May 31, 2008

The May 28 story “Barrios wants PBA out of RP Team” by Manila Bulletin reporter Waylon Galvez drew the ire of many sports fans in an online forum I frequently visit. Galvez wrote:

The all-pro team that placed 9th in the previous FIBA-Asia Olympic Qualifying meet in Japan could be the last international tournament for the PBA.

This was the suggestion made by PBA Commissioner Sonny Barrios as he asked the board to consider the scrapping of the “pickup” system in forming a national team that has not worked since professional players started to don the national colors 18 years ago.

“My point was that it’s obvious that our market will not be attracted during the games if we don’t have the stars of the show,” Barrios said…”

Read more.

PBA Commissioner Sonny Barrios has an amnesia. He needs to be reminded of the fact that the Philippines is no longer one of the basketball powerhouse in Asia.

The league has the best basketball players in the country but it should not exist in a vacuum. Why? Because other Asian countries had greatly improved their basketball programs. Countries such as Iran, Lebanon, and Jordan would surely ring a bell. We need to “level up” our program. The best way to do that is to go international and compete with the best countries out there.

As regards to the apprenticeship program for the RP-youth team, I am so sure that those players would then eventually join the PBA. Let’s face it, almost all basketball players here in the country aspire to play in the PBA to earn fame and fortune. So what’s the point of building a program like that?

One ‘forumer’ mentioned that the best basketball program would be building a permanent national team composed of the best players in the PBA and continuously train them. Then gradually replace them with the younger and better ones but still continue the program. This is the basketball program that Chot Reyes had already started. What Barrios has in mind now is insanity.

If Barrios’s directive would be implemented, the old-fashioned commissioner would then prove that he has no vision AT ALL for the Philippine basketball.


Ka Bel bids farewell

May 20, 2008

Anakpawis Representative  Crispin “Ka Bel” Beltran passed away early this morning after suffering severe head injuries and four cardiac arrests. Ka Bel, a long time labor unionist, was known to be the passionate militant leader who courageously advanced the interests of Filipino workers.

I can still remember the day when I, together with my co-interns at the Southern Tagalog Exposure, had a rare chance to personally visit him while he was in a hospital arrest at the Philippine Heart Center. That was in 2006. We were able to talk to him. He shared his thoughts on the fight against trade union repression. He narrated a lot of stories. And during the small talk, we made him cry. Very passionate talaga siya.

This is a very sad day for the working class.

He will forever be an inspiration to us.

Remember this? It has another version. This time, Antonio Molina’s statement is in the vernacular.

“Proud na nag-graduate ako sa UP. Pero excited akong makitang mag-graduate ang anak ko sa Informatics.” – Yeah right! Baka hindi lang kasi UPCAT passer ang anak mo! Whatever to you Kuya, whatever!

Written by Carmela Fonbuena, 05 May 2008

In the age of YouTube, Multiply and other popular online networking sites, Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) deputy director Luis Teodoro is urging journalists to put up their own blogs to “set examples” online.

“Journalists should consciously go into blogging to set examples,” Teodoro told Newsbreak.

Teodoro expressed concerns about the wealth of information made available online. “Many of those who post information online are irresponsible,” he said. “Sometimes, it becomes damaging. It disrupts the democratic dialogue.”

The YouTube Cebu rectal scandal and Australian Brian Gorrell’s allegations in Blogspot are just two of the latest controversies to emerge online that have raised concerns about information made available through the web. The first involves the broadcast of a medical operation against the patient’s consent; the latter involves publication of supposedly libelous content.

Teodoro is proposing that “there should be a means of self-regulation” in blogs. “Journalists should be models online,” he said. Be it a blog on political opinion or personal lifestyle, “the principles of journalism should apply.”

“There should be verification and fairness even if it’s an opinion piece. There should be an effort to get the other side no matter how little the space you allot,” said Ateneo de Manila University communication professor Chay Hofileña, who agreed with Teooro that journalists can set examples online.

“Ethics should show in your blogs,” Teodoro said.

Hofileña stressed that journalists should be very careful because the “the standard for a news reporter is higher.” She said journalists should come up with more substantial articles online .

Click here to read more.