‘Trabahong tamad’: Salceda wants consultant fired for ‘plagiarizing’ tourism ad
MANILA, Philippines — Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda has called out the creators of the country’s newest tourism promotional advertisement anew after it was revealed that stock footage was used to create the video.
In a statement, Salceda — who initially complained about the Mayon Volcano exclusion from the campaign — said it was a “trabahong tamad” or a lazy job done by the ad creators.
“The whole mess with the contractor using stock footage in the promotional video proves my earliest point about the DOT (Department of Tourism) either apologizing to Albay or firing the consultant,” Salceda said on Sunday.
“Clearly, the exclusion of Mayon and other tourist attractions intrinsic to the Philippine brand was just a symptom of ‘trabahong tamad’ that is now evident to everyone,” he added.
Salceda claps back at Lagman’s scathing letter
Salceda seemingly retaliated against his fellow provincial lawmaker, Albay 1st District Rep. Edcel Lagman, who disparagingly remarked in a letter to Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco that the former’s complaints regarding Mayon were just a “political soundbite.”
Lagman also labeled Salceda’s concerns parochial, noting that there are other ways that the DOT can show its dedication to promoting Mayon Volcano.
According to Salceda, legitimate concerns should not be easily swept aside and tagged as politicizing.
“One lesson here is not to dismiss legitimate concerns as “political soundbites” but to listen, consult, and discuss. The country’s branding is reflective of our identity and aspirations as a people: what’s wrong with wanting to be represented well in that?” Salceda asked.
“I hope all these issues can be rectified before the budget hearings. Otherwise, I have a duty to ask questions,” he added.
After Salceda called out the advertisement for not including Mayon Volcano, Frasco assured him that the new campaign is just the start — a mood-setting video — and that Albay itself will be featured in other tourism promos.
However, Salceda said “plagiarizing” is not how to start a new tourism campaign.
“Since the DOT will not be apologizing (because the video, supposedly, is just a first installment), the way forward seems clear. The first video was supposedly a ‘mood video’, according to the contractor. For something as critical as an entire country’s image, you don’t ‘set the mood’ with plagiarism,” he said.
“As for the branding itself, the slogan is a creative decision best left to experts, and its usefulness will be proven ultimately in tourist numbers. We will know soon enough if it works. So, I don’t want to comment on it. But the way the slogan was launched by this contractor — my goodness,” he added.
Over the weekend, political blogger Sass Rogando Sasot pointed out that DDB Philippines, the ad agency that created a one-minute and 45-second promotional video for the new tourism campaign — Love the Philippines — used footage from foreign areas.
The clips from the said video, which supposedly aims to showcase the Philippines’ tourist attractions, were purportedly stock footage from Thailand, Indonesia, United Arab Emirates — all accessible in Storyblocks, a rapid video creation platform.
DDB Philippines has apologized to the DOT. The department meanwhile assured the public that an investigation is ongoing.