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Creamline sweeps way to 7th PVL crown, survives Choco Mucho

December 17, 2023 10 p.m.

Before a new record crowd, Creamline is back on the Premier Volleyball League throne, repelling a game Choco Mucho side in an epic 22-25, 25-20, 29-27, 24-26, 15-12 victory that sent the Cool Smashers’ legion of fans into frenzy but left the equally fervent Flying Titans’ supporters in disappointment.

Pushed and tested to the limit by the Flying Titans, the Cool Smashers showed their championship poise for the nth time, battling back from three points down in the decider with a scorching windup that has marked the team’s rise to women’s volley fame.

Coach Sherwin Meneses’ steadfast trust on the team’s bench players throughout the finals series highlighted the depth and strength that propelled Creamline to the All-Filipino crown via another title sweep.

His tactical substitutions in the fifth set paid off as Michele Gumabao, Pangs Panaga and Alyssa Valdez delivered in the clutch while the Flying Titans’ starters crumbled in the face of the Cool Smashers’ fightback after a fine display of guts and hunger in the fourth and an early run in the fifth to seize a 6-3 advantage.

But no lead is safe against Cool Smashers and the Flying Titans learned it the most bitter way as Creamline roared back to tie it at 9 on a costly Regine Arocha service miscue. Gumabao and Panaga then scored two points apiece and Valdez, who didn’t see action in the second to fourth sets, came out virtually fresh in the decider, firing five points, the last two dashing whatever hopes the Flying Titans had in pursuit of a first win in 11 face-offs with the Cool Smashers.

Creamline earlier won the series’ opener, 25-23, 19-25, 26-24, 25-22.

Half of the crowd of 24,459 fans at the Smart Araneta Coliseum, a new record in Philippine volleyball, erupted in deafening roars as Bernadette Pons wrapped up the crucial third set battle after a Creamline successful defense on Sisi Rondina’s power blast.

But the other half also burst into screams as Choco Mucho forced the decider and hollered more as the Flying Titans raced to a 6-3 lead in the fifth in a celebration that however proved short-lived.

The mammoth crowd surpassed the 22,843 fans who watched the UAAP Season 78 finals between La Salle and Ateneo in 2016.

“It’s the love for each other. Ayaw naming masayang ang pagod namin,” said a teary-eyed Jema Galanza, who clinched game’s top honors with a 21-point performance. “Our mindset was to play it one point at a time, hindi nakukuha sa mabilisan ang lahat.”

Truly, the Cool Smashers worked for every play and for every point to get back into the match with Valdez bucking a couple of foiled attacks with three straight hits and Risa Sato scoring on a quick attack and Galanza adding two more hits to force an 8-all count in the fifth.

But it was all worth the challenge as Creamline completed its amazing 15-game sweep of the season-ending conference, their second All-Filipino crown in the season as the Cool Smashers added another chapter to the franchise’s storied success in women’s volley.

It was Creamline’s seventh PVL championship – and a second straight All-Filipino feat after turning back Petro Gazz in sudden death last March. More importantly, its romp mirrored the team’s Open Conference successful title-retention drive in 2019 where the Cool Smashers won all their 20 games.

Creamline also scored a perfect campaign in the last year’s Open Conference.

Tots Carlos topscored for Creamline with 26 points while Pons and Panaga came up with 14 and 11 points, respectively.

Valdez wound up with eight markers and Gumabao pumped in five clutch points and Lorie Roberto added four points in the two-hour, 40-minute victory that also dashed Choco Mucho coach Dante Alinsunurin’s hopes for a double after steering National U to a stirring victory over fancied Cignal in the Spikers’ Turf Invitational Conference finals last Friday.

Rondina sizzled with a personal-high 33 points, including 29 on attacks, and went on to capture the MVP honors, while Maddie Madayag and Kat Tolentino finished with 16 and 15 points, respectively. Bea de Leon, Caitlyn Viray and Arocha scored six points apiece.


TikTok enhances safety, transparency for Filipino community with new initiatives

7:01 p.m. July 16, 2023

TikTok, the world’s leading short-form video platform, is taking further steps to ensure a safer and more transparent platform for its Filipino community. In response to the evolving digital landscape and the rise of AI-generated content (AIGC), these initiatives are designed to maintain a secure environment, uphold community guidelines, and ensure users can trust the content they encounter on the platform.

Strengthening Community Guidelines Enforcement

As part of its ongoing efforts to safeguard its community, TikTok recently published its Q1 2024 Community Guidelines Enforcement Report. During this period from January 1 to March 31, 2024, TikTok removed 4.26 million videos in the Philippines for violations of its Community Guidelines. Of these, 99.7% were removed proactively, and 95% were taken down within 24 hours.

To further enhance transparency, TikTok updated its Community Guidelines in April to provide clearer rules and introduce new features that help creators understand and comply with policies. Available in English and Filipino, these guidelines include detailed definitions and outline moderation practices for features like Search, LIVE, and the For You feed, ensuring policies are clear and accessible to all users.

Advancing AI-Generated Content Transparency

In response to the increasing prevalence of AI-generated content, TikTok has implemented new measures for transparency. Since May, TikTok has automatically labeled AI-generated content uploaded from specific platforms. This initiative is part of a collaboration with MediaWise, a program of the Poynter Institute, and the Coalition for Content Provenance and Authenticity (C2PA), making TikTok the first video-sharing platform to adopt C2PA’s Content Credentials technology. These labels aim to provide users with clear context about the nature of the content they consume.

Educating the Community with Media Literacy Tools

To support its community in navigating AI-generated content and combating misinformation, TikTok is launching new media literacy resources. Developed in collaboration with experts, these resources are integral to TikTok’s broader strategy to enhance user understanding and foster a more informed community. As part of this initiative, TikTok has partnered with MediaWise to release 12 educational videos throughout the year. These videos aim to teach universal media literacy skills and explain how TikTok’s AI-generated content labels can help contextualize content. This partnership underscores TikTok’s commitment to educating its community and fostering a more informed user base.

Expanding AIGC Labeling Through Partnerships

Building on its efforts to ensure content transparency, TikTok has extended its auto-labeling capabilities for AI-generated content created on other platforms. By integrating the ability to read Content Credentials from C2PA, TikTok automatically recognizes and labels AI-generated content, with plans to expand this to audio-only content soon.

In the coming months, TikTok plans to attach Content Credentials to its content, ensuring transparency even when content is downloaded, allowing users to utilize C2PA’s Verify tool to identify AI-generated content and understand its creation details.

Driving Industry-Wide Adoption

In its mission to promote industry-wide adoption of Content Credentials, TikTok has joined the Adobe-led Content Authenticity Initiative (CAI). As the first video-sharing platform to implement Content Credentials, TikTok is at the forefront of encouraging transparent content practices across the industry. The gradual increase in auto-labeled AI-generated content on TikTok is expected to grow as more platforms adopt this technology, fostering a more transparent digital landscape.

For You Feed and Creator Code of Conduct

To further enhance safety, TikTok has introduced new standards that will temporarily restrict accounts that repeatedly violate content standards. These accounts and their content will be harder to find in search, with creators being notified and given the option to appeal.

Additionally, TikTok published a Creator Code of Conduct outlining the standards expected from creators involved in TikTok programs, features, events, and campaigns. This code reinforces TikTok’s commitment to maintaining a safe and inclusive platform.

Through these measures, TikTok continues to focus on helping its community, especially creators, understand its rules and enforcement methods to ensure a safer experience for its users. By embracing continuous innovation and collaboration, TikTok strives to create a secure and inclusive space for creativity and connection.

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SM Prime, DTI empower MSMEs with 83 SM mall spaces, training, mentorship

(L-R): SM Prime Chairman of the Executive Committee Hans Sy and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo Pascual

9:15 p.m. July 12, 2024

Good news for Micro-, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs)! SM Prime Holdings (SM Prime) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) solidified a partnership through a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) signing ceremony held on July 1 at the SM Prime Headquarters.

This collaboration empowers MSMEs with prime mall space in 83 SM Malls nationwide, aligning with the One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines program. Besides providing space, SM Prime offers MSMEs discounted booth rentals, training programs on product development, marketing, financial management, and mentorship opportunities with experienced business leaders.

SM Supermalls’ President Steven Tan (3rd from left) and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo Pascual (3rd from right) with (L-R): SM Supermalls’ Assistant Vice President for Operations Royston Cabunag, SM Supermalls’ Vice President for Operations Junias Eusebio, DTI Undersecretary for Micro-, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSME) Development Group Cristina Roque, and DTI-Bureau of Market Development, Promotions, and One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines Director Marievic Bonoan
Key signatories from SM and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) sign the Memorandum of Agreement.
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary for Micro-, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSME) Development Group Cristina Roque

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DTI National Food Fair celebrates local flavors at SM Megamall

8:26 p.m. July 11, 2024

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) successfully concluded the 10th National Food Fair at SM Megamall’s Megatrade Halls 1-3, held from July 3-7, 2024. This premier event showcased the rich flavors of the Philippines and empowered over 200 Micro-, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs).

Food enthusiasts enjoyed a bounty of fresh produce, regional specialties, and delectable treats from all corners of the country. Attendees had the opportunity to stock up on pantry staples, explore health-conscious options, and discover unique ingredients to elevate their cooking skills.

(L-R): Megatrade Hall’s Maite Quiogue, SM Supermalls’ Assistant Vice President for Operations Royston Cabunag, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary for Micro-, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSME) Development Group Cristina Roque, Guest of Honor Winnie Chua-Go, SM Megamall Assistant Vice President for Operations Christian Mathay, SM Supermalls’ Vice President for Corporate Marketing Grace Magno, DTI-Bureau of Market Development, Promotions, and One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines Director Marievic Bonoan, and SM Megamall Assistant Mall Manager Isabella Manjon

(L-R): Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary for Micro-, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSME) Development Group Cristina Roque, Guest of Honor Winnie Chua-Go, and DTI-Bureau of Market Development, Promotions, and One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines Director Marievic Bonoan

The 2024 Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Bagong Pilipinas National Food Fair brings together the best food and flavors from all 16 regions.

Fresh pomelos and other local fruits take center stage at the National Food Fair in Megatrade Hall.

A potential buyer gets ready to take home bottled Bicol Express and Laing at the 10th National Food Fair in SM Megamall.

Crispy, salty, and packed with nutrients —these water spinach chips are the perfect healthy snack.

Bottled honey and baked fruit crisps, all made with local ingredients.

Davao del Sur and Misamis Oriental’s chocolate products are crafted from premium cacao beans.

Quality golden salted eggs from Rizal.

A variety of coconut products from San Pablo, Laguna.

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