Wednesday, July 24, 2013

#SMDaywithAMB: An evening with the Ambassador

Last week on July 16, some thirty or so netizens gathered at Commune in Makati City for some coffee and pastries in an intimate social media meetup with U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Harry Thomas. Organized by the Public Affairs Office of the U.S. Embassy in Manila in partnership with Tweetup Manila, the event was sort of an extension of the recently held Social Media Weekend.

I just had to have a souvenir shot with the Ambassador. Who knows, I just might attach it to my U.S. visa application! Haha!

Traffic and then later, a heavy downpour, did nothing to deter people from coming. People simply interacted with one another and I myself met a couple of new friends.

Heavy rain outside, nice and cozy inside.

When he arrived, Ambassador Thomas was introduced by Commune's Ros Juan. Thomas gave a few words, declaring that social media is important in a democracy. He said not everything in social media is true but at least it gives us a place to answer and explain. He then went around as eager netizens took turns in either chatting up the Ambassador, having their photos taken with him, or both.

Ambassador Harry Thomas as he was being introduced to the attendees.

Thomas: "Social media is important in a democracy."

Thomas meeting the youngest member of the small crowd, Chelle Gray's (of Google Development Group) son, who's often seen with his mom in events.

Thomas flanked by Chelle Gray, her son, and My Bibe.

Former IT auditor and now blogger and citizen advocate Jane Uymatiao having a chat with Thomas.

It looks like this guy's complaining to the Ambassador about why his visa application was denied, and the Ambassador in turn consoling him, but no, blogger Reggie Ramos is actually engaged in a conversation with Thomas about the gadgets the latter is using.

I noticed he was using a Samsung tablet. But then he said he also uses an iPad and just about everything else. It all depends on which one's fully charged.

In lieu of a traditional photo booth, attendees had to use their own devices but photos that have been uploaded to Instagram or Twitter using the official hashtag #SMDaywithAMB were automatically printed in seconds by this device here:

Snap, tag, and print it is!

PRNT allows for automatic printing of photos uploaded to Instagram and Twitter based on predefined hashtags, which is ideal for events, of course. Additional filtering to weed out unwanted photos can also be arranged beforehand. It's a pretty cool concept, I must say.

A sampling of PRNT's prints.

Events like these are so far from my line of work, and I am always glad to attend. Many thanks to Tweetup Manila, Commune, and of course, the U.S. Embassy in Manila.

1 comment:

  1. Please tell the ambassador the next time you meet him (when you visa is gonna be approved) that this orange shirt is not the correct type of clothing for a man with a title like that.
    Miss Margaret Cruzemark


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