Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Lolo Luis' Missing Case Solved: The Good Side of Social Media

Filipinos all over Facebook has sure encountered this photo of an old woman with a paper on her back detailing  her missing husband, Luis Matias. We call her Lola Aurelia. (Lola means grandmother in Tagalog, can also be referred to an old woman.) Lolo Luis has been missing since November 10. Yesterday, this photo by Reddie Js has spread on Facebook like wildfire, with almost 60,000 shares as of this writing.

The Power of Street Photography

Without this photo, Lolo Luis' missing case wouldn't be known to many. This is one of the reasons why it's totally absurd to prohibit shooting on public places. Street photography, unlike studio photography, captures real everyday events. Just last November 11th there was a campaign protest called "Bawal Mag-shoot Dito" (Shooting is not allowed here) by 100 Filipino photographers against the 'No-Shoot rule' implemented at Rizal Park. (Rizal is our National Hero.) Read more about it here.

The Power of Social Media

The past few months, we had encountered this chaotic case of Christoper Lao which was made possible by traditional media and social media combined into one cyberammunition of name-callings and reputation disintegration. 

In addition to that, these past few days many Filipinos and Facebook users all over the world have encountered pornography posts/spam on their news feed, which was made possible by their disregarding of what Facebook shows once they liked or commented on a public post, and by clicking suspicious links. Of course, people subscribed to them (including their friends) will see their activity which is posted to the news feed and is open for another activity.

But this time, the power of social media has been used for good. 

Seeing the photo and after reading the description, the photo of Lola Aurelia has engulfed me with pity and wishing to hear some good news in a few days. Eventually, it turned out that the good news arrived after a day. Lolo Luis has been found.

The Power of Traditional Media

And so after the photo has gone viral on the Internet, the television media has grabbed their opportunity to help. On the video below you can watch how they found Lolo Matias. (Hope the video won't be deleted on YouTube.)

See how the combined power of street photography, social media, and traditional media can be used for good. Humanity can be evil sometimes, but it always has its good side.

NOTE: I've read some conspiracy theories on the photo post suggesting that this event was manipulated or framed just to get a cool story be published. If you would ask me, I've seen many shared posts on Facebook which sounds suspicious and totally hoax but I guess no 60,000 people are inhumane enough to think that this event was unreal.

Photo of Lola Aurelia by Reddie Js.
Video footage from GMA TV's 24 Oras.


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