Two of us: Father and son capture the hearts of netizens

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 28, 2019   •   3041

Antonio Antoquia drives the bus everyday for a living. His usual route is Fairview-Alabang. Oftentimes he takes his 19-year-old son, Joshua, so his wife can sell coffee and eggs.

Marivic Ando Natividad was one his passengers. She was able to capture the special moment between a father and his son.

For Joshua, who is a child with special needs, it seemed like it was never about riches or fame. His great love and admiration for his father resonated until it was felt by thousands.

Everyone who saw the photo found a much needed oasis amid the chaos of everyday life.

“Mahal na mahal kita, (I love you very much)” Joshua said to his father during an interview with one of our reporters.

Antonio holds back his tears. Joshua is his little helper whenever he brings him to work.

“Hindi siya mahirap dalhin kasi uupo lang siya, (It is not difficult to care for him, he would just sit there)” Antonio said. “Pagdating namin sa Alabang ayusin niya iyan. Kunwari ito sinusuksok ng mga pasahero to ayusin niya iyan itali niya iyan. Kunin niya ang mga tiket, tapon niya dito marunong siya, (When we arrive in Alabang he sees to it that all the curtains are properly arranged and he will throw out all the tickets that were left behind).”

During days when Antonio is not accompanied by Joshua, he couldn’t help but worry. He will call home asking if Joshua had eaten or if he is doing okay. And just like how he misses Joshua, Joshua misses him as well.

“Kunyari bibiyahe ako ng Davao tatawag iyan, taltlong araw palang sasabihin niya Papa, uwi kana miss na miss na kita, (Whenever I travel to Davao, he will call. He will tell me how much he misses me even when I was just gone for three days)

Marivic saw how much Antonio and Joshua love each other. She was on her way to work. She recalled that Joshua was happily assisting Antonio. Antonio, in return, was happy to be assisted.

“He [the boy] was very happy, jolly and smiling at me all the time,” Marivic said. She added that the boy “knows all the bus stops and the roads,” and would shout the names every time a passenger gets off.

Marivic witnessed how the two laughed, talked, and had fun despite the heat, despite the traffic.

For Marivic, it inspired her to feel thankful for her father especially when Father’s Day is only two weeks away.

Antonio kept holding back his tears every time he talks about Joshua. He feels lucky to have a son like him. However, there is always fear in Antonio’s heart.

“Natakot ako kapag ako nawala, paano ito? Mahirap kasi ito mamaya magsawa mga kapatid nito. Kung saan ito kakalat-kalat kapag wala ako. Iyon ang kinakatakutan ko, (I fear that when am gone, what will happen to him? It will be difficult, what if his siblings will get tired caring for him. Sometimes, he wanders around when am gone. That’s my fear),” he said.

“Masasabi ko lang dito kay Joshua,” he adds. “Kahit ganito ito mahal na mahal ko talaga itong batang ito, sobrang pagmamahal ko dito. (All I can say to Joshua is that I love him very much. I have much love for him)(with reports from Joan Nano)

Embattled Facebook CEO Zuckerberg seeks to mend fences in Washington

Jeck Deocampo   •   September 20, 2019

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg met with lawmakers on Capitol Hill for a second day on Thursday (September 19) as part of an effort by the social media giant to mend its reputation as it faces a slew of government investigations.

Zuckerberg, who is also Facebook’s founder, also has meetings planned for Friday on Capitol Hill. Discussions on Wednesday with lawmakers focused mainly on election security and data privacy concerns, sources close to the meetings said.

A person briefed on the matter said Zuckerberg was also expected to hold meetings with the Trump administration. Facebook and the White House both declined to say if Zuckerberg would meet with President Donald Trump. (REUTERS)

(Production: David Shepardson, Scott Vaughan)

Facebook unveils new Portal video chat, TV streaming devices

Robie de Guzman   •   September 19, 2019

Facebook Inc. unveiled new models of its Portal video chatting devices on Wednesday (September 18), making the company’s first foray into TV streaming hardware but offering a limited selection of subscription services.

The launch comes as Facebook is trying to pivot toward more private forms of communication, after years of slowing user growth, data-sharing scandals and calls for change to its hands-off approach to content moderation.

The company is already one of the biggest global players in private messaging, with its WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram apps used by 2.4 billion people each month.

It is keeping the focus of its new Portal line on video calling, adding the capability for WhatsApp calls along with improvements to a wide-angle camera that keeps users in focus as they move about a room.

Facebook is also expanding Portal sales into countries including the UK, France and Australia, while lowering prices to more closely compete with industry-leading smart speakers from Amazon and Google that sell for under $100.

Standard models of the Portal, which ship on Oct. 15, will come in $129 and $179 versions. Portal TV will cost $149 and hit the shelves on Nov. 5.

Facebook is hoping the social nature of its products will be their selling point, allowing users to watch shows together while interacting via video call on the same screen.

“I think that in a couple years’ time, if you have a smart streaming device that doesn’t have a camera allowing you to video call people, you’re not going to have a competitive product,” said vice president of AR/VR Andrew Bosworth. “I think this is the killer feature for a device like this.”

Bosworth also touted privacy protections like local processing of smart features on the devices, which means most user data will not be sent back to Facebook servers.

But Portal TV offers only a few music apps and has limited options for TV programming, meaning it could face a stiff challenge in attracting consumers used to content-rich rivals like Apple TV, Netflix and Roku.

At a demonstration in San Francisco on Tuesday, the only way to stream shows appeared to be via Facebook’s Watch app. Executives said Portal TV would have Amazon’s Prime Video app loaded by the time it is available.

The company declined to say whether it had approached other content providers like HBO, Hulu or Disney.

Facebook does not disclose how many Portals it has sold since the device’s launch late last year, but hardware accounts for a tiny slice of the company’s total sales.

The social media giant makes less than 2 percent of its revenue from non-advertising sources. (Reuters)

Viral act of kindness sparks doubts on social media

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 13, 2019

“Kindness is not lost,” ÅcdhiRr Ailnv Diaz wrote on his Facebook post.

His post went viral with 197,000 reactions and 50,000 shares after he shared a story of a man suffering from Leukemia.

In his post, Diaz said he saw a man getting wheeled in by guards inside the train. He noticed that the guy was in pain whenever the train moves.

Another passenger approached the guy.

“In a weak voice he was apologetic thinking he was causing an odd scene, or causing discomfort by his presence,” Diaz said.

Later they found out the guy has stage 3 Leukemia. He was on his way to seek help from a media company to pay for his medical examination.

Passengers from that part of the train began chipping in P100 pesos.

“Before we reached the next station he had enough money for the lab test he needed, plus food and fare. The guys at the back called for a guard for assistance so he could go back to MaDocs [Manila Doctors Hospital],” Diaz recalled.

However, some netizens are claiming the guy was a fake and was only doing it for the money.

According to some netizens, the guy’s Leukemia story was just a fabrication and is only a part of his ‘budol-budol’ scheme. One netizen recalled a similar story.

But according to Diaz, he doesn’t have the capability to further investigate on the matter. He was just sharing what he saw and experienced.

“What I believe I shared was my experience of #Bayanihan, of people coming together to help someone in need. That is all I can say about that,” Diaz said.—AAC

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