meat, cereals and spinach; one good meal idea is chili because it contains ground beef and kidney beans. Foods that contain B vitamins include whole-grains, wheat germ, eggs and nuts. Fish and soy are other foods that are said to help boost your brain by providing the nutrients it needs.
  2. Dude, chewable Vitamin C is not a meal. Dietary supplements are good, but real food is better. An orange contains not only Vitamin C, but  also fiber, beta carotene and other minerals — so it can’t be replaced by a pill. When you’re heading for the library, pack whole-food items like apples, bananas, clementines, carrot sticks or dried apricots.
  3. Eat at regular intervals. Eating regular meals helps keep nutrient and energy levels more stable, curbing the temptation of empty-calorie snacks in the vending machine.
  4. Big meals keep on turning ... in your stomach. You might find that eating the standard three-big-meals-a-day slows you down mentally and physically. Consider 5 or 6 well-balanced, smaller meals, like toast spread with peanut butter, hummus or tuna, or a piece of cheese with fruit.
  5. Meet breakfast, your new study buddy. While much is said about thereasons to eat breakfast, less known are the best ways to eat smart in the morning. Coffee and a donut just don't cut it. The idea is to get some protein, calcium, fibre and a piece of fruit or a vegetable in there. So, a bowl of cereal with milk and a piece of fruit would do the trick. Or try a cereal bar with milk. We have some additional quick breakfast ideas for you to enjoy!
  6. Going bananas? Good. Fruit ranks high among the best foods you can eat for your brain. Blueberries (which can be bought frozen in bags) get a lot of attention because they contain powerful antioxidants and other nutrients. The natural sugars in fruit offer clean energy, so you don’t experience the crash that follows consumption of refined sugar.
  7. Choose powerful vegetables. Not all vegetables are created equal. The darker the color, the higher the concentration of nutrients. For example, spinach has more to offer the mind and body than iceberg lettuce. Other great vegetable choices include bell peppers, broccoli and sweet potatoes.
  8. Smart snacking can enhance studying. Snack smart while studying and you may find that you retain more. Try to get two food groups into your snacks to balance the nutrients and keep your blood-sugar level stable. Some smart snack examples are banana with peanut butter, a small baked potato with cottage cheese, or an English muffin pizza.
  9. Gather simple recipes for nourishing foods. It's easy to feed the brain well. No-fuss recipes let you eat to succeed, without taking too much time. Here are four ideas:
    • Combine scrambled eggs with toast, cheese or salsa
    • Spend 15 minutes preparing chili and continue studying while it simmers for two hours
    • Go Tex Mex with quesadillas, adding whatever veggies you’ve got on hand
    • A little chopping is all it takes to construct a hearty Chef’s Salad
  10. Stay well hydrated. Choose your beverages well, though.  Caffeine and sugar should be kept to a minimum. Since too much caffeine can make you jittery, try to drink moderate amounts: 400 to 450 mg per day, the equivalent of 2/2.5 cups, (16 to 20 ounces or 500 to 625 ml). Better choices include water, fruit juice, milk, and anti-oxidant-richgreen tea.
Adapted from "Kathy Maister's Startcooking.com"


Love Advice and Leverage

No one will ever really understand how people would deal with their hearts except themselves. Any external advice is just a perspective of one person yet never entrench an engagement into your situation. 

Sometimes, we feel that we're being stupid. We also feel that others are becoming stupid if we think that they're making bad decisions. Who exactly is the best person who has the leverage to tell us what's the right thing to do? Perhaps, following that logic, is there really someone else who can assume that brand of leverage?

People do have a lot of differences. Maybe we find ourselves in similar situation with someone else when it comes to relationships, but differences are defined by emotional investments, loyalty disparities, time engagements , physical intimacy and a lot of factors. Given that, no one else except those people who are involved in the situation will be the best individuals to act on the situation.

Maybe, it's in seeking advice that we find comfort with. We find ourselves a lot more comfortable with acting on the situation if we got to elicit pieces of advice from people. It can also be a coping mechanism so at least to have people empathize on your situation and make it look like you're not alone in the whole atmosphere of hopeless romance and its frustration.

All of us can get stupid when it comes to love. And maybe you're gonna say that it's cheap if you've never been on it. Maybe you're gonna say that not all people will fall under such claim because you haven't been on the situation of losing that person. But when you're just on it's brink, you'll feel that it would just swallow your entirety and you'll realize that you just can't do anything but to give in on it.


The Cloud of Unknowing

For a month from now, I've been suffering from all these bad thoughts that came into my mind.This is a lot so hell to me that I just have to stay in a place where all those things happened, the place where those conspiracy to forward their selfish interest came into place.All the bad thoughts I just have to get rid of simply because I need to focus for the competition.I know that this day is just the start of this 4-day endeavor, at least in this place because it doesn't erase everything when I get back to Iligan. In a few hours from now, maybe I'm gonna compete against that person who a bit was the cause of my own emotional demise.You know that feeling of being in a place in which you were so confused whether you knew that place so well or you just don't know that place at all. Just care less, because that's the only thing I can do right now.


Random Thoughts

Regardless of how you spare effort to assure that everything will be at peace, there will always be bullshit that's gonna happen. We always come to a point that we just have to clear our name from something that we're not really a part of. But then you only end up with people who single-handedly resorted to narrow conclusions despite all the explanations that you wanted to tell them.

Yes, we can agree that we have a lot of interests. On a lot of cases, we can say that one interest intrude to another interest, which is why there are compromises which enter the scenario. We just don't really know what is the interest of one person to you. Is it all about being able to forward one's interest that's why they come upfront? If it's any true, is it reasonable that we seclude that person or it's just that such person is a reflection of any other person who by such time frame was loosingly discovered of one's fault?

I don't know.  There are just a lot of things in life that we don't understand simply because life is diverse.


Reminiscing the Past MPDC

It's near MPDC and I still can't find myself in the corridors of ADZU very soon, battling it out to defend the debate title. I can't reconcile the fact that I haven't practiced a lot for such a big game to engage into. As far as I could remember, I have only joined three practices for this semester including that one before I went to US. So apparently, I haven't really geared myself enough for such a challenge to take.

I remember how in the past, days before 23rd MPDC, I was asking  Jay-R on what are we gonna do if ever no team from IIT will break. And then we just got silent, because we know that time that it's also possible. But luckily, it didn't turn out that way. We were in the 1st and 2nd in the breaks. Woah! That's just a blast performance for IIT most especially that it's in Asians.

Right now, I do have the same fears again. What if Calvin and I won't break? Nothing really is impossible. It is fresh in my memory that Calvin and Ara didn't break in last year's BP MPDC  even if both of them ended up in the Top Ten Best Speakers.

But still, I really don't find myself going to Zambo either. I know I have a lot of friends there but it's just the first time that I would really want to back-out going to MPDC.  In the past, I'm really excited for competitions but then this time, it's just that I feel going there not for winning, but get humiliated. Haha, fine so sentimentalist. But there's just a reason why I don't wish seeing some people's faces there. I'm gonna go there regardless and just act for the competition simply because it's necessary and I'm doing this for IIT. It's time to subside all the personal issues when it's already for the contest. After all, I'll go there to join the debate, nothing more and nothing less.



In the past, I thought that a home is just a niche of individuals tied by fate to be together for a certain life frame, and that's just intrinsic. It feeds me with the mentality that love is something that you gain through the evolution of time, which is precisely the reason why on a lot of instances, you'd fall in love with a person most proximate to you. It may be about the juxtaposition of interest, and how beyond those contrasts there exists a necessary complement, and that completes a mutual inclination of emotions. At the moment those emotions gravitate towards each other, that's what you call LOVE. 

I had a very cool weekend. I went home and so I spent a day with my family and I realized a lot of things. I'm just few steps away from home when I felt that eagerness to see them. I saw my Ma, my sisters , brother and nephews. I looked at the eyes of my brother and I realized how lucky I am  to have these people in my life. Because you know that at the very least, they will never back off their cleaves on you. They will always be there regardless of what's gonna happen. They exist to support you with whatever endeavors you're going to take in your life. 

I realized how pretty detached had I been in the past from them. I never spared enough to value what should have been valued in the first place. It took me years to realize that what I could have spent of hours for someone else is already too much of what I could have possibly spared with them. But they never reproached me for who I am. They always feel that what I do is what I think is good for me, and they used to believe it. And so I really did take time sharing with them and it always makes me feel at home. Deductively, the way I explore world came at the risk of preserving the value of my familial attachment. 

When my mother asked me of what happened the few weeks ago, I just denied everything. Actually, I'm not the type who shares almost everything to their families. I have the feeling of suppressing my emotions from them because I don't want them to see me down. And so they always see the bright side of me, a way of healing that at least, I'm happy with what I'm doing. With such a brand of mentality, I was thinking that if I ever do it that way, they would not worry for me for the rest of my life. Because I know that deep inside, they extract a good of confidence and spirit of optimism from me. And I just don't want to lose that.

A few hours ago, I told my sisters that because there were just too many things that happened when I got back, I never got the opportunity to savor the nostalgia of my US experience. It's quite sad how I almost feel numb about what exactly happened there not until I would see our pictures and recall the memories of my 5 weeks American life. I also came to ask my mom about how I appear to them. I asked them if they could still feel my existence. And she told me that I'm such a 'come and go' person, but that they're happy when I get home. Now that thought makes me smile a lot.

I almost got insane for being blind of certain things these recent days not until I would find my closest friends backing off from me because they found me still lurking with my past. I never wished for them to threaten me that way, but now all I wanna do is thank them for bringing me up again and straighten me out to see both sides of the equation. Now, all I wanna do is to realign my priorities. I want to do well in academics again, and at the same time, strike a paternal interest of continuing my extra-curricular engagements. Speaking of which, I'm supposed to be the Champion of the Feature Writing in Palakasan but I got a 5 point deduction for being late for 34 minutes and so I just landed 4th.  But I'm happy about the results. I never expected they would appreciate my writing that much since I'm competing against the best of the colleges. Just seeing the positive light of things makes life a lot worth living.

I hope really that people will count on my experiences.It amazes me how this blog gets a wide array of readership.The lesson in this post is for us to value our families. Because in the end, they will be the real persons you could count on. It won't hurt if you would learn to trust again. But always remember that trust is something that is earned, and not randomly given.

These are some happy times that will never be revived again, at least with this group. But I'm happy now, so that doesn't really make a big deal to me. It pretty annoys me how other people still come to text me that they've seen this person with someone else, or they've slept together in their place or whatever. I mean, I've had enough of it. And I'm out of whatever those people are gonna do with their lives. Keep me out of the shit they were into, 'cause I just don't really care. So people, get over it, 'cause I already moved on. I'm living a far way better life now, a life of keeping what's worth keeping in the end. All I wanna do is forget. And if something's gonna start all over again, that's me and me alone rebuilding myself. 



Tonight, I will study.
And tomorrow, I will break a leg in my major exam, that I promise to myself.
No room for mediocrity, or even failures.


Life Right There

I love New York and I would always yearn for the time when I would go back in that place.It feels so good that when you're able to set your foot on that place, you'd feel some sense of achievement.I would look forward for that time to be a New Yorker and make a living in the City that Never Sleeps. New York Times Square, the best place I guess in the city, is just a total blast. It feels like heaven to be there.I hope I could spend more time shopping in that concrete jungle with all the awesome lights and popular spots which I used to see only in movies.New York is just everything - the busy streets, people with diverse interests and the skycrapers define how the city prouds itself in reaching the top. It reminds me of myself thinking that mediocrity is just an unacceptable word for me. I will never settle for the less. I will always try my best to be on top. New York  - the concrete jungle where dreams are made of.


Starting Life Anew...

This is the time when I have to look at things in long-term.
There's no time for waiting for other people to change.
You need to project yourself based on your future ideals.
Never let anyone steal what you've got for your own fulfillment.
Don't make them laugh at your own demise.
Fate will give them the right vengeance.
Their lack of guilt is a manifestation of their shallow characters.
And thus, they'll find their ways resolved for who they are.
Your destination as a person is destined by your ways to other people.
Your deeds advance your real persona.
Don't hide on other people's faces.
You are who you are, and you alone knew it.
Never allow anyone intrude your pursuit for your goals.
They'll get less based on what they've done to you.
After all, their deeds will all come back to them.
And that will make them badly incomplete.
Think of the people who value you the most.
And treasure those memories with you.
Forget the rest paved by those who don't deserve you.
They aren't worth keeping enough for you to love them back.
Learn to trust that life has a spot for you.
But don't trust other people easily.
Believe that life has secured you a discreet opportunity.
Not anyone is even in rush.
Take it one step at a time.
Learn the lessons your experiences gave you.
Don't throw the good things away.
Keep them with you and extract the good out of it.
Get rid of those bad memories the experience shared.
And that way, you'll be a better person.
Don't think of what the other person would do.
They got you hanging in foolishness before they respected you.
Count on what vengeance means.
But don't act on it.
Let the fate do, and give yourself a leap of ahievement.
For in the end they'll realize.
They just didn't lose you.
They lost the right direction.
Never care about those people that pull you down.
They don't even deserve something for themselves.
How much more judging others already in leverage.
Keep yourself on the right track.


Ethics and Perspectives

When I was young, I used to ask what more could this life really offer. You grow up, you learn in school, you got to work when you graduate, then you marry, grow old and that’s it. It’s like a time frame of past, present and future that keeps on happening all over again. And when our lives end, we come to ask what difference have we made in this world in our lifetime?

In that moment,I realized that I view life in its temporal aspect. But then I looked at the journey a person undertakes within those years, a look at life on its two ends, and it made me feel it's colorful. It’s full of different stories, from different people with different walks of life.

I believe that life is a puzzle in which we need to fit in each other’s interests. We are born in this world with certain standards that we all have to abide. On a lot of cases, I feel that choices aren’t genuine enough to be real. Choices we take are always contrasted based on cultural norms, parental fit, goal orientation, social acceptability and things like that. So even though there are universally accepted values, this is highly relative based on our situation and how we would project ourselves on that instance.

I have always lived myself independently. I believe that individual freedom is one of the greatest values this world should celebrate. But I can admit that the principles I’m holding on are always based on what I think are for the greater good of the people around me. Beyond that, I personally care about how my environment affects the way I am and how it could possibly constrain me from achieving my goals. I want to inspire a common vision with my immediate community.

Leadership is a key that factors to every system that exists in this world. I believe that everyone, in any moment of his life, has been a leader. And I am really abiding to this value. Because I think that for you to achieve success, you need to be a good leader for yourself and as well as a follower to your own principles. And this idea certainly deduces to the fact that one’s greatest enemy is himself, and that’s why he needs to overcome any personal issues before he can overcome greater issues outside his personal boundaries.

Other values are founded on our objectives. Honesty, for example, is not an absolute principle. It is all about a matter of check and balancing. When we feel that the situation demands a compromise, it now depends on our discretion in lieu with the hierarchy of our interests.

At the end of the day, we realize that our perspectives are subject to different conditions. It is just a matter of how we take it. It is just a matter of holding on to what we believe in.

Freedom to choices, selfless leadership and situational engagement, these are the ethical values that I am living with as a student-leader.

I believe that everything is possible,but only to be taken one step at a time.

The word cloud represents my beliefs well. The words "life", "different", "believe", "values", etc. are in bigger fonts as compared to the others, exactly the way I expected it. This reflects the principles that I am holding on wherever I go. I particularly like this exercise because it allows us to contemplate on what we really are fighting for. Sometimes,we get confused by  our own values. On a lot of instances, we change the way we prioritize them based on our situation. Either ways, we will bear the brunt of all our actions. And that becomes the foundation of our values in the future.


Social Media, In and Of Itself

What is social media and what makes it unique from other forms of media?
Social media essentially is a category of online media where people are talking, participating, sharing, networking, and bookmarking online - Ron Jones
With the coming of the age of social media, the media has been democratized and the world is getting a lot smaller. It brings about relationships and conversations which aren't possible in other forms of media like newspapers and television. The social media gave an opportunity for everyone to have a share in developing a certain piece of story, which makes it able to take all sides of a story. This is quite different in a one-sided media where interaction is very minimal.

Another thing that social media can forward is that it can reach a lot of people in a specified time. With a lesser bureaucracy at hand, we are able to promote causes as efficient as possible. Advocacy groups could get mileage, elicit support without being able to spend for the space. So I must say that social media is a very effective platform of information exchange.

The social media reaches a lot of audiences. It projects an open platform of networks where people can do a lot of things. They can chat, play games, bookmark, advertise and others. You can also meet a lot of people with different interests. People who are of the same interest can find each other given their parallel backgrounds. With the opening of new media, the world has been continually supplemented of multiculturalism.

 Social media embraces passion and identity. Aside from opening up to diverse cultures, you also identify yourself with your own qualities. In social media, you are able to know your limitations more as you recognize your own personality, interests and even strengths and weaknesses. You profile yourself based on who you truly are or what you want others to think of who you are.
Beyond those benefits of community sharing, marginal advantages brought about by social media also exist. But it's highly contextual, and highly depends on how a social media is being utilized. It was said that ever since the institution of the social media, government has become more transparent as check and balances are now existing. Things are likelier to be exposed with the use of social media because there's an open engagement of people. As opposed to newspapers and televisions, wherein information is already filtered based on pubic acceptability.

In general, social media is unique and props advantages not just to the media world but to the society as a whole.And I believe that as generations come by, it will continue to lead us to the greater good if we use it in the right ways.

A Leap of Agenda Through the Social Media

How are governments and agencies using social media to advance their agenda?

Governments and agencies have well adapted to the call of times. Indeed, a lot of government institutions in status quo already integrate social media with the promotion of their agenda. The "Facebook Diplomacy" is a very good example of how the government utilizes this platform to forward its own objectives.

This video below manifests how the Philippine government used the social media to spread this informative campaign video on citizen's participation for a cleaner elections. 

As a direct result of this promotion, the electorate has been vigilant in guarding their votes and participated in the agenda of the government to have a more transparent election.  It's basically calling for vigilantism to anything suspicious or wrongdoing all throughout the elections and reporting them to the authorities with the use of new media. It gained a lot of feedbacks and many cases of electoral fraud were reported and given with due recourse.

Given the different perspectives on how the government can possibly use the social media, the people in return has been very positive to the interaction that this platform provides. Facebook and Twitter have been top social networking sites for the government to tap to reach out to its own people.Government officials have fan pages in Facebook and make updates there. Agencies build advocacy pages wherein people could just sign-up virtually if they wanted to join the cause. They also use Twitter to reach to more people. It's just like a way of catering to different interests of individuals that's why they're widening their horizons.

But just like the Facebook Diplomacy, the government is becoming more strategic in utilizing the social media.  In this instance, they used it to counter terrorism. So apparently, government and agencies have evolved their standards in dealing with their operations, in lieu of the improvement of technology.

And now, social media is integrated into the system and continually leads us towards mobilization and development.

Social Media And Its Integration To Political Strategies

How do candidates and campaign managers integrate social media into their political strategies?

Today, we can see how the social media continually creates an atmosphere of change in the world. The political sphere, undeniably, is one of the institutions that have been responding to the revolution of development. And it is very important to recognize the value of technologies and innovations to improve the way these political structures work.

When you talk about politicians, they are always equated to a popular mileage. You get a platform of support from the people when you have good public relations. And that is the reason why they have to be strategic in deploying political mechanisms to gain a support base. Because every action that they do faces commensurate response from the public.

In the recent elections that we had, we've seen how social media has been used by candidates and campaign managers as a political strategy. As how Jose Vargas quote it in The Washington Post, Barack Obama is the social networking king after having profiles in a lot of social networking sites to reach out to many people.

He's the first candidate to have profiles on BlackPlanet.com and MiGente.com, popular soc-nets in the black and Latino communities, and also on newer soc-nets such as AsianAve.com (for Asian Americans) and GLEE.com ("GLEE" stands for "Gay, Lesbian and Everyone Else"). - Washington Post
This strategy was seen effective as a huge turn-out from the young people voted for Obama,the ones who also comprise the biggest fraction in social networking sites.

Other politicians also use video advertisement campaigns being spread into social media.

This video shows the commercial campaign of the newly elected President of the Philippines Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino. As you can see in the video, his platform was shown by promoting the ideals of the masses. He is catering different interests in the video by showing different people from different walks of life. Through this, political platforms can be shown in an entertaining way that people would more likely attend to. And that is the kind of strategy that has been used by a lot of politicians to forward their ideals in the recent election that we had.

Twitter has been a widely used social media today. Political candidates use twitter because it can reach a lot of mileage and you can update easily. In Twitter, people feel closer to politicians especially when the Twitter page of the politician is interactive to its followers. Through that way, politicians are able to appeal as individuals who listens to all concerns of its people. And this also neutralizes the norm that they are a distant entity from the public.

So in  general, we see how social media has been used as a platform of candidates and campaign managers to reach more people. They see it as an effective tool to forward their advocacies and even gain a good image in the public. When you have good projection to the public, they'll more likely vote for you. When they see you accessible to these media outlets, they'll more likely attend to you over someone they only see in TV. And this is precisely specific with the fact that politicians who gain political seats today have very good public relations.

Social media brings you political leverage. It now depends on how you use it.


Visiting Michigan

This is taken in Detroit, Michigan facing Windsor, Ontario,Canada. I and my friends were joking to prepare our passports so that we could start swimming to Canada. One thing I've learned about is that Canada and United have very good relations to each other. So even if there are border and security controls, there are parts in which people could freely go cross-country without getting caught. The regulation isn't that tough because Canadians and Americans are very good friends to each other.

This is a pic with the statue of one of the Wright Brothers who flew the first plane.

Right there is a fountain in the interjection of Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village. For all you know, the Henry Ford Museum is the greatest American history attraction. It contains different artifacts and in every angle of the museum, you're like travelling in different decades in the past.

This one is taken near the railway of Greenfield Village. We really had fun in this place as well because it's like Enchanted Kingdom back there in the Philippines. But it's really a modified village with food stands,gift shops, rides and people wearing character costumes. I love it.

Mary Ann Cooper and Elexx Freeman are some of the awesome friends we've met in the Greenfield Village. They are the subject of our story (together with Mel).

I just absolutely love this float. The glaring difference that it has is the spoon for the ice cream. McDonalds in Philippines don't place spoon for the float.

And there you'll find some skycrapers of Detroit.
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