Online Around the Archipelago: On the Philippine Blog Awards

“Blogger” is one of those cool titles you can attach to yourself without being as arrogant as, say, calling yourself a writer. It definitely takes less work than traditional writing—in blogging, getting published is just a button click away. But being an award-winning blogger sure is something else. And if you think you’re up for it, don’t settle for just any award. National level is the way to go.

Since 2007, the Philippine Blog Awards (PBA) has been giving recognition to bloggers all over the country—with separate awards for Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Bloggers are awarded in different categories such as personal, technology, fashion, and others. Special awards for individual posts, podcasts, and blog designs are awarded as well.

The nominees and winners are not necessarily literary big shots or elite writers. Any blogger, young or old, famous or not, can join and win. I had the honor of being chosen as a finalist for the best personal blog category last 2009, and it was a surprise for me. Jim Paredes won in our category that year, which just proves how diverse the nominees can get.

Even though I wasn’t able to attend the awards two years ago, PBA was a great experience. I got to know of so many interesting blogs and the passionate people behind them. In my opinion, the Philippine Blog Awards are a good way of promoting quality blogging in the country. For me, blogs have always been a way of finding great new reads without having to buy books.  The blog awards enable me to go around the country on a literary journey. Such good writing, so many interesting topics, and so many new people to meet.

This year, the theme for the awards night is Bayanihan. This makes me think of how much social media has played a role in our national consciousness. Recently, social media has made its way more and more into our newsfeeds and our minds. From funny things like Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago’s banats to humor gone awry like the case of Christopher Lao, to more nationalistic issues such as James Soriano’s controversial and seemingly contrived essay on the Filipino language and F. Sionil Jose’s honest critique on why we are shallow, social media has helped us discover more about ourselves as a nation—what makes us laugh, how mean we can be, and how we deal with differences in opinion.

I just hope that our social media presence as a nation can go beyond Ms. Universe online polls and making people trend on Twitter. Blogs are a great way to spread ideas and promote advocacies. Bayanihan isn’t just about extending physical help—it can be about helping each other become informed (as Mr. Lao says). They say the youth don’t care about issues anymore. I say we do, just in a different platform. We may not be motivated to scan through broadsheets but Facebook newsfeeds are a quicker way of sharing online articles. Social media can make virtually anything interesting. I hope I see the day when it makes reading and participating in discussions of issues cool again.

Update: The nominations for the 2011 Philippine Blog Awards have been extended until October 15! Go to the PBA website to register and nominate any blog or post that you think deserves an award (nominating yourself is cool, too).

About rz fortajada
20, Student | Frustrated Rockstar | Part-time Ninja Turtle | Blogger

2 Responses to Online Around the Archipelago: On the Philippine Blog Awards

  1. jaypeesan says:

    Cool! What would be even more awesome is if one of our fellow OrCom bloggers would get a place for his OrCom blog. I think that would be the ultimate prestige not just for the individual but also for our degree program as well!

  2. Brian says:

    I agree with you that blogs have served more purpose than being an online journal. They indeed have become vehicles of influence online. Anyway, are you going to join the blog awards again this year? It would really be cool if one of my friends becomes a finalist or wins the award. Go Rizza! 😀

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