Martes, Disyembre 19, 2017

 Two POEA domain names violate PH government Internet domain policy—Lilac Center

Many may not have noticed it, but the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), an attached agency of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), may be in violation of the government’s Internet domain names policy by registering not one, but two, critical programs that impinges on the privacy of OFWs.

This was the observation of the Lilac Center for Public Interest, Inc. (Lilac Center) which recently called on the DOLE to be transparent by making public the individual/s under whose name/s the and are registered.

The is the Internet site of the Balik-Manggagawa Online Processing Center which facilitates the issuance of overseas employment certificates (OECs) to returning OFWs, while the is the Internet portal of the controversial OFW ID Card. Both Internet portals collect, access, use, disclose, or process private OFW data or information.  

In a media release, Nicon F. Fameronag, president of the Lilac Center, warned OFWs that their privacy might be compromised when using the two portals.

“By their domain names, .ph shows it is for commercial use and its registrar is a private businessman, hence, for profit, while the domain is solely for registration of Philippine government agencies.

“The government’s Internet domain names policy requires subsidiaries, attached agencies, and non-autonomous components of top-level entities to register their domain names under They are not eligible to register separately,” Fameronag said.

The domain is delegated from the root authority to the Department of Science and Technology’s Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI). On the other hand, the .ph domain name is administered by dotPH Domains Inc., owned by businessman José Emmanuel "Joel" Disini, chief executive officer. This company also holds and maintains the database of domain names, and

This being the case, the Lilac Center official said whoever owns the domain names and—(and surely, it is not the POEA,” said Fameronag)—could have access to valuable private data of five million or more OFWs. He expressed fear that the person or persons who had registered the two domain names and who administer the two portals could have already accessed OFW data and used them improperly.

“Without us knowing who have access to sensitive OFW data and what security guarantees there are for their processing, OFWs face the very real danger of their personal information being stolen or worse, used for sinister purposes,” Fameronag explained.

This is possible, he said, because dotPH Domains, Inc. has developed the so-called Shared Registry System (SRS) which enable domain name registrars and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to manage domains and accept registrations on their own websites by connecting to the dotPH registry backend.

“There is a module that downloads and installs on servers actual communication with the registry backend, accepts online credit card payments, and hosts websites,” Fameronag said.

Finally, the former DOLE executive said that because the two POEA portals engage in the collection, access, use, disclosure, or other appropriate processing of private data or information, the servers being used by these online sites should be governed by Republic Act No. 10173, otherwise known as the Data Privacy Act of 2012, and its Implementing Rules and Regulations.

He also said unsuspecting OFWs can be attracted to use the portals and because these display and contain official POEA and DOLE logos.

“Is there an agreement between the DOLE and the POEA for the private owners of and for the use by the latter of official government logos or icons?” Fameronag said, as he urged Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III to investigate the matter. (VGarciaBlogs)

Lunes, Nobyembre 27, 2017



Photo courtesy by Intramuros Administration.
A design thinking collaboration between Inteligencias Colectivas, Intramuros Administration , Design Center of the Philippines paves way for a sustainable transformation of food carts and stalls in Intramuros Photo courtesy of Intramuros Administration. Food carts and stalls in Intramuros are about to get redesigned as “Rolling Manila!” beginning November 15, paving the way for a research on street food peddling in the historical Walled City and the subsequent improvement of these street food stalls using sustainable designs made possible through the ACERCA Program of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) and in collaboration with the Intramuros Administration and the Design Center of the Philippines.

In the heart of Manila, Intramuros is one of the nerve centers of the Philippines. The weight of history that it carries and the cultural points of interest that it shelters within its walls coexist with the influx of both local and foreign tourists, a growing commercial activity, the presence of public institutions, private businesses and universities, the proximity of the gigantic port of the megacity and the desire to turn itself into a true hub for promoting the creative and cultural sectors of the country.

Intramuros is all of this and much more. Its urban space is filled with hawkers’ stalls that define a distinctive style of settling the street. The vendors whether or not officially registered as such, represent a unique collective composed mainly of women (69%) with years of experience (50 to 60 years of age) that manages a homey modus vivendi, more often stationary than itinerant. Despite being a living treasure of the other side of Manila, the real one or the one that is not mentioned in tourist guides,- like in other capitals in the world – belittled.

Aware of the importance of socially accommodating this collective of itinerant vendors and the possibility of contributing to it through cultural cooperation initiatives, the Spanish Cooperation, through the ACERCA Program of AECID, has enthusiastically welcome the “Rolling Manila” project of ZOOHAUS, which for two weeks will design strategies that will demonstrate the human heritage of the network physically improving the food carts to make them more attractive and effective as well as making them more visible for visitors to get acquainted with them.

The project recommends a process of enhancement of the vendors in Intramuros as human heritage, working with them in terms of how to include them in the tourism context as well as promoting the local culture through people and what they know to do.

ZOOHAUS is set to collaborate with the Intramuros Administration (IA) and the Design Center of the Philippines for the “Rolling Manila” project to support IA and Design Center’s joint goal of developing a creative cluster in Intramuros. The active partnership between the three agencies explores Intramuros as a laboratory for creating design strategies that will effectively work for the upliftment of the Filipino street food vendors collective as well as reflecting a gastronomic culture that is distinctively Filipino. Moreover, the vision of the creative collaboration is in line with the development plans for the Philippine creative economy.

Intramuros Administration will make available to Zoohaus all the means at its disposal in order to carry out a thorough research on the practical needs of the itinerant vendors, such as location mapping of the street vendors within Intramuros, and engagement of the street food vendors into the project.


Seeing how the project necessitates a design research process, Design Center of the Philippines prepared curated food and design tours around Manila to provide Zoohaus an immersion to Intramuros and its history, Philippine street food culture, and the design and built environment. Also part of the design research process are interaction and visits to tricycle manufacturers and Sarao factory for a deeper understanding of the city’s landscape and transportation system; and visits to Divisoria, Tondo, Quiapo, and Recto for sourcing of possible materials for the redesigned food carts.

Design Center also tapped cultural heritage conservation expert Associate Professor Eric Zerrudo to discuss the significance of Cultural Heritage mapping as a tool in recognizing, understanding, and planning the future use of Intramuros cultural assets; and Chef Claude Tayag to share an overview of the Filipino gastronomic culture.

At the same time, the tours around Manila allows Zoohaus to see the food carts the vendors built themselves in its natural, dynamic environment, which will provide information on the very context in which they are set, and lends the design process the necessary context. Unraveling these devices, “Rolling Manila!” will allow the discovery of some aspects of the socio-economic reality of this area in Manila, its industry and resources, the form of settling the public space of the city and other elements.

ZOOHAUS will share their techniques and expertise with designers from the Design Center to improve and modernize these stalls on wheels using designs and objects that may increase their effectiveness and enhance its attractiveness to visitors.
 A prototype of redesigned carts

The prototyping of the redesigned carts and stalls will also be done in partnership with Escuela Taller de Filipinas and student observers from the Lyceum of the Philippines University. At the end of the project, a map will be developed to further put in context the food culture and assets within the walls of Intramuros and a new experiential dimension. The public display and conference on the redesigned carts and stalls will be on 29 November 2017 at 10:00 AM in Plaza Sto. Tomas, Intramuros.             


ZOOHAUS is a platform for networking that came into being in 2007, combining the interests of different agents linked to the fields of architecture and urban planning. Since 2009, ZOOHAUS has set up INTELIGENCIAS COLECTIVAS, an open online platform and a free of charge database that collects skills classified as related to traditional construction and urban practice. The research as well as the design and construction work of INTELIGENCIAS COLECTIVAS is always carried out with local agents through workshops and construction of prototypes.

ZOOHAUS has been awarded in several competitions, placing second and receiving a secondary award in EUROPAN IX, aside from garnering the first prize in URBANACCIÓN organized by the foundation La Casa Encendida in Madrid as well as the Arquia/Próxima Award in 2013. It was also a finalist in the XII Spanish Architecture Biennial, selected by the VIII Ibero-american Architecture and Urban Planning Biennial. ZOOHAUS has also received the Karl Brunner Prize in the urban planning design category during the XXIII Architecture Biennial in Colombia, the VIII Architecture Biennial in the Caribbean and the XI Architecture Biennial in the Dominican Republic. In 2013 and 2014, ZOOHAUS formed part of the project and exhibit “Uneven Growth: Tactical Urbanisms for Expanding Megacities", curated by Pedro Gadanho at the MoMa in New York and at MAK in Vienna.


The Design Center of the Philippines is the leading agency committed to cultivating a culture that thrives in creativity, value creation, and innovation. The enhanced role of the Design for the creative economy is the fruit of the Philippine Design Competitive Act of 2013 (also known as Republic Act 10557). Its mandate is to promote design to:

● Improve the creative branding and competitiveness of quality Filipino products in the global market.
● Create value for Filipino products through strategic development and sustainable economic growth. ● Enhance quality of life through innovation The Design Center teams up with the Intramuros.

Administration in various projects aimed at reviving the Walled City of Intramuros, and developing it into a creative hub, where its historical, cultural, and relatively young human assets are leveraged on for urban development. Aside from Rolling Manila, Design Center and IA worked hand in hand in staging open houses, design talks, design tours, design competitions, workshops, art installations, and other activities aimed at enriching everyone’s creative sensibilities.


Under its mandate, the Intramuros Administration is committed to the orderly restoration and development the Walled City of Intramuros as a monument to the Hispanic period of our history. As a highly regarded cultural landmark, Intramuros is an icon of Filipino heritage and national consciousness that calls for the preservation and enhancement of its historical value. In view of the agency’s restoration and redevelopment programs for Intramuros, the Intramuros Administration engages in projects and activities, and forges strategic partnerships that ensure its inclusive and sustainable development.

The ACERCA Program of AECID 

A training program of AECID for development in the cultural sector, the ACERCA Program was created in 2005 to implement the First Line of Action in Culture and Development: Training Human Capital in the Cultural Sector. Its main objective is the enhancement of the skills of partners of Spanish Cooperation in all cultural fields. One of the main lines of action is the training and capacity-building of cultural players and managers from public and private institutions to contribute to the improvement in the promotion of culture of partner countries. It is also directed towards facilitating the meeting of experts and professionals with a view to establishing cooperation mechanisms, regional strategies and the creation of networks. ACERCA likewise seeks to reinforce institutions and consolidate state policies on culture through the development of specific training programs at the request of counterpart institutions.(VerGarciaBlogs)

Lunes, Nobyembre 20, 2017


Lilac Center slams DOLE for midnight’ ban on new OFW's

For suspending the processing of  all new applications for overseas employment
certificates (OEC's), including those of direct hire workers, the Lilac Center for Public
Interest slammed the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), saying the suspension
is tantamount to an admission that the government specifically the DOLE and the Philippine
Overseas Employment Administration, is utterly helpless and inutile in curbing the activities
of illegal recruiter.

The Department Order No. 185 S of 2017 issued

In Department Order No. 185 S. of 2017 issued 9 November 2017, DOLE Secretary  Silvestre H. Bello III suspended for 15 days the processing of all new applications foOECs “in view of persistent reports of illegal recruitment activities, including direc
hires  (sic); and in order to protect to public from pernicious activities of unscrupulous  individuals preying on Filipinos desiring to work overseas”.

According to Nicon F. Fameronag, Lilac Center president, the order could affec
thousands of OFWs who have gone througthe POEAs legal processes and upset 
their social  equilibrium. Many OFWs, he said, are dreaming of working abroad for a 
better life, and  the DOLE order abruptly, and without warning, cutshort this dream.

“This is a midnight policy. Besides, you dont burn a whole housbecause a part of 
it is ridden with termites, Fameronag, a former DOLE undersecretary for 
employment, said of  the DOLE order.

Fameronag said it this kind of policy and the manner and timing such policy was  cooked up and issued that upsets businessmen and foreign investors in the country.

“There was certainly lack of consultation on the order. The suspension decision should  have been best left to the province of the Governing Board of the Philippine Overseas  Employment Administration whosmembers, including the workers and licensed  agencies representatives, were apparently not consulted,” Fameronag said.

“I will not bsurprised if some legal eagles will challengSec. Bello’s order before 
the  courts because its basis is flimsy at best,” Fameronag said.

He explained that if the DOLE is so concerned about illegal recruitment activities, 
what it  should do is to empower and enable more the POEA’s anti-illegal recruitment branch (AIRB) by assigning it more personnel and money 
so it can  intensify and expand its anti-illegal recruitment campaign.

The Lilac Center executive also doubted that the DOLE can get to the root cause 
of illegal recruitment in only 15 daysthe life span of D.O. 185.