Saturday, February 26, 2011

Alter Space Advocacy: From Digital Into Reality

"Save water, conserve energy, and care for nature." These are just some of the common phrases we hear from environmentalists, eco-activists, and its supporters. But how does the common man absorb this message?

Are they indeed encouraged to save water, conserve energy and care for nature? How much of it converts to actual practice and serious at that?

A new Facebook game called Alter Space recently pushed it with an extra creative notch.

The Social Media Phenomenon

When I attended the 3rd Internet and Mobile Marketing Summit (IMMAP) in 2009, there were already 24 million Filipinos using the Internet. Now, with a population of almost a hundred million, Internet users in the Philippines have risen to about 27 million, or roughly 27% of Filipinos. That is a big jump from about 7 years ago when we only had about 5 miilion Internet users then.

Alter Space Revealed

Indeed, the power of online influence is now truly significant. And this is what new Facebook game Alter Space tapped to further spread its message and advocacy of carbon footprint awareness to the increasing number of online citizens. For those new to the term, 'carbon footprint' is basically the carbon emmission of everything you do.

As Aboitiz Power Chief Reputation Officer Sebastian Lacson said in a recent press conference, they choose the Internet as medium to forward their advocacy because they believe it is "very effective and can spread very quickly."
Aboitiz Power Chief Reputation Officer Sebastian Lacson
Aboitiz Power AVP Ms. Ria Calleja
Alter Space Developers & Aboitiz Power Executives
 Their three main objectives are:
  1. Educate people about Carbon Footprint
  2. Make them realize the effects of carbon footprint
  3. Promote Filipino culture
If you have tried playing the Alter Space Facebook game application, it mimics real world and actual life scenarios of regular individuals from as simple as staying at home, going to the park, or eating at a restaurant. It shows that in almost all the things we do, there is an equivalent energy consumed and carbon emitted as a result of that activity.
In totality, you might recognize that Alter Space encourages the player to be conscious of the amount of carbon footprint with each activity. Handy tips and trivia about energy conservation and related topics are shown from time to time making it very educational to its 17,000 online users to date. In fact, this can suit as a valid academic activity that can be adopted in schools as well.

Moreover, being a Filipino-made product, they promote patriotism by including Filipino customs and ideologies in the game setup such as the local game of 'sungka,' 'dirty ice cream,' and 'pamaypay' (native fan). Check it out at

Tagaytay Nature Trip

In a recent trip to Tagaytay's Nature's Spa with blogger friends, we got to re-appreciate nature and its beauty. I was reminded how relevant they are to our lives and that we are now starting to feel one of the effects of carbon emissions which is global warming.
Nature Spa in Tagaytay
This was followed by a sailing activity in the afternoon at nearby Taal Lake.
Hobie 610
This also reminded me that environment protection is not only limited to trees, the forest, and its greeneries, but also the valuable water resources that the 7,107 island of the Philippines have.
Making It Into Reality: The Change That Starts with You

Did you know that aside for being the texting capital of the world, the Philippines is also making a mark in the social networking aspect? We are now the world's fifth largest country in Facebook at almost 21 million registered users as of January 2011 statistics.

Specially focusing on the youth with endorsers Alodia Gosengfiao and Anton Del Rosario of Azkals, the creators of Alter Space knew this and hope to instill the awareness of carbon footprint in our environment, to our world, and its future. More than just verbal campaigns and catchy slogans, they believe that the Facebook game application will effect enough conviction to the players, both believers and otherwise, to act upon it or at least be aware of the carbon footprint produce in many things they do.
Alter Space Endorser Azkal's Anton Del Rosario
Of course, this does not mean for us to sloth around and do nothing for the sake of reducing carbon footprint, but to be more efficient in the things we do and exert that conscious effort in doing our part. Even in our own little ways we can reduce the carbon emissions.

The creators of Alter Space believe that "the power to change starts with you," and each of the 21 million Facebook users in the Philippines. Make this digital advocacy affect your reality!

Anton Del Rosario

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