Author Archives: Edel V. Cayetano

About Edel V. Cayetano

Edel Cayetano tells stories for a living, but she thrives on being a wife and hands-on mom to her 1-year old daughter. She loves reading, watching indie films, hoarding notebooks and "believing in as many as six impossible things before breakfast."

Photo by delphic courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

How to prepare for La Niña

Thursday, 23 June 2016 | Written by
Photo by delphic courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.
Photo by delphic courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

Photo by delphic courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

As we near the end of June, rains are already becoming more frequent than usual and while most of us can only be thankful for the bit of cool amidst the sweltering heat, we can already expect the adverse effects of La Niña come the second half of the year.

Read on for ideas on how you could prepare for the El Niño’s vicious twin.

El Niño weakens, La Niña beckons

According to Accuweather online, La Niña, which is the direct opposite of El Niño, happens when sea surface temperatures in the central Pacific Ocean drop to lower-than-normal levels. The cooling of this area of water near the equator usually unfolds during the second half of the year and yields impacts around the globe.

With some 19 typhoons expected to hit the country from July to October and the 75 percent possibility that La Niña may well extend to the first quarter of 2017, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) has advised the public to gear up for heavy rains when the weather phenomenon sets in.

La Niña is set to affect water resources, food, agriculture, health and the environment. Extreme events like floods and landslides have also been associated with La Niña.

Senator Loren Legarda, chair of the Senate committees on climate change and finance, has urged the government to immediately and effectively gear up for the said weather phenomenon by utilizing funds for disaster preparedness and climate adaptation.

Legarda also emphasized that communities in land-slide prone areas should already have been relocated not only because of the impending La Niña but because these areas should not be inhabited in the first place.

Other steps that government agencies should have started undertaking by now to avoid flooding include desilting and cleaning of rivers, canals and drainage systems and tree planting.

Likewise, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has also called for LGUs to coordinate closely with their respective Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Councils to prepare a La Niña Action plan, as well as implement the early preparedness actions listed in the Operation Listo Manuals which cite disaster preparedness minimum standards before, during and after a disaster.

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has also begun preparing for the effects of La Niña in Metro Manila by focusing on the 85 flood-prone areas in the metro – clearing waterways and making sure that all of its flood pumping stations are working, said MMDA Chairman Emerson Carlos.

Farmers from all over the country have also been advised to undertake preparatory measures for La Niña after the historic, prolonged drought brought by El Niño. For one, farmers in Pangasinan were encouraged to use “smart” varieties of palay “such as the submarine and floating types,” said provincial agriculturist Dalisay Moya. Irrigation canals should also be closely monitored.

Preparing for La Niña

As the government strives to do its part in preparing for La Niña, you too should take an active role in planning ahead in order to minimize losses in your home and more importantly, ensure your family’s safety. Here are some ideas on how you could do so:

  • Safeguard your possessions. Gather all important documents in a waterproof bag for easy retrieval. Include a copy of your insurance policies with your agent’s contact information, a household inventory that keeps record of all major household items and valuables and copies of all other critical documents.
  • Prepare your house. Make sure your water pump is working properly (you may also install a battery-operated back-up just in case). Clear debris from gutters, raise your electrical components and water heaters at least 12 inches above your home’s projected flood elevation, and move furniture, valuables and important documents to a safe place. Should you be forced to leave your home, switch off your electricity supply.
  • Devise a family emergency plan. Create a safety kit with drinking water, canned food, first aid, blankets, a radio, a flashlight and a copy of emergency telephone numbers. Plan and practice a flood evacuation route with your family and find out safe routes from home, work and school that are o higher ground.
  • Be attuned to your inner Macgyver. Identify things that float which can be used to assist you in your evacuation and prepare ropes which can be tied around the waist of children to prevent them from being separated from you.

Everybody is at risk. Floods can occur almost anywhere so it is best to always be on guard and to maintain presence of mind when the dreaded thing happens.

*Sources: Floodsmart, News Straits Times

rodrigo_duterte

Dealing with Digong (Part 2 of 2)

Wednesday, 15 June 2016 | Written by
rodrigo_duterte

Continued from “Rodrigo Duterte and his love-hate relationship with the media Part 1

rodrigo_duterte

Part 2 of Rodrigo Duterte and his love-hate relationship with the media

A second chance?

While Duterte’s critics accuse him of turning on the fourth estate with his media boycott (which already started during his thanksgiving party last June 3), Senate President Franklin Drilon has expressed confidence that the incoming president will come around in time, saying both need each other for the sake of democracy.

Senators Sonny Angara and Tito Sotto were also optimistic that Duterte’s decision to not grant media interviews until the end of his term will come to pass, citing how previous presidents rarely gave regular press conferences anyway, with their spokespersons usually taking care of the media’s concerns. Angara also said that this might even enable the president to focus more on his duties, since it would be difficult if press cons consumed most of his time.

Dealing with Digong

While everyone awaits the time that Duterte will change his mind, Vincent Lazatin of Media Nation and Transparency and Accountability Network (TAN) has some useful insights for the media when it comes to dealing with Duterte.

In an article by Jodesz Gavilan of the Rappler, Lazatin challenges journalists to cover Duterte differently and talk about the substance of what he’s trying to say, instead of reporting how he cusses. He says that by dropping the curses in stories, media consumers can focus on the real discussion of his plans, issues and policies that come with being a president.

“What we need are follow-up questions like he says he’s going to shut down Congress, how is he going to do that?” Lazatin pointed out. He also calls for getting over the fact that he’s foul-mouthed and deciding against printing that since it does not really add to the discussion.

Another way to cover Duterte, according to Lazatin, is by treating him as a “troll who says things just to provoke.” Possibly a deliberate strategy by the incoming president whenever he doesn’t want to answer a question, this could be handled by staying on track on the topics a journalist wants to cover. Hold him accountable and pin him down categorically on policies, positions on issues, among others.

And while people within Duterte’s circle have advised the media to be more discerning about the former’s statements, Lazatin insists that perhaps the incoming president should be more careful as the “words coming from the mouth of a president are gold.” The media, and the public in general, will hold him accountable for what he says, and leaving the public to decide whether or not a statement was said in jest is problematic.

Like it or not, the nation’s “relationship” with Rodrigo Roa Duterte will officially begin in a matter of days and will last for six years. It will not be without its hurdles, for sure, but here’s to hoping that these challenges will put the country back on its feet. In the mean time, let’s keep watch while Digong’s LQ with the media ensues and hopefully ends as in a teleserye.

Screen shot from GMA News' interview with Rodrigo Duterte on YouTube. Public domain.

Rodrigo Duterte and his love-hate relationship with the media (Part 1 of 2)

Wednesday, 15 June 2016 | Written by
Screen shot from GMA News' interview with Rodrigo Duterte on YouTube. Public domain.

 

Screen shot from GMA News' interview with Rodrigo Duterte on YouTube. Public domain.

Screen shot from GMA News’ interview with Rodrigo Duterte on YouTube. Public domain.

There is no such thing as bad publicity, and no phenomenon would better demonstrate this than the landslide victory of incoming president Rodrigo Roa Duterte. A polarizing character, a “love-him-hate-him” icon in Philippine politics, he has shown his immense understanding of the power of media and has definitely used it to his advantage, much to the epic dismay of his political rivals.

Digong and his image: Truth or strategy?

Hard-hitting. Loquacious. Foul-mouthed. Irreverent. These are just some adjectives that journalists have used in describing Digong. His statements, often controversial, have made headlines in the dailies, along with his bleeped expletives. Crooks, pimps, armed oppressors, corrupt politicians – fuck them all. From lashing out his frustration over the country’s maladies to complimenting beautiful women, Duterte cusses, and does so generously if he wants to. But after everything is said and done, who is Rodrigo Duterte, really?

In a press conference last April, Duterte tried to explain why he talks the way he does. In a report by Trisha Macas of GMA News, the Davao Mayor said he is actually taking the “posture of a radical” when speaking in a brutally frank manner to challenge the ruling class and public officials who seem to only care for the elite. He admits to deliberately being foul-mouthed to test the elite in the country, to test the waters of radicalism. Furthermore, he says his vulgarity is directed towards writers who could be bribed and would “slant his statements.” He even castigated the media as he told them “Don’t fuck with me.” Recently, his remark that journalists who took bribes and engaged in corrupt activities deserved to die drew criticism from the public and even United Nations Chief Ban Ki-moon. Duterte, who launched a profanity-laced tirade against the UN, could not care any less.

While Duterte’s critics could go on all day about all the wrong things that come out of his mouth, some of his supporters see his irreverent image as a strategy, which his former running mate, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, has admitted. In an article written by Retired Mayor General Romeo Poquiz in his Facebook account, he opined about the “most brilliant strategy of Mayor Rodrigo Duterte,” even calling the incoming president a “masterful tactician and strategist.” According to Poquiz, the Duterte apparently had an opening, middlegame and endgame strategy in his journey towards becoming the Philippines’ first Mindanaoan President. For a memorable opening, there was the non-filing of his candidacy after the deadline and later substitution (which had everybody in suspense). For his middlegame, he transformed his weakness of having no money and machinery into strength. Poquiz writes:

“He pokes fun and sometimes ridicules, double-talks, uses sarcasm, hyperbole, pun and other figures of speech. Cursing is one of his weaknesses but why do people get more excited every time he curses? He uses feints and subterfuges and lures and traps the enemy.” Moreover, this kind of behavior, usually hidden by politicians who want to appear flawless and decent, has ironically become a breath of fresh air for some. Instead of taking it against Duterte, they have viewed it as a gesture of vulnerability, of honesty, of showing one’s true self. Flawed, yes, but human and real, nonetheless – unlike the imagined and perfect public servant who doesn’t exist.

When it comes to differentiating the table image versus the real Rodrigo Duterte, one’s guess can only be as good as anyone else’s. What’s indisputable though is that Digong, with all his idealisms and profanities, made for interesting news on all media platforms, hence gaining extensive media attention and free airtime (while his rivals paid for theirs), hence reaching out to more people and eventually winning the June 2016 elections. No wonder, Filipino political expert Julio Teehankee has noted this as “the emergence of a maverick president that is tailor-fitted for reality TV and the social media.”

A love affair turns sour

Digong, before his media boycott, used to be gracious with TV appearances. He once danced with locals in Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho, enjoyed a sumptuous serving of halo-halo and toured Kris Aquino around Davao for her now-defunct morning show and even exchanged witty remarks with Vice Ganda. He was also generous with his time during press conferences – entertaining every question and even going beyond an hour or two until journalists are satisfied with what they have. He was dubbed the #NoFilter President, and the press always had more than a handful of quotes to include in their stories.

For its part, the media covered Duterte extensively – from his controversial statements, to giving a glimpse of his platforms and advocacies, to showing him crying in front of his mother’s tombstone as he was pulling away from his presidential rivals by the millions in the COMELEC’s partial and unofficial vote count.

Then the rape joke happened. And after that, him wolf-whistling GMA reporter Mariz Umali. Then his remark that corrupt journalists are not exempted from assassinations taken to mean the same thing as encouraging extra-judicial killings. And then the international press group’s Reporters Without Borders (RWB) call to journalists to boycott the Mayor’s news briefings that made him decide to shun the media so there would be “no talk, no mistake.”

Sorry ha, talagang ano… boycott talaga (I’m sorry but it would really be a boycott),” Duterte said in an interview aired on TV5. “Ayoko na (I don’t want to do it anymore). Ang interview maraming mali, maraming criticisms (An interview has many mistakes and criticisms). No interview, no criticism. No wrong statement, no nothing. I’ll shut up, ayoko na talaga (I really don’t want to do it anymore),” Duterte added.

To be continued in Part 2.

 

 

Photo courtesy of Culture Club's Facebook page.

Shows and concerts to watch out for this June

Thursday, 9 June 2016 | Written by
Photo courtesy of Culture Club's Facebook page.

Mark your calendars, save up and brace yourselves for spectacular shows and breath-taking moments this May!

Mitoy Yonting and the Draybers

June 9, 10pm / Bar 360, Resorts World Manila

Rock your socks off to the Draybers’ signature sound: classic rock music inspired by Survivor, Queen, Journey, Air Supply and other Pinoy rock legends. Prepare your song requests too because the band has become infamous for starting a gig without a prepared set list to give way to what their audience wants to hear!

Catch their frenetic performances on June 9, 13, 14 and 16 at Bar 360, Resorts World Manila. 

Photo courtesy of PPO's Facebook page.

Photo courtesy of PPO’s Facebook page.

Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra: Send-Off Concert

June 10, 8:30pm / CCP Main Theater

The country’s leading symphony orchestra will be featured in a send-off concert at the Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater) before they leave for the United States to perform at New York’s Carnegie Hall on June 18.

The Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra (PPO) is the first Filipino orchestra to perform in the prestigious Carnegie Hall in the US. Grab the chance to watch them live as they play some of the pieces in their Carnegie concert such as Dmitri Shostakovich’s Festive Overture, op.96, Jean Sibelius’ Violin Concerto in D minor and other works by Filipino composers.

Hajji Alejandro in KILABOT FoREDver

June 10, 8:30pm / Music Museum

Perhaps alluding to his image of being a campus heartthrob during his prime, the Friday night show will feature iconic OPM crooner Hajji Alejandro at the Music Museum. His daughter, Rachel Alejandro, will his guest performer.

Photo courtesy of Kenny Wizz' Facebook page.

Photo courtesy of Kenny Wizz’ Facebook page.

King of Pop featuring Kenny Wizz

June 11, 8pm / The Theater at Solaire Resort and Casino

Find out why Kenny Wizz has been acclaimed as the best Michael Jackson tribute artist as you watch him transform into the King of Pop while performing some of the iconic singer’s well-loved classics.

The Best of Broadway featuring The Citrus Singers from Hollywood

June 11, 8pm / CCP Main Theater

If you’re a fan of Broadway, then this one’s definitely for you! The Best of Broadway offers a song-and-dance revue of the greatest Broadway musicals, past and present from classics during Irving Berlin’s time to this year’s Tony winners. Catch it this Saturday at the Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo at the CCP Main Theater.

BlesstheFall Live in Manila

June 13 / SM Skydome

The American metalcore quintet returns for their first solo show since rocking everyone’s socks off at the PULP Summer Slam 12: The Apostles four years ago. Dare to lose yourself to the band’s heavy breakdowns and emotionally-charged lyrics in a night of organized chaos on June 13.

Photo courtesy of Rak of Aegis' Facebook page.

Photo courtesy of Rak of Aegis’ Facebook page.

Rak of Aegis 5.0

June 17 to 28 / PETA Theater Center

It’s going it be an extraordinary spectacle of rain, flood and vocal prowess as PETA’s hit comedy musical Rak of Aegis makes it 5th comeback since its opening on 2014. The multi-awarded musical has produced a record-breaking 206 shows – a huge accomplishment in Philippine theater.

Godspell

June 17 to 26 / Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati

Godspell, which takes its inspiration from the Gospel of Matthew, is a rock musical that debuted in 1971 that has since won hearts and awards with its captivating music. The show promises rousing production numbers that narrates the parables of Jesus through games, storytelling techniques and a dash of humor.

Photo courtesy of Culture Club's Facebook page.

Photo courtesy of Culture Club’s Facebook page.

Culture Club featuring Boy George Live in Manila

June 18 / Smart Araneta Coliseum

Boy George reunites with his former band from the 80’s, the Culture Club, in a one-night only concert on June 18 at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Boy George quips that performing together again is like rewriting the story of Culture Club and unfolding a new chapter in the band’s history with their fans and supporters.

Brian McKnight: “Better.” 2K16 Tour Live in Manila

June 20, 8pm / Kia Theater

Multi-awarded RnB artist Brian McKnight will be serenading fans with his greatest hits such as “Back at One,” “6, 8, 12,” and “One Last Cry” on June 10 at the Kia Theater.

Dance.MNL: The Philippine International Dance Festival

June 21 to 26 / CCP and Aliw Theater

Witness a convergence of the best in Filipino ballet, modern and contemporary dance in a two-week festival and workshop series at the Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (Little Theater) at the CCP.

Screenshot courtesy of YouTube.

Screenshot courtesy of YouTube.

Rebuild with Rex Navarrete and Comedy Manila

June 22, 7:30pm / Music Museum

You’re in for some full-bellied laughs as internationally acclaimed Fil-Am funny man Rex Navarrete and premier homegrown laugh-a-minute Crew Comedy Manila stages an unforgettable show on June 22.

The show is a joint project with the Rotary Club of Sta. Mesa, Quezon City for the benefit of the National Children’s Hospital.

Tribute to the Masters: Anne Marie Caldoza, piano

June 22, 7pm / Ayala Museum

Multi-awarded young pianist Anne Marie Caldoza stages her professional debut in “Tribute to Masters and Prodigies” on June 22 at the Ayala Museum. Caldoza, who is a graduate of the prestigious Longy School of Music of Bard College in Cambridge, Massachussetts, will be performing the music of Beethoven, Shapir, Handel and Rachmaninoff.

Reverie: A Classical Guitar Concert feat. Sachicko Miyashita

June 23 / Ayala Museum

Understand what Ogaku Gendai meant with “intellect, emotion and will balanced on a very high level” as Japanese classical guitarist Sachiko Miyashita unleashes her inner virtuoso on June 23 with special guests, Filipino classical Contemporary guitar trio Triple Fret.

Green Day’s American Idiot

June 24 to July 10, 8pm / Globe Iconic Store

Let the high-octane stage adaptation of Green Day’s Grammy Award-winning album, ‘American Idiot,’ take you where bold social messages are punctuated in rock-out, anthemic songs.

MTV Music Evolution Manila 2016 Featuring One Republic

June 24 / Mall of Asia Concert Grounds

OneRepublic, Pinoy popstar royalty Sarah Geronimo, James Reid and Nadine Lustre – there’s definitely a lot to be excited about MTV Music Evolution Manila! The one-night only live music event is expected to be a celebration of pop music like never before – a showcase of iconic and contemporary international artists as well as the hottest acts in the local music scene on a single stage.

Virgin Labfest 12 (Untried, Untested, and Unstaged Plays)

June 29 to July 17 / CCP Studio Theater

Dubbed the festival of “untried, untested and unstaged one-act plays,” the 2016 Virgin Labfest (VLF) will feature 12 new masterpieces from daring playwrights with stories to tell. The themes of the VLF plays are as varied as the playwrights themselves (30 to be exact), and range from the universal subjects of family, love and longing and even searing social commentaries.

Showbiz roundup May

Showbiz round-up: Who and what generated most buzz this month

Tuesday, 31 May 2016 | Written by
Showbiz roundup May
Showbiz roundup May

Showbiz roundup: Jaclyn Jose wins in Cannes; Paul Jake and Kaye get engaged; Mariel Rodriguez announces pregnancy; Baste Duterte is certified social media heartthrob. (Photos from their Instagram accounts, collage by the author.)

Been off the showbiz radar lately? Catch up and read about celebrities and happenings that generated the most buzz in Pinoy showbiz during the month of May.

Jaclyn Jose wins Best Actress at Cannes

Jaclyn Jose brought pride and glory to the country when she was named best actress at this year’s Cannes film festival for her role in Brillante Mendoza’s opus, “Ma’ Rosa.”

In her speech, she thanked the jury, saluted Filipinos and paid tribute to her director (Mendoza) “whose instructions (she) simply followed.” Jose also held her daughter’s hand, Andi Eigenmann throughout her speech – a gesture that moved jury member and Hollywood actress Kirsten Dunst.

The film is about Ma’ Rosa – a poor stall holder in Manila who sells drugs with her husband to provide for their family. After the couple gets arrested, their children do everything they can to buy their parents’ freedom from corrupt policemen.

The closing ceremony of the 69th Cannes Film Festival took place last May 23 in Cannes. Jose is the first Pinay actress to receive the award.

 

Sharon Cuneta replaces Sarah G. on ‘The Voice PH’

Sharon Cuneta joins Lea Salonga and Bamboo as one of the coaches in ‘The Voice PH’ – replacing Sarah Geronimo who temporarily took a break from the show.

According to the Mega star, she’s been enjoying working with the two and she’s grateful for their chemistry.

Sharon shares that she hopes the new ‘The Voice’ champ will come from her team.

Meanwhile, Lea Salonga requested the Popsters (how Sarah Geronimo’s fans call themselves) to avoid sending negative vibes to the show after they cry foul over the latter’s replacement through Twitter. She clarified that it was Sarah’s decision to not be a part of the show this season.

The Voice PH premiered last May 28 on ABS-CBN.

 

 

Paul Jake and Kaye Abad are engaged!

Kaye Abad’s dream came true as Paul Jake Castillo, her boyfriend of two years, popped the question to her on her 34th birthday last May 17.

In a gathering with family and friends at Bellevue Hotel in Alabang, the clueless Kaye became emotional as Paul Jake went down on one knee and asked her to be his wife.

In a video captured by Nice Print Photography, Paul Jake told Kaye how they started as friends and eventually turned into partners-in-crime, best friends until they became a couple. Finally, he said he wanted to “seal it” by asking her to marry him. Kaye, overcome with happy tears, only managed to give a nod.

Among the couple’s showbiz friends who took to social media in congratulating them were siblings John and Camille Prats.

Speaking of new beginnings…

 

 

Mariel Rodriguez is pregnant for the third time

Mariel Rodriguez confirms being pregnant with husband Robin Padillas’s child on noontime show “It’s Showtime” last May 21.

The Showtime host, who is now on her second trimester, shares how she feels “this (could be) it,” since it’s her longest pregnancy. Initially, she was in denial after finding out she was pregnant, but was happy and excited for the blessing. She waited until getting past the first trimester before announcing the news.

In a press conference for a hotel they were endorsing, Robin Padilla revealed how it has been a difficult process for her wife and how he worried constantly about her. Mariel has to inject heparin to regulate her antibodies which keep attacking her baby (the same reason for her past miscarriages) and take insulin to treat her gestational diabetes.

Despite the challenges and sacrifices, the couple are more than excited for their baby, who they will name Maria if it turns out to be a girl, or Fernando if it’s a boy. 

Now, since we’re talking about babies…

 

Vicki Belo and Hayden Kho present baby Scarlet Snow to the public

Photo courtesy of Hayden Kho's Instagram account.

Photo courtesy of Hayden Kho’s Instagram account.

Engaged couple Hayden Kho and Vicki Belo made waves on social media when they posted photos of their 1 year-old baby, Scarlet Snow, on the photo-sharing site Instagram.

Captioning a photo of himself with their baby, Hayden said fatherhood changed him completely. He also described Scarlet Snow as his “lifelong inspiration” with Vicki Belo.

Belo, on her part, said Scarlet was the “sunshine” of their lives, having affected her life and Hayden’s “in such a positive way.”

In an interview with Bandila’s MJ Felipe on May 18, Belo, 63, clarified that Scarlet Snow is ‘100 percent’ her biological daughter with Hayden Kho, 36.

Baby Scarlet was conceived through in vitro fertilization (IVF), a medical procedure wherein an egg cell is retrieved from the biological mother’s ovaries to be fertilized with the sperm cell of the biological father in a laboratory dish. The fertilized egg is then implanted to the uterus of a surrogate mother who gives birth to the baby.

Belo also revealed that they personally met Scarlet’s American-Mexican surrogate mother and visited her family to be assured that they were a happy family and that they ate well. They also stayed with them during the fifth month of the pregnancy and for one month awaiting Scarlet’s birth.

Belo, who has been in an 11-year relationship with Kho, shared that they decided to have a baby when they realized they wanted to stay together for life. She admitted that it has always been her concern that they could not have a family, but Hayden would always reassure her that he was willing to be with her with or without a child. When they decided to have a child, they thought of surrogacy.

From one instant celebrity, let’s talk about…

 

 

New viral stars: Baste Duterte, Badjao Girl and “Gwapong jeepney dri-bae ng Tagaytay”

Joining the ranks of people who went viral online are incoming President Rody Duterte’s son, Sebastian Duterte, Rita Gabiola a.k.a. “Badjao Girl” and Angelo Booc – a good-looking jeepney driver in Tagaytay.

Sebastian “Baste” Duterte has become a certified (albeit reluctant) social media heartthrob, receiving marriage and baby daddy ‘proposals’ from his fans on Facebook. A video where he gave virtual kisses to his fans through his friend’s Facebook live feed had netizens swooning over his boyish charm.

Meanwhile, addressing his fans who were curious as to what type of beauty appeals to him, he posted a viral photo of Rita Gabiola, a.k.a “Badjao Girl.”

Badjao girlThe viral photo shows Gabiola begging for food and coins while carrying a younger sibling amidst the Pahiyas Festival last May 15. The snapshot, where Gabiola was described as a “beauty slayer,” was taken and uploaded by Topher Quinto on his Facebook account.

As Gabiola’s photo went viral, support from fans immediately poured in. Lucena City Mayor Roderick Alcala said he would send her to school. “Rated K” and the Lingkod Kapamilya Foundation also gave her a scholarship. She dreams of being a teacher someday.

Gabiola’s photo shoot, where ‘Rated K’ gave her a makeover, also went viral last weekend.

Meanwhile, another good-looking driver from Tagaytay also won the hearts of netizens.

Angelo BoocAccording to a report by Vicky Morales on 24 Oras, the new social media heartthrob is 22-year-old Angelo Booc. He began as a carwash boy and messenger before becoming a jeepney driver. According to the report, some of his admirers would travel all the way to Tagaytay just to get a ride with the young lad.

Booc said he was surprised that his photo (taken without his knowledge) went viral but he’s happy people liked it. He said he didn’t expect someone would take a photo of him, upload it on social media and that people would like it. He also invited people to visit Tagaytay because it’s fun there.

 

*All photos are from Facebook.

"Peekaboo!" by Josh Liba. Photo courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

How to pick toys that would encourage your child’s speech development

Monday, 14 March 2016 | Written by
"Peekaboo!" by Josh Liba. Photo courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.
"Peekaboo!" by Josh Liba. Photo courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

“Peekaboo!” by Josh Liba. Photo courtesy of Flickr. Used under Creative Commons license.

As a mother to an 18-month old baby, I’m constantly concerned whether I’m raising my kid in the best way possible, particularly by helping her ease through the transition from one developmental milestone to another. And being a writer by profession, I guess being concerned with my child’s speech development doesn’t come as a surprise.

This concern prompted me to start reading about the subject, and during my Google searches, I came across an article by speech language pathologist Sherry Artemenko In it, she points out that early language proficiency is closely linked with later performance in school – reading, writing and critical thinking skills – and influences emotional, cognitive and social growth. She further explains that from a baby’s first coo, a toddler’s first words, a preschooler’s little sentences to storytelling, children progress in their ability to express feelings, successfully connect in social situations, solve problems and make good decisions.

With that being said, what better place to start than with toys, books and games that your child is exposed to, right?

Artemenko seemed to be reading the minds of moms like me when she posed these questions: How do parents sort through this huge supply of kids’ toys? Who do we listen to? Who are the experts? How do you discern between marketing hype and the truth?

In order to guide you in your search for the best toys that encourage speech and language development, here are some points to consider from speech pathologists all over the Internet.

  1. The best toys for early speech and language development set the stage for language-rich play in meaningful context.

Focus on toys that inspire children not just to memorize and imitate words but to use those words functionally in a variety of ways, such as requesting, showing, sharing, commenting, role play, problem solving, asking for help and making plans – recommends speech pathologist, mom and , Twodaloo blogger Stephanie.

  1. Skip the batteries.

If the toy requires batteries, either ditch the toy altogether or take the batteries out. For example, a cute farm set may be cute but it runs on batteries so that it can make noises. Hanen-certified speech pathologist Katie Yeh emphasizes that you don’t need the barn to make noises – you want your CHILD to make the noises!

  1. Choose open-ended and versatile toys.

Let your child play with toys that can be used in different ways overtime, those that have no beginning, middle or end. Lean more towards basic and traditional toys – ones that allow your child to practice their creative freedom and imagination. Opt for sturdy and well-made ones too!

Here are some examples of open ended, basic toys:

  • Wooden blocks
  • Legos
  • Cars, trucks, transportation toys (Do they make noise? Off with the batteries!)
  • Simple train tracks and trains
  • Play kitchen and play food
  • Farm set or animal sets
  • Doll house
  • Play dough
  • Sensory table
  • Dress up clothes
  • Tool set
  • Tea set
  • Baby doll/baby blanket
  • Art
  1. Don’t worry about gender

Katie Yeh suggests that you don’t stick to gender specific toys when picking toys for your child. Let your girls play with trucks and trains and your boys play with toy kitchens and baby dolls. She cites a research on the impact of specific toys on play that explains how the highest-scoring toys stimulated problem solving, social interaction and creative expression in both boys. Try to leave your previous conceptions about what inspires male and female play at the door, and objectively observe toy effects to maximize the benefits your child can get from all sorts of play materials.

  1. Say no to SCLANS or “educational” toys

Stay away from the aisle that houses toys that claim to be educational, “teach the ABCs,” “teach colors and numbers” and so on. These are what Kim from Little Stories call SCLANS (Shapes, Colors, Letters and NumberS) and these are what you ought to avoid if you have a little one in the early stages of communication development. (Ouch, I’m guilty of this) Your child don’t need these types of toys, as they tend to do all the “doing” with music and flashing lights.

  1. Use toys that get your kid moving

Whether indoors or outdoors, physical activity is crucial for your child. Make forts and tunnels (you can even fancy them out of huge cardboard boxes!), have fun with ride-on toys or just play ball! Another great idea would be to go outside and explore the park nearest you!

  1. Less is more

When we’re too in love with our kids, we tend to splurge on too many toys thinking we’re giving what’s best for them. But Yeh explains that the truth is less is more. “Your child does NOT need toys upon toys! In fact, too many toys can actually be a big negative,” she says. Children easily get overwhelmed with too many toys and end up shifting quickly from one toy to another which can actually limit their play and language opportunities.

But wait, don’t throw away your child’s toys just yet! You may still keep them, but do consider a toy rotation to allow your child enough opportunities for solid and meaningful play with each.

  1. The best toys could not be “toys” at all

Sometimes, the BEST toys are not “real” toys at all! Use pots, pans, wooden spoons, cardboard boxes, make forts out of blankets and pillows and run wild with your imagination!

My favorite take-away from my readings, however, is this: sometimes WE are the best toy for our children. Sing nursery rhymes together. Speak in a funny voice. Tell lots of stories. Play hide and seek. Whatever you do, be creative in entertaining and educating your kid and who knows, she might just reward you with words and phrases before you know it!

Being a parent can be overwhelming, but it brings into your life a kind of joy and meaning that enriches you in boundless ways. (Photo owned by the author)

Keeping up with your baby’s milestones from 1 to 2 years old

Monday, 29 February 2016 | Written by
Being a parent can be overwhelming, but it brings into your life a kind of joy and meaning that enriches you in boundless ways. (Photo owned by the author)
Being a parent can be overwhelming, but it brings into your life a kind of joy and meaning that enriches you in boundless ways. (Photo owned by the author)

Being a parent can be overwhelming, but it brings into your life a kind of joy and meaning that enriches you in boundless ways. (Photo owned by the author)

Looking at my daughter who turns two in a few months, I can’t help thinking: where did all those months go? Yesterday, we were just looking at her smiling vaguely from an ultrasound photo and now, she’s a bundle of light, energy and crazy all rolled into one. Time does fly fast, especially when you’re raising a child.

Before I get too sentimental reminiscing about special moments with my baby, let’s go over some of the most awaited developmental milestones of your precious one, and how you can catch your breath while keeping up with them.

Disclaimer: As you read about what milestones your baby s likely to achieve this year, remember that this is only a guideline. Each child is unique and develops at her own pace.

Your baby’s first year

While babies develop at their own pace, there are certain tasks that every child should be able to do by a certain age. These tasks fall under five categories: 1) gross motor skills (using large groups of muscles to sit, stand, walk, run, etc.), 2) fine motor skills (using hands to be able to eat, draw, dress, play, write), 3) language skills (speaking, using body language, communicating and comprehending what other say), 4) thinking skills (including learning, understanding, problem-solving, reasoning and remembering) and 5) social (interacting with others and responding to other people’s feelings).

1 to 6 months

Caring for a newborn baby may be a blur of feeding, changing nappies, putting her to sleep and responding to her cries, but all these become worth it as you watch your baby reaching developmental milestones. These may include:

  • Smiling at the sound of your voice and following you with her eyes as you move around a room
  • Raising her head and chest during tummy time
  • Grasping objects
  • Smiling at other people
  • Babbling, laughing and imitating sounds and even your facial expressions
  • Holding her head steadily
  • Rolling back to stomach and stomach to back
  • Constantly improving hand-eye coordination

How to keep up: Contrary to what some people believe, there is no such thing as spoiling a baby in her first few months! Responding to your child promptly reinforces love and security, so don’t worry about spoiling your tot.

Include tummy time in her daily routine so she can practice her new skills and strengthen her muscles. Encourage her with toys and safe objects that she may reach for, grab and explore.

Smother your baby with lots of loving attention. Talk to her throughout the day, describing what you’re doing and naming familiar objects. Read books together, play and cuddle as much as you can.

7 months to 12 months

With every smile and coo, your little one continues to grab hold of your heart with such intensity – and find yourself falling more deeply in love with her everyday. Your life becomes more colorful, just as she starts seeing the world in full color now. You do the happy dance as you find your baby:

  • Responding to her own name
  • Finding partially hidden objects and enjoying games of peekaboo
  • Being able to sit without support
  • Crawling and babbling
  • Walking with or without support
  • Saying at least one word and enjoying imitating people
  • Using a raking grasp to pull objects closer, holding and moving toys from one hand to another
  • Watching herself in a mirror and being amused at her own reflection
  • Eating solid food and enjoying its different tastes and textures

How to keep up: Your baby thrives on her interactions with you, so do your best to integrate play into everything do with her. Lavish her with smiles and hugs and reply when she babbles to encourage her communication skills.

Make room for a variety of age-appropriate toys and household objects (such as wooden spoons and cartons) for her to explore.

If a routine for sleeping, feeding and playtime has not yet been established, work on coming up with one. You may also want to make sure that your home is childproof to keep her environment safe for exploring.

Between 1 to 2 years old

Congratulations! You have survived your baby’s first year and are now off to enjoying more milestones with your wide-eyed little tyke. Be ready to take in these milestones at this stage:

  • Following simple commands, first when the adult speaks and gestures, then later on with words alone
  • Fetching objects when asked
  • Pointing to a few body parts when asked
  • Pointing to interesting objects or events to get you to look at them too
  • Bringing things to show to you and pointing to some so you will name them
  • Naming a few common objects and pictures when asked or prompted
  • Enjoying pretending (for example, pretend cooking). Your child may also use gestures and words with you or with a favorite stuffed animal or doll.
  • Learning about 1 new word every week between 18 months to 24 months.

How to keep up: Make sure to set aside quantity and quality time with your child, as your presence matters to her now more than ever. Don’t hesitate to unleash your inner child: play, get silly, sing, dance and read together as much as you can. Always be encouraging yet understanding of your kid when needed. Expose your little adventurer to the world and give her plenty of opportunities to explore nature and mingle with kids her age and other people.

Whatever you do, don’t miss out on your child’s precious first few years. It’s going to be the foundation of your relationship that’s yet to unfold in the future and besides, you can never make enough happy memories. Being a parent can be overwhelming, but it brings into your life an incomparable kind of joy and meaning that will enrich you in ways indescribable.

JaDine

(Showbiz round-up) Madonna’s ‘Rebel Heart’ Manila concert, a hit; ‘On The Wings of Love’ ends on a high note

Sunday, 28 February 2016 | Written by
JaDine
Photo screenshot courtesy of user @iamredboi's Instagram account

Photo screenshot courtesy of user @iamredboi’s Instagram account

“Queen of Pop” Madonna successfully held her 3-day concert, ‘Rebel Heart Tour,’ on February 24 to 26 at the SM Mall of Asia Concert Grounds.

“Visually dazzling, memorable and full of energy,” as The Rappler described it, the concert paid witness to surprises and performances that only the iconic superstar could deliver.

Defiant and unapologetic, Madonna delivered show-stopping performances that made her fans go gaga. She arrived onstage in a glittering cage as she opened the show with ‘Iconic.’ She also paid tribute to the People Power Revolution which was celebrated on the second day of her concert, following it with a heartfelt performance of the anthemic “Crazy for You” to which fans happily sang along.

Madonna showed that she did her homework when she referenced to how Filipinos fought for their freedom 30 years ago, further describing it as “a revolution of love… and that is what the rebel heart fights for.”

Madonna also threw a bouquet to a lucky fan while she sang ‘Like a Virgin’. In the tailend of the grand spectacle, she plucked another lucky female fan to dance with her during “Unapologetic Bitch.” This fan received a banana as a “prize.”

Madonna drew controversy, though, when she draped herself with the Philippine flag while performing “Holiday” for her encore. In the past, she has also wrapped herself in the flags of Hong Kong and Canada without drawing outrage or penalties. She caused a stir, though, when she did the same with an old Kuomintang flag in Taiwan.

The Queen of Pop also took time to visit orphans and street children seeking refuge at Bahay Tuluyan days before her concert.

 

‘On The Wings of Love’ ends on a high note

Photo screenshot courtesy of Nice Print Photo's Instagram account

Photo screenshot courtesy of Nice Print Photo’s Instagram account

Clark and Leah get their happily-ever-after as ABS-CBN’s “On the Wings of Love” (OTWOL) aired its finale on Friday, February 26.

Dubbed #OTWOLTheLastFlight, the finale showed Clark (James Reid) and Lea (Nadine Lustre) exchanging their ‘I Dos’ in a beautiful wedding – a stark contrast to their first one, a civil wedding which was done out of necessity.

Fans, who call themselves OTWOListas, watched the finale of the top-rating TV series at the Ynares Sports Complex in Antipolo City. After the newlyweds walked the aisle and bade goodbye at the reception, the love team-turned-real-life-couple made a special appearance at the stadium much to everyone’s delight, blurring the lines of remaining in character and being drawn to each other for real. The two looked exquisite and all over each other as they wore the same outfits they had on during the finale.

After performing a duet of the series’s theme song, “On The Wings Of Love,” JaDine shared a kiss.

The pair thanked their fans for supporting their show which turned out to be “a rollercoaster ride,” as Lustre described it.

The final episode, which became a trending topic on Twitter with some 4 million views, was aired simultaneously in Middle East, Europe, Japan, Asia Pacific, Australia, Canada and US via The Filipino Channel (TFC), as well as its live streaming counterpart.

Some of the highlights of the finale episode include the revelation that the Clark and Lea have actually met when they were little, the wedding preparations beautifully set to their friend Rico’s (Jose Miguel Severo) love poem titled ’10 Bagay na Naturo Sa Akin Ng Pag-ibig,’ the touching wedding vows (which Director Antonette Jadaone revealed to be co-written by James Reid himself), a glimpse of their honeymoon and married life in San Francisco.

The romantic comedy series first aired on August 10, 2015 and followed the story of Clark Medina (Reid), a stubborn, heart-broken American boy and Lea Olivar (Lustre), a family-oriented girl with an American dream. The two strangers agree to get married with the help of Clark’s aunt, Jack (Cherry Pie Picache) to help Lea get a green card and money for Clark.

 

James Yap’s Italian girlfriend is pregnant

Photo screenshot courtesy of Michela Cazzola's Instagram account

Photo screenshot courtesy of Michela Cazzola’s Instagram account

James Yap is going to be a father for the third time after her Italian girlfriend, Michela Cazzola, confirmed that she is 4 months pregnant.

Cazzola confirmed the news in an interview with Philippine Star’s Ricky Lo last Thursday which was published on Thursday, February 25. She is scheduled to give birth either July or August in the Philippines.

The couple has been in a relationship for four years, having met way back in 2012.

James Yap, who is a cager for the Star Hotshots in the PBA, has a child from his then non-showbiz girlfriend and a son, Bimby, with Kris Aquino.

When the news broke, the presidential tried to keep mum about the issue, but took to Instagram after netizens bombarded her with questions. Posting a selfie with her son, she captioned her photo: “I read some of your comments, the proper thing for me to do is just keep quiet. Bimb’s okay & that’s what matters to me.”

Bimby is Kris’s only child to ex-husband James Yap. Their marriage was annulled in 2012.

Photo courtesy of Pinterest, published under Creative Commons license.

Protect yourself against cervical cancer

Sunday, 21 February 2016 | Written by
Photo courtesy of Pinterest, published under Creative Commons license.
Photo courtesy of Pinterest, published under Creative Commons license.

Photo courtesy of Pinterest, published under Creative Commons license.

Cervical cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among Pinays, with twelve Filipino women dying of the disease everyday.

Thankfully, this fatal disease that plagues hundreds of thousands of women all over the world every year could be prevented and treated.

12 Fast facts about cervical cancer

  1. Globally, cervical cancer ranks fifth among the most common cancers affecting women. Out of the 500,000 reported cases of cervical cancer each year, 270,000 result to deaths.
  2. In the Philippines, statistics show that 7 Filipinas die of the disease everyday.
  3. Two in three Filipino women diagnosed with it may die within five years.
  4. Cervical cancer is a risk for women across race, age, lifestyle or socio-economic status.
  5. It occurs when abnormal cells develop and spread in the cervix, the entrance between the vagina and the uterus.
  6. The human papillomavirus (HPV), a very common virus, is the necessary cause of cervical cancer. Studies show that 99.7 percent of cervical cancer patients are positive for HPV infection. According to an estimate, 80 percent of women are likely to be infected with HPV at some point in their lives.
  7. HPV is primarily transmitted through sexual intercourse, but one may also acquire it through skin-to-skin genital contact. Aside from HPV, other risk factors include: smoking, family history, multiple full-term pregnancies, diets low in fruits and vegetables.
  8. To lessen the risk of getting cervical cancer, one may undergo certain lifestyle changes – such as being conscientious about one’s sexual activities.
  9. Aside from regular consultations and pap smears by your OB-GYN, vaccines that protect against cancer-causing HPV are also now readily available.
  10. According to the World Health Organization’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (WHO-SAGE) on Immunization, girls as young as 9 years old can be protected through HPV immunization before their first exposure to HPV (before sexual contact).
  11. The risk of infection with HPV increases with age, and is highest when a woman is over 66 years old. Thus, screening is recommended starting age 21 to detect cervical abnormalities that precede actual cervical cancer.
  12. Vaccination remains to be recommended for older women to prevent new HPV infections.

Empowering yourself against the big CC

Warding off the disease starts with being equipped with the knowledge of dealing with the possibilities of the disease and ripens with action as one gets vaccinated. Currently, vaccines available for women 9 to 45 years old help prevent the acquisition of HPV. However, this only works if administered before getting exposed to the infection and there are still some cancer-causing types of HPV that are not covered by the vaccine. This means that it is still crucial to undergo regular cancer screening tests to prevent the onset of the malignancy.

Healthway Medical’s Dr. Angeli Aresta-Del Valle through the Philippine Star emphasizes that cervical cancer caused by HPV is a highly preventable and curable disease – as long as it is detected early and patients have adequate awareness. She recommends that women aged 30 and up undergo regular Pap smear and HPV tests because it offers the best protection against cervical cancer. Through these procedures, one can rest assured that abnormal cells are diagnosed and treated early, she says.

Cervical cancer is a traitor. Its symptoms only manifest during the latter stages of the disease, which is why it is important that women go through regular screening tests.

Last year, the Department of Health and the Philippine Obstetric and Gynecological Society (POGS) gave free cervical cancer screening to women 21 years old and above in 65 DOH-retained and selected private tertiary hospitals throughout May in observance of ‘Cervical Cancer Awareness Month.’ But why wait for May when you can protect yourself against cervical cancer now?

Mark Zuckerberg. Photos courtesy of Facebook, collage by the author.

Of start-up stories and the people behind your favorite gadget, app and website

Saturday, 26 December 2015 | Written by
Mark Zuckerberg. Photos courtesy of Facebook, collage by the author.

What would life be without Google, Facebook, or Spotify? Ah, one can’t even begin to imagine. Thankfully, the clouds opened up and God sent these geniuses to create the gadgets, websites and apps we now swear by in our daily lives.

Steve Jobs (Macbook, iPhone and iPad)

Steve Jobs. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Steve Jobs. Photo courtesy of Facebook, collage by the author.

Steve Jobs’s life story is not a straight line, but more like a winding path – as Funders and Founders described it. Adopted at birth by American parents, he took to electronics at an early age because of his dad, who was a mechanic, and to reading, because of his mom. In college, he would prank his classmates and eventually drop out, but not without making his first big money with Steve Wozniak for the illegal “Bluebox” which allowed free long-distance calls. Upon realizing that he can beat big companies, he began assembling computers with the help of Wozniak and his sister in their garage, and hence founded the Apple Computer Company. After this, a tech revolution ensued: he begun Pixar with Toy Story, and launched the iMac, iPod, iTunes and later, the iPhone and iPad.

What guiding principle could have inspired Steve Jobs to do such great work? In a commencement speech he once gave, he revealed that it is this: keep looking for what you love and never settle. And for him, who did not have a grand plan at first, it meant searching for himself in India, through Buddhism, psychedelic use, attempts to become an astronaut and start a computer company in the Soviet Union. So wherever you are in your life right now, the point is, don’t lose faith.

Sergey Brin and Larry Page (Google)

Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Photos courtesy of Facebook, collage by the author.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Photos courtesy of Facebook, collage by the author.

Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page may not have the same name recognitions as Jobs does, but it doesn’t mean that their brainchild is less revolutionary. Brin and Page met as PhD students and computer scientists at Stanford University and disagreed on almost everything at first, but soon found out they were each other’s intellectual soulmates when they started cramming their dorms with cheap computers and applied Brin’s data mining system to build a web search engine. The program became so popular at Stanford that they suspended their PhD studies to start up Google in a rented garage. (What is it with garages and inspiring start-up stories?)

According to Page, Google’s goal is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful, while to Brin, it is about preserving history and making it available to everyone because “knowledge is always good.” Now if that doesn’t sound cool enough, here’s their unofficial motto: “Don’t be evil.” Also, try googling the famous Googleplex headquarters and the envy-inducing perks that Google employees enjoy on a regular basis.

Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook)

Mark Zuckerberg. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Mark Zuckerberg. Photo courtesy of Facebook, collage by the author.

Facebook has made one of the world’s youngest billionaires in Mark Zuckerberg. Born to a comfortable and well-educated family, Zuckerberg developed an interest in computers at an early age. At about 12 years old, he used Atari BASIC to create a messaging program he called “Zucknet,” which his father used in his dental office, so that he could be notified of a new patient without yelling across the room. The family also used the program to communicate within the household. He would also create computer games out of illustrations of his artistic friends to amuse himself.

During high school, Zuckerberg excelled in fencing and literature, but computers remained to be his first love. He continued working on developing new programs, one of which is an early version of the music software Pandora, which he called Synapse. Several big companies like AOL and Microsoft wanted to buy the software and hire the teenager before graduation, but Zuckerberg declined the offers.

Fast forward to his time in Harvard, Zuckerberg earned a reputation as the go-to software developer on campus. He invented a string of programs that would gain support from the student population until he would create with his friends a website that allowed users to create their own profiles, upload photos and communicate with other users. This would eventually become the Facebook we know now.

At present, Zuckerberg is enjoying his 2-month paternity leave while taking care of his wife, Priscilla Chan, and their daughter, Max. Recently, he and his wife pledged that they would be giving 99% of their Facebook shares (currently about $45 billion) to charity over the course of their lives.

Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger (Instagram)

Some people like sharing about themselves and their lives through status updates, but others prefer to tell their stories visually. This is what Instagram creators Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger realized early on. While both are Stanford graduates (like Google’s Brin and Page), the two met when Systrom started an app that allowed location-aware photo and note-sharing which he then called Burbn. Krieger was a fan. Fifteen months ago, they founded Instagram which would then reach staggering popularity with millions of users, including celebrities.

Another interesting tidbit: Systrom was actually approached by Mark Zuckerberg to join their team in developing Facebook in its early years. Systrom, who wanted to stay in school, decided to turn down the offer. While Systrom admits thinking of the what-ifs, he would again cross paths with Zuckerberg eight years after – this time, to sign a $1 billion deal with Facebook.

Jack Dorsey, Evan Williams, Noah Glass, and Biz Stone (Twitter)

Twitter’s origins can be traced back to a daylong brainstorming session attended by board members of the podcasting company Odeo. Jack Dorsey, who was then an undergraduate student at the New York University, had an idea about using an SMS service to communicate with a small group. From a prototype used as an internal service for Odeo employees, Twitter was launched on July 2006.

From being derided as “a tool for the shallow and self-centered to broadcast the munitiae of their lives to the universe,” Twitter has definitely come a long way. Celebrities, CEOs, politicians, journalists and advocates catapulted the website as a “microblogging movement,” disseminating valuable information and pushing various causes.

 

How about you? Did the brains behind your favorite brands make the list? Tell us in the comments section below!

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