why filipino bloggers and game developers are a new breed of heroes

01/19/07 at 10:17 pm | Posted in Gaming, INQUIRER.net, Tech | 3 Comments

As I’ve said in my INQUIRER.net Infotech @Play column piece “The revolution will not be televised, but blogged,” I believe 2007 will be the Year of the Filipino Blogger.

I’m glad Yuga finds himself agreeing with this assessment, though it seems the comments on his blog post have gone on a different tangent. While I respect where people in both sides of the debate were coming from, I think some things were said in the heat of the moment, and I just didn’t want to add to that. Or maybe I was just lazy, heh.

J. Angelo Racoma has an excellent post on “Why The Blog Herald is a Big Deal,” or, as Mike Abundo would put it, why it’s a big frickin’ deal. I agree with what Angelo says about the redistribution of capital, with “the foremost capital [being] Knowledge (with a big K).” Thanks Angelo for also citing my post on Filipino bloggers in discussing citizen journalism over at The Blog Herald.

And yes, I still believe Filipino bloggers are taking over the blogosphere, heh. It would be such a waste of talent if we don’t.

I’d like to add that apart from the Filipino blogger, I believe the Filipino gamer and Filipino game developer will also experience a very fruitful year in 2007. Here’s an excerpt from Alex Villafania’s article, which is the hackenslash banner story as of this writing:

THE UPCOMING e-Services Philippines conference and exhibition has finally recognized the game development industry as among the newest IT sub-sectors in the country, along with the business process outsourcing, call center and transcription sectors.

An executive from game development firm Anino Entertainment was invited to speak regarding game development in the Philippines and its potential to provide outsourced services and create original content.

Anino Entertainment CEO Niel Dagondon told hackenslash that this would be the first time that game development will be presented as a high-value industry.

It’s great that the importance of the local game development industry is finally being recognized. The thing you have to remember about our Filipino game developers is that with the talent many of them possess, they could easily find greener pastures abroad — and many do. Some, however, choose to stay, or return here to put up studios that will generate jobs here and get outsourcing projects from game development companies in other countries, or create their own IP.

I’m proud to say we have world-class game developers, though we need more of them and greater support from the government and private sector. The Philippines could be a game development hub and in fact is becoming one thanks to the sariling sikap and lakas loob of our developers, who have relied on their own pockets due to the lack of support. But they’re now consolidating their efforts, and we may now see a whole industry reaping success, instead of just a few studios.

Am I belittling the efforts of our countrymen who work abroad when I celebrate the fact that Filipinos are discovering they can stay here in the Philippines and still take advantage of global opportunities? I don’t think so. Nor was that Yuga’s intent, I’m sure.

I’m just saying we have alternatives. If people want to go abroad, that’s fine. But if people also start to realize that the jobs can migrate to them instead of us having to migrate, what’s wrong with that?

I know it’s a sensitive issue, and I know the flow of remittances is, as various people over the years have said, “propping up the Philippine economy.” But that’s the point — why should it have to be propped up in the first place? And while those who remit dollars may feel the country owes them a great debt, why should our economy rely heavily on the earnings of OFWs?

And lest we forget: those of us who stay here in the Philippines are also “propping up the economy.” World-class talents don’t always have to go to another country to be recognized. You can stay here and do a damn good job, in spite of the horrible conditions, and be proud that you’re putting the country on the map.

The irony is that in the Philippines, it’s almost taken for granted that you have to work abroad. Isn’t it strange that we have to convince ourselves to stay? And while I’m sure my friends who have chosen to work abroad mean well, sometimes I get sick of some of them asking when I’m going abroad dahil sayang lang ang talino mo diyan sa Pinas — many of you have probably heard variations on that theme. I’m not saying I’ll never work abroad, but right now I’m choosing to stay here. I respect the choice of those who leave the country, but I also expect them to respect our choice to stay. And what if I tell you, sayang naman ang talino mo, hindi mo na lang gamitin dito sa Pinas. How can the country be rebuilt, if no one will stay here to do all that hard work?

I’m not putting bloggers or game developers on a pedestal. I’m just acknowledging that they’re becoming a potent force, and giving new career opportunities and setting a new example for Filipinos.

Maybe what we need to do is to acknowledge what the bagong bayani are doing for us, but also look beyond remittances and celebrate a new breed of heroes. Heroes who will fight the good fight here — and stay.

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3 Comments »

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  1. Re “why should our economy rely heavily on the earnings of OFWs?”

    Are you asking the OFWs? Because honestly I, as one of them, don’t know why. Wouldn’t it be better if you pose that question to our nation’s great and brilliant leaders?

  2. hi gil, thanks for visiting. yup, that question’s being posed to our leaders — and to all of us who have resigned ourselves to the status quo.

  3. great post!


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