An Open Letter to the Digital Filipino Club & IMMAP who Proposes a DTI Permit on Bloggers Holding Online & Offline Contest

UPDATE: As of August 4, 2011 1PMish

On the DTI Permit issue for Blog Contest: At the meeting today DTI Secretary Domingo said no need to secure permit if the contest prize is at the Php200,000 threshold for sponsored contest.  If over that amount  company/sponsor/manufacturer should secure a DTI permit.  NOT THE BLOGGER.  For blogger initiated contest as long as it doesn’t exceed the Php1M threshold amount, blogger need not secure a permit from DTI.  ‘Nuff said. In your face, bakla!

However, this will be the guideline for now until after 3 months when DTI studies the matter again.

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Dear Digital Filipino Club and IMMAP,

Good day!

Before anything else please take this letter with a grain of salt, I know you have good intentions somewhere but then again I am saying this as an individual, a blogger and a consumer at the same time.

First point:  Who appointed you to represent all bloggers in the country to hold discussion with a government entity?

I know you mean well and want to make bloggers/blogging legit by making it a “real profession” and/or “business” in the country and that your organization ” is proactive in finding a solution that will work to all parties concern” but then again you and your blogger members (if any and how many) does not even represent 10% of the blogger population in the country.   Who did you consult and how many are they? When did you hold the consultations and when do you plan on holding another consultation because I definitely want to take part on whatever discussion you may have.  Who appointed you to represent all of us?

Second point:  Who’s interest are you protecting by this initiative?

I seriously can’t understand your logic about suggesting bloggers to secure permits in holding online and offline contest even without the requirement for purchase.  As your post indicated “only registered businesses can run a sales promotion and get the necessary permits”.  Bloggers are not business and are not registered business.

If there is anyone who need to secure a permit, that is the business or the company who come to bloggers to host their promotions as it is their business or products we are promoting and not our blogs the, our blogs are just channels.

I’m quoting you on this: ” The intent is to protect the consumer and ensure that promotions are done compliant to guidelines. Selection of winners are done fairly and make sure they won’t be cheated.” 

Bloggers write according to their personal experience about the product or service they are referring to and promoting, ergo, bloggers are also consumers who are merely telling their readers, like suggesting to their friends what the best products are and their experience about it.  They don’t impose on other consumers to buy the products or try services  they are merely suggesting.  It is on the individual consumer to decide if they want to buy the product/service or not.

If there’s anyone who need to secure permits it is the businesses/companies who goes to blogs to their promotions that needs to get it not the individual blogger.

 

Third point: Not all blog contest/promotions are promoting products and services so securing a DTI permit is not necessary and an utter inconvenience.

You’ve been in the blogsphere for a time now and I’m sure you’ve been there and done that.  For a blogger who’s just starting holding contest/promotions to attract readers is a practice.  More often or not, they shell out personal money and personal items to be given away to their readers as prize.

Although I read during the heated reaction on Twitter with the trending hastag #DITblag a good suggestion regarding a blanket permit for any blogger who got intentions of holding blog/online contests.  That can work.

I also read a suggestion about hooking up the payment and processes through online channels, where payments can be made via online channel as well like Paypal.  Since blogs are “online work” and there was a reason why the blogger choose to “work online” then  they should also consider securing the necessarily permits online too so maybe that can fall under the E-Permit Guideliness you plan of creating.

If you are after consumer protection, think on this matter:  

When someone gives away a certain gadget for a raffle prize and that gadget breaks after a few weeks of using it, who should I blame about it, who should I run after to?  The blogger who gave away the prize or the company who manufactured the product?  When you win on a company raffle but the company is not in anyway raffling a company product and the prize you won is defective will you run after the company who raffled the product to replace it or run after the company who made the product?

I know I’ve missed out on some good points running in my head when I was emotional about this issue you raised but these three I mention are good points that need HONEST answers from you and your club.

When I was emotional I was against securing permit, but now I’ve contemplated on it,  let’s give it a try. With the above suggestions such as having 1) blanket/yearly permit and 2) securing the permit online can be done.

 

Finally, after all that I’ve said I believe the this DTI permit mumbo-jumbo is ripping money out of individual people, who are also consumers, instead of big companies and big sharks who are obviously doing magic with their tax declarations to avoid paying the right tax.

That suggestion you made about thinking of creative and new ways of promotions makes me think, are you suggesting everyone to go underground or you just want us to be join your clubs?

Kudos to you and your group.

Best,

Earthlingorgeous

How about you my fellow bloggers and the other readers of this post who might be affected with this  what’s your say about it? Any suggestions?

Stay gorgeous everyone!

P.S. Now I need my Nivea Q10 Anti-Wrinkle Care system ang wrinkles ko day! Naku!

UPDATE:
I suggest you to not present the paper/proposal you have immediately to the DTI representative you are going to talk with during the meeting on August 4, 2011. Instead ask the DTI what is their policy and what are their plans in case you have a wrong interpretation about it. Giving them this document will give them an idea to implement something they are not well equipped with (take for example their memorandum order about the GCs don’t have expiration date as establishments don’t acknowledge this memo!) and DTI is doing nothing about it. We would rather not have a memorandum or policy issued than have one that will be useless Since IMMAP and Digital Filipino admitted that the proposal was only for IMMAP members blogs you are right that once DTI issued a ruling even non-IMMAP member blogs are affected you should put this issue to rest as this will have a domino effect on many other things especially regulating blogs in the country.

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13 Comments

  1. I agree and I think being loud about your disagreement and opinion is already doing something. They said DTI never though about this until now. Grrrrrrrrrrrr!

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