Jumpstarting the blah blah

#MeetMatt and the meaning of #blogging

20140617-084157-31317244.jpg

It was more than a year ago since I put my thoughts into words after realizing the fact that I can no longer write the way I used to. Perhaps, it’s because I already abandoned the anger, the angst and the non-conformist attitude that defined my existence during my youth, during my Philosophy days as a student in San Beda College.

I became a grown-up.

The motivation that fueled my passion in expressing myself either in the form of poetry or prose was suddenly channeled into the Sisyphean reality of my more-than-eight-hours-a-day of “making a living” as a yuppie. I traded my metaphors and narratives with PR strategies, communications plans and other cost-benefit project proposals for the companies that I worked for through the years. And I want to believe that I became good at it.

I sold-out.

I stopped writing.

I am now making a living.

Until last week after having a small talk with a guy named Matt Mullenweg when our company, Globe Telecom, hosted him for a bloggers meet-up. Matt co-founded WordPress.com which is the popular blogsite that houses countless of blogs like this one under my namesake. This guy, who reads one chapter of a book every morning to jumpstart a creative day, paved the way to make writing available for everyone. This is a tribute for Matt for giving us WordPress.com.

Anyone can write but not anyone can get published during the pre-digital age. The limitation of the print medium because of commercial considerations made writing available only to the elite few whose hegemony discriminated what should be written and what should be read.

Writing exists to be read regardless of the form. Writing needs a reading channel to have its true form. It seeks an audience otherwise the thought behind it can be forgotten.

But thanks to digital mavericks like Matt who opened the door to those who aspire to be published. For as long as one wants to express individuality, shares interests and passion, or fights for a cause, a writing medium is readily available. People like me started to pound the keyboard and published our thoughts in WordPress.com and became writers in our own little right.

Anyone can now be read.

Anyone can now be published.

Anyone can now be a blogger.

That night after Matt’s visit at The Globe Tower, I shared a few cold beers with an old friend from San Beda who attended the WordPress community Meet-up and we exchanged some ideas about the event. Being a former campus journalist and a sell-out like me, he said that blogging has become the alternative press for many who can’t get thru traditional media. True, but I said that the basic principle of blogging is that it’s always subjective. Blogging is supposed to be based on the experience of the blogger with the thoughts made into words and then shared among us. However, a blog can go bigger than what the blogger intends and even bigger than the traditional press because of the reach of Internet.

Blog content nowadays can go beyond the experience and opinion of every blogger thanks to social media. Blog content no matter how subjective can project a perception of objectivity when shared and amplified using social media especially if readers can relate to it. Relevance of content can generate traffic and establish a fan-based of readers which can make a blog popular. Popularity means acceptance by the readers whose judgement can build content credibility for the blog and blogger. Content consistency is also important as it can slowly elevate the blogger into a subject-matter expert of the chosen topic or theme that the blog carries.

Blogging has democratized writing. It made editors and critics irrelevant. The opinion of readers is what matter most than the selected few in this digital age. Blogging has set writing free from the critics and editors. The number of likes, shares and comments (be it negative or positive) shapes the credibility of a blog. The readers will be the judge if the content is good or if it sucks.

In the Philippines, blogging has gone beyond personal. But this blog is already too long. I will tackle that in my next blog: The state of Philippine Blogging.

Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/joceldeguzman

Globe CEO Ernest Cu: Salamat Davao!

Image

Globe CEO Ernest Cu is not your typical executive who spends all his time inside the boardroom. For starters, the Globe chief, also known as simply Ernest, actually goes the extra mile to thank personally Globe customers.

In the “Kamustuhan” which is Globe’s customer caravan held in Davao recently, he literally went the “extra miles” to show his unending gratitude to Globe customers “We want our products to go beyond just texting, calling and providing connections between you, your family, and your businesses. And by simply being here, it goes to show that we mean more to you than a simple phone or internet connection. To that, we are truly grateful,” Ernest said.

Loyal Globe patrons such as individual customers, high-end Platinum subscribers, retailers as well as representatives from the local media from Davao City and its adjacent provinces showed an overwhelming support for the Globe CEO. “This is actually our first time to do this in Davao which is an important market for us, that is why we endeavored to ground-break our network modernization in your area, as well as have the initial leg of the “Kamustahan” in your midst,” remarked Ernest.

Ernest revealed that the Kamustahan is the company’s manifestation to get to know its patrons on a deeper level. “We would like to get to know and interact with you on a more regular basis. An emotional bond is what we would like to continue to build with you.Our plans and offers that you availed of were instrumental in our multiple quarters of growth in terms of garnering significant market share over the last two and a half years for the company. It’s an amazing feat for industry like telecommunications, and we have you to thank for that. All credit goes out to you, our loyal Globe subscribers,” Ernest said to the Mindanaoans on hand in the event.

The Kamustahan event in Davao is just the first of the many customer caravans scheduled for 2013 with Ernest Cu. Watch out for the next caravan at your provincial area.

Crising

image

May bahid naman
ng kalungkutan
ang tila ba balisang
kalangitan,
dahil sa bawat
patak ng ulan
at ungol ng hangin
ay ang pangambang
nagbabadya
na mapagkaitang
muli na makita ang ngiti
ng isang maayong araw.

Sapagkat maya-maya lamang
ay may tila ba ilog na namang
dadaloy sa mga lansangan
upang muling iagos
sa kawalan
ang mga pangarap
at pag-asang
kakaipon pa lamang.

May bahid na naman
ng kalungkutan
ang tila ba balisang
kalangitan.

– jokel
(February 19, 2013 – 1:15pm)

Tribute to Wislawa Szymborska

Tatlong Kakaibang Salita
(Three Oddest Words by Wislawa Szymborska, translated by Jocel de Guzman)

Sa tuwing bibigkasin ko ang salitang kinabukasan,
bahagi na kaagad ang mga unang kataga nito ng kahapon.
Sa tuwing bibigkasin ko ang salitang katahimikan,
pinapatay ko kaagad ang kanyang diwa.
Sa tuwing bibigkasin ko ang salitang kawalan,
nakakabuo ako ng isang kamalayan na di kayang hagkan ninuman

The Three Oddest Words

When I pronounce the word Future,
the first syllable already belongs to the past.
When I pronounce the word Silence,
I destroy it.
When I pronounce the word Nothing,
I make something no non-being can hold.

Azkals vs. UFL All Star: A victory for PH Football

Perhaps it can be considered as the most exciting exhibition game in the history of Philippine football. The PH Azkals fell short against the United Football League (UFL) selection with a score of 3-4 last June 5 at the University of Makati. It was a see-saw battle filled with suspense as both teams tried to outwit and outplay each other with UFL All Star scoring the final goal to break the deadlock with less than a minute left in the game. 

The venue was filled with an estimated 5,000 spectators and the match was televised live on Studio 23 earning a 1.9% ratings considering that it was on a UHF channel and it was not really advertised. Ofcourse, the crowd drawer was the Azkals but people were treated with fanstastic football game.

Many were expecting the Azkals to walk with an easy victory but the UFL All Star were more determined to win considering that the game was their opportunity to showcase the quality of football of their league. It was the UFL’s coming out party proving that there is an abundance of football talent in the Philippines outside the national team. 

Although the UFL All Star won, the real winner of the game is Philippine football. The UFL is the only club based football league in the country started by LBC Express, Inc. long before the rise of the popularity of the Azkals.  Half of the members of the Azkals are playing for a UFL team including its team capatin, Aly Borromeo who comes from the Kaya FC in the UFL.

UFL is a training ground for future Azkals and with the quality of play that was witnessed last Sunday, the future of Philippine football is very promising.

My Rule of Thumb on Azkals vs. UFL All Star: THUMBS UP.

Follow me on Twitter: www.twitter.com/joceldeguzman

Recycled Poetry: Old man & a cradle

There, in a darkened little room

An old man racks an empty wooden cradle while

Humming an out of tune lullaby

To calm his crying soul

His memory is slowly fading

Like the orange sunset every afternoon

He can only remember the

Sad thoughts of an absurd existence

And the illusion of a meaningful life.

He weeps as he struggles to recollect

In his dying days

The only happy moments he once had

When he was still being comforted

By the warmth of that old cradle

– Jocel de Guzman

April 12, 2002

Follow me on Twitter: www.twitter.com/joceldeguzman