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cebu news Mobile

Sony Ericsson unveils W200i, W610i, and W880i in Cebu

For a confessed Sony Ericsson fan boy, last Thursday’s unveiling of new Sony Ericsson models was a slice of heaven for me. The company launched three new Walkman phone models–the W200i, W610i, and W880i. The phones are expected to be available in the Philippines by the second quarter of this year.

Sony Ericsson w880i SEXY. I thought to myself during the presentation of the phone by this drop-phone-and-say-hello-gorgeous model that if a booming voice from up there were to suddenly say “Max, you have been a good boy these past few months. As reward, you can pick either the phone or the model to take home with you tonight,” I’d pick the phone anytime. It is that sexy. Click on photo to view larger image.

I normally don’t get to attend launchings, they’re either too early–morning and lunch events–or too late–evening affairs–for me. But last week, I swapped news desk tasks with a colleague just to attend the event. When I got there, the event hadn’t started yet and I got to talk to Sony Ericsson officials about their products. One, in particular, warned me against converting my K750i into a W800i, a task I’m 90 percent bent on performing. “Huwag!!!? (No!!!!) was what she said, but that’s for another post.

Of the three phones launched, the cheapest is the W200i. It is marketed as a “Walkman phone for everyone,? an entry-level music mobile.

The W200i is a tri-band phone that does all the things a modern phone does: send SMS, MMS, take photos (but with only a VGA camera, but what do you expect, it’s an entry-level phone for crying out loud), play games and a host of other multi-media phone functions.

Categories
cebu news Journalism Open source

Do you have a complaint against a Cebu newspaper? File it online

And here’s the link to the complaint form.

Our editor-in-chief, one of the driving forces behind the Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC), asked me to build the council’s website in time for the Cebu Press Freedom Week celebration in September.

CCPC website CCPC WEBSITE, as featured in a recent issue of Philippine Journalism Reports. Click on image to enlarge.

The requirements for the site were simple: the ability to post articles and reports and an easy facility to get feedback–features easily managed by my favorite open source blogging platform, WordPress.

I briefly considered using another content management system (CMS) with more advance portal features, some form of document tracking or online file repository but the person tasked with updating the site said these aren’t needed. Complaints, she said, will be handled offline.

Categories
cebu news Personal

Johnny-come-lately

I’m in Cebu Journalism and Journalists 2, a glossy magazine that comes out during the Cebu Press Freedom Week celebration. The magazine’s purpose is “to put between its covers people, institutions, and activities that have helped bring Cebu journalism to what it is now: dynamic and thriving.” Cebu Journalism and Journalists

I wasn’t initially picked to be among the journalists featured in the magazine. I was, in fact, the last to be included in the volume.

A few days before the magazine was to be sent to the printer, I arrived at the office in my usual getup: jeans and shirt with scruffy hair on a face untouched by razor for a few weeks. I was surprised to be told to fix myself up, borrow a polo shirt and have my picture taken.

I was then told to write something about myself and, being the hardcore blogger that I am, I couldn’t resist including my weblog URL in the text. My late addition caused the relegation of a big-shot Cebuano broadcaster from a full-page treatment in the magazine into just half a page.

Max Limpag My half-page of fame in the Cebu Journalism and Journalists magazine. Click to enlarge.

The journalists included in the magazine were also featured in a photo exhibit in Ayala Center Cebu. I wasn’t able to visit the exhibit, which ended last night, because the past few days have been hectic for me and my family. As expected, I got ribbed for the drop in sales at the mall as my picture was scaring shoppers away.

Categories
cebu news Journalism Work

A fire, a map, and a WordPress theme

Fire gutted the landmark Plaza Fair building early morning Tuesday. Reports say the fire caused P20 million in damages. The blaze broke out just as we were finalizing the day’s newspaper issue. We no longer had time to include the story in the issue.

But I admit it was tempting to copy Michael Keaton in The Paper-the whole “Stop the press!” bit. Of course you couldn’t do that in Sun.Star Cebu, our printing plant is kilometers away and if you needed to “stop the press” for a late breaker, you’d either have to call or text the plant manager. Somehow texting “stp d prs” isn’t as dramatic as barging into the plant and screaming the words.

The fire was visible from our office canteen, two blocks away (check photos and map below).

Categories
cebu news Odd Personal

Close encounter of a different kind

If you looked up the Cebu sky last night, you’d have the crap scared out of you. At least seven balls of light were clearly visible in a linear formation (if you squint hard enough and connect the dots, it could be the Grim Reaper’s scythe.) The lights were stationary and stayed visible for minutes.

Text messages were being sent around, asking people to look up the sky. I ran to our office’s canteen and saw the lights for myself. It was eerie and beautiful. (Click on the photo to view the larger image.) Across the street, people were stopping to look at it. I couldn’t make out their faces, whether they showed awe or fear or fascination.

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cebu news

How to eat a suman or why Dennis Rodman walked out

Can somebody tell me why organizers didn’t just serve Dennis Rodman’s suman without the banana wrapping? Basketball’s Bad Boy reportedly got mad yesterday when, after being served the glutinous rice delicacy, he ate it including the banana leaf wrapper.

Rodman is in Cebu for The Bad Boy Tour. He was scheduled to play at the Mandaue City Sports Complex last night in the NBA Legends vs. San Miguel All Stars matchup.

News of the walkout was all over the newsroom yesterday. I never got to talk to the reporters and photographers who were present during the press conference snubbed by the former Chicago Bulls and Pistons standout but this was confirmed by several sources.

Categories
cebu news Personal

Iring is Bisaya for cat, iring-iring is…

Something else. I’ve been trying to find its English equivalent but failed. It’s close to flirting but without the sexual connotation. It shares shades of meaning with courting but is less formal and doesn’t mean that the person wants to go steady with the object of the iring-iring.

My kumpare and colleague Myke Obenieta says there isn’t an equivalent English word for iring-iring. Myke will launch his book “Iring-iring sa tingbitay sa iro” on Saturday at 4:00 p.m. in Kahayag Cafe.

Now, tingbitay sa iro is a curious phrase. It literally means “the time to hang dogs.” It means hard times. Cebuanos now just say “tingbitay” to describe hard times. I suspect, and Myke says this is the case, that Cebuanos of old slaughtered their dogs for food during hard times. Maybe they hang the dogs to kill them or to prepare the meat for cooking, I don’t know.

Categories
cebu news Personal

Looking for the Cebu megadome? Use your nose

The Cebu Provincial Government is working on a really tight deadline to finish the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) in time for the city’s hosting of an Asean summit this December.

Capitol had long planned for an international convention center and even held an architectural design competition for a megadome but the project was stalled during the time of then governor Pablo Garcia because the Provincial Board refused to approve it.

The project has already been approved and awarded to a contractor this year. It will be built on a lot in the reclamation area in Mandaue City. And there’s the rub. It is located in a spot in Mandaue City notorious for its suffocating stink.

If you’re on your way to Cebu City from Mandaue, here’s how you can spot the site of the megadome.

Categories
cebu news Journalism

Manuel Oyson, Jr., 71

Sun.Star Cebu columnist Manuel Oyson Jr. died Monday, months after suffering a massive heart attack. Oyson, considered the dean of Cebu sportswriters, suffered a heart attack reportedly after an emotional outburst over his legal battle with an insurance company. Oyson had been claiming insurance payments for one of his properties that had been destroyed in a fire.

Attorney Oyson had been with Sun.Star Cebu since its inaugural issue on Nov. 25, 1982. Heres part of the Sun.Star Cebu story on his death:

While some of his opinions were unpopular, he was not afraid to make them known through his columns. One of his daring forecasts was the victory of Mexicos Erik Morales over Filipino sentimental favorite Manny Pacquiao in the two boxers first encounter last year.

Categories
cebu news Personal

Did Budoy actually say gerger on Pinoy Big Brother?

Cebu’s reggae king Budoy of Junior Kilat is one of the celebrity housemates in Pinoy Big Brother and boy will he make this season interesting. I’m not a regular viewer of the program but I’ll be tuning in this season because of two Cebu-based housemates: Budoy and Angela Calina.

Suspicions that Budoy will sanitize his act for Pinoy Big Brother promptly vanished a few seconds after his introduction last night. He sang his version of the Big Brother theme, reworking the lyrics to sing about his entry into the program.

And at one point, when he was hugging one of the program’s host he said “Wa koy sa kung maka gerger ko ani.” I was only half listening to the broadcast because I was still finishing a news page but this made me stop everything I was doing. Everyone in the newsroom laughed. Gerger is a euphemism for sex. It’s one of those gayspeak words that have gone mainstream. Being a euphemism, it doesn-t sound as vulgar as kayat, though. I’m not good at translating but what Budoy said, for me, was: don’t blame me if I get to make love here (in the show?). I’m not as sure but he could also mean: don’t blame me if I get to screw her (the host). Any other bisdak who was able to hear what he actually said?

And when the host said hinihikayat after Budoy said a lot of people would be texting for him, Budoy actually told her it was bastos. Good thing she didn’t ask him what kayat meant.