Project Watch: Tourism Online Database at P97.1 Million

If there is one thing that online communications taught us, it is that you can do things cheaply. So why is the Department of Science and Technology proposing to spend P97.1 million (that’s a little over US$ 2 million) to build a tourism online database?

Granted we do not know the details of this project, but if the goal is to “build an online tourism database for Sagada and Banaue” and to “provide the medium for digital (travel) transactions directly from consumers to service providers” surely they can do it for much much less, say P500,000. Maybe P1 million to be a bit more generous. Boy, do we smell a fish?

From Sunstar Baguio:
Internet link for Sagada, Banaue proposed

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Weird News Roundup

WEIRD. Was Cordillera Tourism Director Purificacion Molintas misquoted in this news report or is she simply clueless? You can read the report here, but here’s the questionable quote:

Our main focus at the moment will be the Ifugao rice terraces areas and the Sagada Caves in Mountain Province where the centuries-old mummies are kept, she said.

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Outside Cordi: Igorots in Rizal

Over the years, some of our kailiyans settled in Cainta, Rizal and named their settlement the Igorot Village. Apparently, this village is now being listed as a tourist attraction. Nothing wrong with that really. And it’s good that the contributions of the Igorots in their community are getting recognized. But here’s a description written by someone with pre-conceived notions about Igorots. From Philtravelcenter:

Igorot Village
The Village covers one and a half hectares and is situated within the residential area of Valley Golf which is sloping downward the hill. There are several clusters of semi-modern houses covered by iron roofs which house Igorot families who settled in the area turned it into a traditional Igorot Village with the support of the local government. An authentic Igorot Village within the heart of Cainta provides tourists a glimpse of the culture and lifeways of the Cordillera people.

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Gina Dizon on iSagadas vs. Tourist

Well, we wouldn’t want this blog to be Sagada-centric but this article by Gina Dizon on the conflict between iSagadas and a tourist might serve as an example to other municipalities as more and more foreigners are settling in the Cordilleras. It would be interesting to see how this problem will be resolved.

Angry Sagada folk want tourist out; declare him persona non grata
By Gina Dizon

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Movie Review: Batad sa Paang Palay

The movie is about an Ifugao boy and his all-consuming desire to own a pair of shoes. Honestly, I find it a bit hard to be drawn into the story and to sympathize with the boy mainly because I kept thinking, “Hey kid, it’s 2006. You are from the Cordilleras where there are ukay-ukay/wagwag stores in every corner. Surely you can buy a used pair of shoes for P50.”

So I must admit that for most of the movie, my mindset was like, “What is the fuss about? Take the kid to an ukay ukay store and be done with it. It’s not like he is dreaming of a pair of shoes worth P5,000.” I might have been willing to suspend my disbelief if the movie was set in the ’80s where owning a pair of shoes was more of a financial challenge. Or if the boy was dreaming of something that is harder to buy now, say a cellphone or a computer.

Having said that, I would still say that the movie is good and is much much better than the mindless crap that local movie producers are making these days. However, I might have been better off if I just bought a VCD copy of the film since digital movies like Batad really do not project well in movie screens. [Based on experience, much of the color in digital movies gets lost in in the big screen so they sadly end up looking lifeless and grayish.]

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