PH Congress ‘delivers’ Duterte’s wish to shut down the nation’s biggest network

July 10, 2020 – 70 members of the House of Representatives’ Committee on Legislative Franchises delivered the most stunning blow to PH Press Freedom after Martial Law by refusing to renew the franchise of the country’s largest and most trusted television network. The decision came after 13 days of deliberations over allegations that have all  been cleared by the Department of Justice, National Telecommunication Commission, and Bureau of Internal Revenue.

Allies and propagandists of Duterte maintain that this is an issue of violations of a private company and has nothing to do with politics. But as it goes, the only “offense” of the network seems to be their unwillingness to bow down to power even as the president repeatedly threatened that he would make sure that the renewal of their franchise would not happen.

See:

Duterte to ABS-CBN: Next year, you’re out

Duterte to ABS-CBN: Promote federalism, we’ll settle case

TIMELINE: Duterte against ABS-CBN’s franchise renewal

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Gameboys sets a pretty high bar for BL Series in the PH

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I fell in love with Gameboys right off the first episode, faster than the lead character Cairo could say PLAY to being wooed which set off the story of the series. In just a little over 10 minutes it was already apparent that the show is something special, not just in comparison with shows of the same genre, but even compared to the near-endless list of shows available online for streaming.

Gameboys is headlined by Elijah Canlas (Kalel 15, LSS, Edward, Sundalong Kanin) who plays Cairo and Kokoy de Santos (Fuccbois, Tumbang Preso) as Gavreel. Both actors have acclaimed performances in festival movies in the past and have been acting since they were kids. Meanwhile, the supporting cast Adriana So (Pearl) and Kyle Velino (Terrence) are regulars in local television shows. This is important to note because the quality of performances in Gameboys sets it apart from the other local BL (Boys Love) series that were produced and released during the same period.

The show benefits from a well-written screenplay by Ash Malanum (Unforgettable, Kiko Boksingero), set design by Nestor Abrogena Jr. (Mananaggal sa Unit 23B) which effectively creates a believable personality for the characters, and a soundtrack that you can play on a loop for days. These are all put together with ease by Ivan Andrew Payawal (I America) to create a contemporary story that does not feel confined by the limitations of its medium.

No more game downtime with Vivo V19 Neo’s large-capacity 4500mAh Li-Po battery

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In quarantine season people have become even more dependent on electronic devices especially smartphones to keep them connected with loved ones and conveniently pursue and enjoy their lifestyles.

With different activities — messaging on various platforms, posting on social media, surfing the internet, buying from online stores, listening to music, watching movies and videos, and playing online games — keeping people busy, it is really disappointing to get a low battery warning, or the handset going “dead”.

Thankfully, the latest V19 Neo is powered by a 4500mAh lithium-polymer (Li-Po) battery, one of the largest capacities in its price range, to keep Vivo’s flagship mid-range smartphone running in optimum performance, longer.

International performer to help raise funds for Pinoy performing arts community

Acclaimed international theater performer and recording artist, Hayden Tee is lending his talents to help raise funds for displaced workers of the performing arts community in the Philippines. He will be spotlighted in PalabasTayo’s “After Party” an online series featuring conversations with artists on Friday, 24 April 2020.

Tee was recently in the Philippines playing Ms. Trunchbull in the Manila run of Matilda the Musical tour. Sadly, due to the enhanced community quarantine, the show that was supposed to run until March 22 at The Theater at Solaire was canceled a week after it opened.

The touring cast members from the Royal Shakespeare Company had to fly back to their respective homes before the Manila lockdown took place. Tee had to fly to New York before flying back to his home in New Zealand, and like most people who traveled to COVID-19 affective areas, he had to do self-quarantine for several days.

Starbucks re-opens select Drive-Thru Stores in PH

Update: 4/9/2020

Due to the overwhelming reception, Starbucks PH has decided to pause operations of its drive-thru stores to support the government’s enhanced community quarantine protocols.

4/8/2020 It has been almost a month since the Community Quarantine started in Luzon. At this point, we are all looking for some semblance of normalcy and what is more normal than having that daily coffee fix from Starbucks!

Well, good news! Starting April 8, select Starbucks stores will open to serve you via Drive-Thru.

Starbucks Philippines temporarily closed all of its stores on March 23 following the start of the community lockdown. Amid the pandemic, the company has donated food and beverages to frontliners such as medical personnel, law enforcement personnel, NGO volunteers and organizations.

Essential Apps for those living in the Metro in the time of Covid-19

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Update: 3/25/2020

A community quarantine was implemented in Manila on March 12, shortly after this article was posted. This was upgraded to an enhanced community quarantine for the entire Luzon on March 16. With that in place, only businesses that offer food/medicine remain open. Apps that offer essential services like AIDE, Metromart, Foodpanda and Grab remain active at this time. There are also Facebook pages offering delivery services and riders/shoppers for hire.

3/10/2020 – As the number of Filipinos that are infected or under investigation for COVID-19 increases, the WHO has asked people worldwide to stay home and limit going out. This makes sense especially in densely populated areas like Metro Manila where catching the virus can happen literally anywhere.