Cautionary Tale for Online Wallet payments

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Gist: When paying via your online wallets then make sure to take a screenshot before payment.

My internet provider bill (from PLDT) is nearing its due date and I was paying the last few month’s bills via my wallet to take advantage of the crypto coin “cashback” feature. I logged into my Android app and saw that I still have more than 6000 pesos in the wallet which is sufficient to pay for my internet bill. I proceeded with paying for the bill using the saved template and adjusted the amount to Php1900.

Upon submission, the app encountered an error that it didn’t receive a response from the provider and to try again a few minutes later. When I refreshed the app home page my wallet balance dropped to Php4200 but there is no transaction listed for it. I waited for 5 minutes to refresh the Maya app but everything remained the same.

The Maya chatbot is useless and doesn’t want to connect me to a human helpdesk agent so I called up the Maya hotline. The agent who answered it is helpful enough but she does not have any ability to view my prior day balance to confirm the deduction. She can only confirm that there is no new transaction logged to my account since what she saw is the last payment I made a few days back. She suggested to call the PLDT hotline instead and to email to do a deeper check and to request for an online receipt if needed. It has been 2 days and yet there is still no response on my request except for the automated ticket number.

I dont have any tangible proof other than this claim so it will be very easy for Maya to say it didn’t happen. This is a very costly lesson in proper documentation, and a very negative experience that will prevent or at least minimize my use of the Maya payment system in the future.

Turn around

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SLA – the maximum amount of time that a task can be put off that the requester cannot contest except to raise the cost by involving higher-paid individuals to increase the imaginary priority shown to external users.

Sometimes misunderstood to be the time needed to require work to be completed.

AnalogClockAnimation1 2hands 1h in 6sec

Imagine This

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Imagine an environment where standards are strictly enforced.
Where security is of paramount importance.

Now imagine that at the expense of productivity or rational reasoning.
Where compliance is dictated by the contents of a clipboard checklist.

Sandro Botticelli - La Carte de l'Enfer

Welcome to Hotel California.

Whose mess is it?

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Food for thought for operations people.

If you are doing support work and using a ticketing system that doesn’t provide a link or information to contact the administrators then you become responsible for connecting that request to the administrators. You cannot expect end users who are twice-removed from the administrator team to have the means to contact them directly. The very least you can do is to ensure the concerns are forwarded to the next link in the chain and avoid shoving the end user to fumingly face a brick wall when they are given the curt response of “it is not my scope”.

Image courtesy of

On giving up

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Sometimes giving up is the only option. Shelving it. Lowering the priority. Putting it in the backburner for a later time.

Give up with the hope that someday might be a better day to try again; that on that fateful day you will have the numbers and support to cross the pitiful gap that for all it’s worth could be the chasm between two continents.

He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight
– one of the essentials of victory, Sun Tzu, Art of War


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Gusto kong manalo sa Lotto
Hindi dahil ayoko ng magtrabaho
Kungdi dahil medyo sawa na ako
Magpaliwanag paulit-ulit sa mga tao.

Maikli na nga siguro ang aking pasensya
Marahil sadyang dahil tumatanda na
Kahit gustong idaan sa diplomasya
Kahit paimpit nais kong magmura.


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The camera phone might not have captured it properly but the picture below is meant to capture the dusk of a stormy day.

Tamang pananalita: Top One at Top Three

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Tagalugin ko para mas magkaintindihan.

Kung sa pagmamalaki sa iyong anak ay ipinangangalandakan mong siya ay “Top One” ay ibig sabihin ay TANGA KA. Oo matalino ang anak mo pero kitang-kita na di nagmana sa iyo. Mabuti na lang mareremedyuhan pa yang katangahan na yan. Maipapayo ko sumabay ka pag grammar ang lesson. Mas mahaba lang sabihin pero subukan mong sabihin na “Top of the class” ang iyong anak. Ito ay isang tanggap na idiyoma (idiom) para sa isang nangunguna sa pangkat.

Ngayon kung sakaling di naman siya ang nangunguna pero kasama sa grupo ng mga nangununa sa kanilang klase ay huwag mo naman sabihing halimbawa na “top three”  ang anak mo. Hindi naman triplets yan kasi di mo naman sinabing “mga” anak mo. Third of his/her class ang tamang pananalita na kailangang gamitin, o kung ano mang pwesto ang kinabibilangan nya. Pwede din sabihin na “kasama siya sa top five” kung gusto mong magpakumbaba at hindi tahasang sabihin kung ano ang pwesto ng anak mo (pwedeng siya ang una o pang-lima). Pero pakiusap, itigil na sana sa ikasampu. Kung lagpas na sa sampu ay wag ng ipagpilitan para lang makapagyabang. Suportahan mo na lang ang anak mo kung gusto nyang umabot at mapabilang sa “top ten” ng klase nya.

Huwag din sanang tawaging valedictorian o salutatorian ang inyong mga anak kung di naman pa siya graduating o gumradweyt ng elementary o high school. Meron lang iilang lebel o baitang ng pag-aaral na pwedeng gamitan nito. Saka ang valedictorian ay yung taong nagbibigay ng talumpating pamamaalam (valedictory coming from the root word valedictum o “pertaining to leave-taking”) habang ang salutatorian naman ang nagbibigay ng talumpating panimula (salutation). Nagkataon lamang na sa Pilipinas ang top two sa nakuhang grade point average ang binibigyan ng karangalan na gawin ang mga ito.

Ulitin natin:

  • Top One : para kang tanga pag ginagamit mo ito. Nangunguna sa laban na iisa lang ang kasali? Parang solitaryo lang ba?
  • Top three : gagamitin lang kung gusto mong ipatungkol ng sabay-sabay dun sa tatlong pinakamataas.
  • Valedictorian at Salutatorian : ginagamit lang sa mga miyembro o naging miyembro ng isang graduating class. Pwedeng isang mag-aaral, guro o kahit sinong bisita.

Ngayon kung estudyante ka pa pero gumagamit ka ng ganitong pananalita ay maipapayo ko na: anak mag-aral-aral din paminsan-minsan at hindi puro facebook at computer games lang ang inaatupag.


Smartbro Wimax sucks a little less tonight

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Instead of having no internet connection I have a very slow internet. How slow?

— ping statistics —
53 packets transmitted, 29 received, 45% packet loss, time 52000ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 4908.713/18702.236/32208.306/7853.188 ms, pipe 33

Yes, that is 5-32 seconds latency! If the site is not familiar to you that is what is being resolved by “”. That abysmal speed is leagues better than having no internet connection, right? It is as savory as like having a view of the beach from the safety of your prison cell.

I am Human

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I woke up on the wrong side of the bed today so I need to vent out and nitpick… 🙂

I want to reiterate the advocacy of minimizing the use of the word “resources” when referring to members of your team.

A resource is a finite, inanimate stock or tool. A hammer is a tool therefore it is a resource. My time and skills are resources but I don’t want to suffer the indignity of being categorized as a tool. I am neither a tool nor a resource; and I would appreciate not being abstracted to the same level as a computer. Computers are dumb, they can only follow instructions.

Use FTE to refer to the workload unit, but use team member, colleague, personnel or employee when referring to the human being. Respect the person doing the work. The IT industry may be being overhauled and optimized with automation, but this remains a creative industry and not a place for human automatons. Each member is unique and brings something special to the table.


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