I attended the first Philippine Blog Awards awarding ceremonies last night at the RCBC Plaza in Makati. As a finalist, I am allowed to bring along a guest so I asked Ayeen to come with me, right after our semender ‘picnic’ at the La Mesa Dam ecopark.
It was my first time to attend any bloggers’ event, convention or gathering. I felt quite uneasy at first, especially since everyone else seem to have already acquainted themselves well with each other. It’s quite an insecurity of mine. Unlike many of the notable and well-linked bloggers now, I’m probably one of the few who barely gets to comment on other people’s blogs. And it’s not because I’m a snob, as I’ve heard somewhere, I do lurk around all your blogs, but my lack of online correspondence is really just a function of me being very very preoccupied with various things offline.
I didn’t win the best personal blog award, Shari Cruz of Misteryosa.com did. She’s a fellow Mass Comm student in UP Diliman, and a fellow “activist” though she has apparently retired from it. Congratulations to you, Shari. Congratulations too to Ederic of Ederic @ Cyberspace for winning the Pinoy Ako blog award. He’s a online friend who’s also from UP Mass Comm. Congratulations too to my Upsilon brod, Ivan Henares of Ivan About Town, who won the best travel blog award. Congratulations to all the winners! I’m sorry I don’t memorize all of your names and URLs, I’m sure everyone’s links are in the PBA website anyway.
Congratulations to the event’s organizers. Everything seemed to have went very well. It was also nice to finally meet for the first time the people behind all those notable blogs. Hindi na lang ako magne-name drop para walang magtampo kung nalimutan ko as of the moment and URL or name. Hehe.
So, my thoughts. My attendance in the blog awards simply reinforced what I believe the situation of the ‘blogosphere’ is. Almost all bloggers in the Philippines today are still well-to-do urban Filipinos, most of whom are in Manila. And in lieu of the facts that the Philippines is a largely rural country, and a vast majority of Filipinos are still without internet access, I honestly believe that this so-called “Philippine blogosphere” is not as representative of the “Filipino”. With our pride and energy as bloggers, should also come the humility of realizing that “we” bloggers are not that much relevant. Not yet, at least. I don’t even think the internet will play much of a role in the upcoming local and national elections without our dependence on mainstream media.
This passion and hobby of ours is still a very fancy preoccupation, really. But this should not stop us from pursuing greater relevance and inclusive reach. For now, I still dream for a more dynamic and representative blogosphere that showcases in as much as it exposes the common Filipino’s life and the real Philippine situation. And for the mean time, present bloggers like me, and you who’s reading this now, should continue blogging, reading blogs, aspire for better things to come, and do something (aside from blogging) about the things around us.
[POST-SCRIPT, 20:44] I did not bring my bulky camera with me to the event, so I had no pictures to show. Fortunately, there were tens of other bloggers with their photo equipment that night. I was able to snatch two photos here, one from Chris Haravata of In Retrospect… and Karla Redor of Rockersworld.com.