Joel D. Pinaroc

Joel has been a media practitioner since 1996, starting off as a reporter and eventually becoming editor of a pioneering IT trade newspaper in Manila. He is currently one of the content producers of a Manila-based developmental website.

Melvin G. Calimag

Melvin G. Calimag is currently the executive editor of an IT news website in the Philippines. Melvin has been covering the local IT beat for the last 13 years. He is currently a board member at the IT Journalists Association of the Philippines (CyberPress), and also serves as a charter member with the Philippine Science Journalists Association.

Latest Posts

Inspiration from a democracy icon

Inspiration from a democracy icon

I think it was Anthony Spaeth, correspondent of Time magazine during the 1986 Philippine revolution, who said Filipinos love freedom so much that they preferred it over a fuller rice bowl.Such is the virtue, as well as the misfortune, of the Philippines that has struggled economically, despite ending years of despotic rule by former president Ferdinand Marcos.

published July 31, 2009 by

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A look back at Arroyo's ICT term

A look back at Arroyo's ICT term

As I watched the State of the Nation Address (Sona) of Pres. Gloria Arroyo last Monday, I noticed that she peppered her speech with rosy economic figures to hit back at critics who have said her administration has done nothing but plunder the nation's coffers.

published July 28, 2009 by

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On matters of security

On matters of security

Before I proceed to my chosen topic, let me fire off a quick broadside at the recent ruling of the NTC (National Telecommunications Communications) to ban mobile spam and extend the shelf life of the cellphone load of prepaid customers. While I applaud the agency's action, my question is: Why only now?

published July 17, 2009 by

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Unnecessary distraction from country's e-polls

Unnecessary distraction from country's e-polls

If not for the weird story that President Arroyo underwent a breast implant operation in a local hospital, I'm pretty sure the heat and public ridicule would not have abated against tech firm TIM, after it threatened to pull out from its partnership with Dutch-Venezuelan company Smartmatic for the automation of 2010 national elections.For the benefit of readers based outside of the Philippines, TIM (Total Information Management) told the Commission on Elections (Comelec) last Monday, Jun.

published July 6, 2009 by

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So you're the boring guy

So you're the boring guy

As I write this, news organizations all over the world are still scrambling to cover the sudden and shocking death of Michael Jackson, a "troubled genius" and "tortured icon", as CNN put it. Certainly, he was no boring guy as he was the master of the entertainment stage.

published June 27, 2009 by

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Weirdest IT story I've written

Weirdest IT story I've written

In my almost a decade of covering the IT beat here in the Philippines, I've written different sorts of stories--some of them quite interesting (at least in my point of view), some were technical (although I also didn't really understand the IT concepts myself), and a few that we might label as weird. In my book, weird means absurd.

published June 20, 2009 by

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Rays of hope from the polls

Rays of hope from the polls

The local IT industry has been teeming with activities in the last few weeks, so much so that you'll wonder if there's really an economic crisis going on. Not even the sudden upsurge of reported H1N1 cases in the country has dampened the mood around town.

published June 10, 2009 by

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Microsoft local chief, top execs grab 'separation' package

Microsoft local chief, top execs grab 'separation' package

When Rafael "Pepeng" Rollan, managing director of Microsoft Philippines, told the local IT press on May 17 that the company was offering a voluntary separation package (VSP) to its local employees as part of Microsoft's global job cuts, I didn't have the slightest idea that he, too, will quit his job and take advantage of the exit package.But that's exactly what happened as Microsoft, in a press statement this morning, announced that Rollan will relinquish his post this September.

published May 29, 2009 by

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Catching up with voyeurism and cybercrime

Catching up with voyeurism and cybercrime

The over-the-top coverage by the mainstream media this week on the sex video scandal of a celebrity doctor here has been particularly amusing. Though I subscribe to the idea that it shouldn't have been accorded front-page treatment, I now think that it is perhaps a blessing in disguise that it exploded this way as it has exposed the country's lack of applicable laws that penalize online voyeurism, pornography, trafficking, and other cyber-related crimes.

published May 23, 2009 by

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WiMax: Waiting to explode in Philippines?

WiMax: Waiting to explode in Philippines?

Last weekend, I had the chance to take part in an offsite press event organized by Smart Communications, the topdog in the mobile telecom space here in the Philippines. I was surprised to hear that they, too, have plans to roll out WiMax, as its rival Globe Telecom had done recently.

published May 15, 2009 by

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A MegaPacific mess in the making?

A MegaPacific mess in the making?

The way things are going at the pre-qualification bidding of IT suppliers for the 2010 elections, I now have this uneasy feeling that the country will again end up with another botched attempt at automating the polls and in its wake lays another MegaPacific mess.

published May 7, 2009 by

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Need for Filipino IT firms to go global

Need for Filipino IT firms to go global

Unlike India which has launched quite a number of successful global IT firms, mostly in the BPO (business process outsourcing) sector, the Philippines seems to be content in merely hosting multinational companies in the country.A cursory glance at the composition of the largest tech firms in the country would reveal that the majority, if not all, of them are foreign-owned.

published April 20, 2009 by

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Summertime in the age of Facebook

Summertime in the age of Facebook

For Filipinos, the arrival of summer means going on a vacation, usually to the beach. As a kid, I always looked forward to the months of April and May, when we take a break from school and indulge in the biggest thrill of them all--playing nonstop.

published April 13, 2009 by

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