The wRap


Your World in 10 - August 24, 2012 Edition

New Chief Justice

1. Sereno breaks many barriers



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President Benigno Aquino III appointed 52 year old Maria Lourdes Sereno the 24th chief justice of the country. She breaks barriers of gender and age: she is the youngest ever appointed to the post and the first woman. She replaces ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona, who was impeached and convicted on May 29 for failing to disclose P183 million in his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth.

Read more on Rappler



Nation in Mourning

2. Malacanang wake of Robredo Friday to Saturday



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The body of the late Interior & Local Governments Secretary Jesse Robredo leaves Naga and arrives in Manila Friday for a two-day wake to allow the public in the capital to mourn the reformer. His plane crashed Saturday, August 18 off the coast of Masbate. His aide-de-camp P/Supt Jun Abrazado is the sole survivor. The two pilots, 60 year old Jessup Bahinting and 21 year old Kshitiz Chand, also died in the crash. Robredo's body was recovered nearly three days later on Tuesday, Aug. 21. Robredo leaves a legacy of corruption-free public service that elevated citizen participation in governance and eradicated the illegal numbers game jueteng. He received a Ramon Magsaysay Award, Asia's Nobel, for 18 years as Naga City mayor. In 1999, Naga was recognized as the most improved city in Asia.

Read more at Rappler



#HealthAlert

3. Leptospirosis code blue alert for hospitals in Metro Manila



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After floods, beware leptospirosis, a bacterial disease that comes from direct contact with water contaminated with the urine of infected rats. There were about 2,000 cases of leptospirosis after typhoon Ondoy in 2009. On Thursday, the health department placed all government hospitals in Metro Manila under Code Blue Alert after 20 government hospitals in the area reported 783 leptospirosis cases. 34 people have died. Code Blue means hospitals should prepare manpower and logistics for between 20 to 50 patients. The incubation period for leptospirosis is between 5 to 10 days, normally triggered by heavy flooding. The DOH urges Filipinos who develop a fever after wading in flood water to see a doctor immediately. If caught in the early stages, an antibiotic can be enough. If allowed to fester, it could lead to complications like kidney failure.

Read more on Rappler

Know of any cases of leptospirosis? Map it here on #HealthAlert



Violence

4. UN monitors leave as violence escalates in Syria



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Violence increases in and near Damascus in what activists say is the heaviest fighting in Syria's capital this month. It coincides with the pullout of UN monitors because of deteriorating conditions and the failure to renew their mandate. The government of President Bashar al-Assad is determined to quell rebel troops that began around 18 months ago. The US and Britain warn Syria against using chemical weapons to try to regain control. The UN Security Council set a ministerial meeting in New York for August 30, the day the last UN observers are due to leave Syria. The UN has said international efforts to significantly reduce violence and curb Syria's use of heavy weapons have failed.

Read more on Al Jazeera English.



Uncertainty

5. Euro zone, reports send shiver through global markets



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After three months of uneven but upward movement, the Dow Jones Industrial Average posted its largest drop in a month. It's the fourth in a row, making many question whether the short rally has ended. By last Friday, the Dow had climbed nearly 10% from a 2012 low and was close to its highest level since December 2007. Thursday's drop triggered fears and reminded investors globally how fragile the gains were. Markets in Europe dropped Thursday and Asian markets in Friday dropped in early trade.

Read more on the Wall Street Journal.



#NotoPlagiarism

6. Why does Sotto's plagiarism matter?



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Writer Miguel Syjuco writes a scathing indictment of Senator Tito Sotto's plagiarism from at least 3 blogs for this anti-RH speech delivered two weeks ago. He outlines why he believes "Filipinos have a proud history of plagiarizing" and hits Soto and his staff for their the avoidance of responsibility and accountability. Rappler's editor-at-large Marites Vitug does a video commentary explaining the toll these actions will take on ideas of honesty and integrity.

Read Syjuco's critique and watch Vitug's vlog - all on Rappler.



New Age Content

7. Is Globe looking for a media partner?



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It's no secret that Manuel Pangilinan's strategy is convergence, set on acquiring media assets to give PLDT not just the infrastructure but also the content that will travel on the highways it owns. Now Ayala-led Globe Telecom, Inc. joins the conversation - saying it is considering expansion into "new age" content providers - which may include a media partner - to add to its traditional portfolio of services. Globe president Ernest Cu said Globe needs to offer relevant content to its mobile subscribers. However, Cu stressed that Globe is interested in content that's different from what traditional broadcasting companies offer.

Read more from Rappler.



Missiles

8. US plans defense expansion in Asia



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The United States is planning a major expansion of missile defenses in Asia, part of the Obama administration's new defense strategy to transfer resources to the Asia-Pacific region after a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan. US officials say the build-up is designed to counter threats from North Korea, but could also deal with increasingly aggressive moves from China on the South China Sea. At this point, plans call for a new radar in southern Japan and perhaps another in Southeast Asia "tied to missile-defense ships and land-based interceptors."

Read more in the Wall Street Journal.



Technology

9. What's happening to the women in Google's inner circle?



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A former Google executive tells the New York Times that the number of women in Google's inner leadership circle is decreasing as women fall by the wayside or are passed over for promotion. The latest defection is 37 year old Marissa Mayer, the first female engineer who ran Google's search, its most profitable business. In 2010, Google insiders say she was assigned a new job largely seen as a demotion, paving the way for her move to Yahoo as its CEO earlier this year. Google now says it will use algorithms to identify women to bolster its leadership ranks.

Read more on the New York Times.



Twitter

10. MVP neutralizes new "threat" of social media and joins Twitter



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It's not new that Manuel Pangilinan is pursuing a convergence strategy, uniting his telecoms business with media. MediaQuest Holdings, a subsidiary of PLDT's Beneficial Trust Fund, now owns TV5, Cignal TV and parts of Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Star and Business World. Now he tackles a new "threat": OTT or over-the-top content, which include social media like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. He says he wants to "merge telcos as a delivery system with OTT players as content providers." He also says utlities Meralco and Maynilad will unveil a new prepaid metering service that can customize and recommend customer preferences. At the same time, it will gather data about consumer behavior and habits for a new user analytics system. He ended his speech to the IMMAP 2012 by announcing his new Twitter account parodying the hit song social media made popular, Call Me Maybe: "Hey, I just met you - and this is crazy. But here's my Twitter, follow me, maybe?"

Read more on Rappler