The Gist


The private sector has launched a campaign inciting a sense of solidarity among businesses and consumers to help boost the economy in the time of the pandemic. But the campaign does not sit well with Filipinos online, reacting that the video, however heartwarming, is yet another shot at "resilience porn" than a call for change.

/ 13 October 2020

As the recession has intensified its grip on the nation, and on the world, and week after week, we see businesses announce closure online, the coronavirus continues to be an existential threat to the economy and to our collective human experience. Many corporations have never had to shrink on workforces or reduced operating hours to adjust quarantine measures, but this is a new experience that many owners have to face.

Aside from complying with government guidelines, companies also have to come up with safer solutions to protect its people, safely serve consumers, and the community. By keeping themselves educated and applying recommended protocols from various sectors such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Labor and OSHA, the campaign, as heralded by its two-minute video, seeks to power business owners to help limit the spread of COVID-19, ensuring everyone’s safety, while keeping jobs. The recently launched campaign video features various private sectors and a number of brand crossovers unimaginable, coming together in an initiative to implement safety measures to adapt to the new normal.




“At this point in managing the COVID-19 pandemic, balancing health and the economy is our main priority. This is why we are pushing for the gradual and safe reopening of the economy. In line with the spirit of the campaign, we can only move forward by supporting and keeping one another safe while protecting lives and livelihoods,” said Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon M. Lopez in a statement. 

The campaign has since partnered with a number of corporations, brands, and one of the biggest companies in the country, including Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Alliance Global Group, Jollibee Foods Corporation, McDonald’s Philippines, Goldilocks, BDO, BPI, Metrobank, Paymaya, Alaska, Champion, Century Pacific Food Inc., Coca Cola Philippines, Oishi LIwayway Marketing Corp., PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble Philippines, RFM Corporation, Unilever, Petron/San Miguel Corporation, Shell, Ayala Malls, Filinvest Development Corporation, Robinsons Malls, SM Supermalls, Globe Telecom, Smart Communications, Angkas and Foodpanda.

As businesses prepare to reopen, it is necessary to highlight that consumers play a vital role in this campaign, where every individual has a responsibility to follow rules, monitor their own health, and keep track of places they come in contact. After months of quarantine, this joint effort hopes to bring back that sense of normalcy, allowing people to go out, shop around, and travel to places, while not having to fear much about the virus. All of this, as the campaign aims to spread, not only boosts economic recovery, but also serves to fan the fire of resilience, hope, and inspiration to all.

But even as businesses, big and small, came together, and many more were urged to join in the advocacy and several netizens reacted positively to the commercial and the initiative, in general, a huge slice of reactions on the Internet decried the campaign and called it out as yet another ploy to push people to spend and risk their lives for the sake of the economy–with capitalistic motives hidden under the guise of “resilience porn”, and a sense of accountability shifting once again to the citizens and away from the government, whose policies and action plans to serve the common good where nowhere to be found.

With this, we ask, how does this particular campaign impact you? Should we already be discussing economic recovery when cases continue to spike even as we are now officially seven months in the community quarantine? Is it really too much to ask for a clearer action plan than just a sugary message that things will be okay?

For more information, visit the Ingat Angat campaign website.


Additional text by Leo Balante