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Philippines: Noynoying is the New Planking

Once fashionable and popular, planking has been eclipsed by a new sensation that has gripped many Filipinos around the globe. Planking was last year’s standard pose in youth and student protests against education budget cuts. Noynoying is the new planking in the Philippines.

Introduced in response to the President Noynoy Aquino regime’s inaction on oil price hikes, Noynoying is derived from the root word Noynoy, the nickname of Philippine President Benigno Aquino III. It is described as “doing nothing when in fact you have something to do.”

The pose first hit the public in last Thursday's (15 March) anti-oil price hike protest after government officials threatened to arrest those who will do planking during the protest actions. Despite efforts by the Palace to shrug off noynoying by saying it won’t have any effect on the public, it has in fact now gone viral online.

Noynoying Twitter Trends

Noynoying Twitter Trends

It has inspired a Facebook fan page which gained over 800 likes in a day and various internet memes. The hashtag #noynoying, Chantal’s Doodle points out, was top nine in the Philippines trends in Twitter the day the pose came out in public.

To counter the notion that the President is not doing anything on people’s concerns, the Philippine government Official Gazette released a photo of the President supposedly busy at work:

But netizens like the Momblogger has pointed out discrepancies, like the presence of TV and DVD remote controls, in one of the photos supposedly showing the president at “work.”

Freedomwall.net user Ian points out that President Noynoy has no one to blame for the growing popularity of noynoying but himself:

Portrayal of Noynoying made me remember the not so distant past. Partying while half of the nation is being ravaged by Sendong and reacted only when the public noticed of such inaction was making him the push-button president. He is the man who had written or worked the least while he was still in the Congress or the Senate. Being a chain smoker is not a good example and making a promise to stop when he’ll win the presidency but then finally broke it is a worst one.

Blogger Pat Mangubat of the New Philippine Revolution describes noynoying as the new form of governance:

What better way to describe what this government is doing than parody the very popular photo of Noynoy in a pensive mood? That photo, which was used during the 2010 elections, became somewhat a symbol, an attraction if you wish, to convince the middle classes that Pnoy is the “one”, a some sort of Pinoy Obama, who has the skills and the wherewithal to push this country into progress. Now, two years and a half into office, and nothing seems to move at all, except perhaps the cash registers of Big Business who is now cashing in on the somewhat catatonic state of this government.

Some tweet reactions on noynoying:

@ang_mungo: A word for not responding until after 10 days from a disaster or crisis, e.g. a super typhoon or a hostage crisis. What is…?

@vhongcrimson: lacierda: #noynoying di bebenta~ ~hellow? bentang benta kya ang #noynoying hahaha~ mura lng ksi to eh, at di pa nag tataas ng presyo~ ^^v

@vhongcrimson: [Presidential Spokesperson] Lacierda: #noynoying will not sell–hello? #noynoying really sells hahaha — its cheap, and does not yet increase its price

@chriscahilig: In fairness, “noynoying” is a self-explanatory word. The first time I read “noynoying” in a sentence, I knew right away what it meant.

@momblogger: Indeed @PresidentNoy is a working president. Question: for whom? Whose interest is this President interested on fulfilling? Big Oil firms?

@gangbadoy: That's funny, yung “Noynoying” sa amin, verb din na ang ibig sabihin ay “date ng date ng date, pero hindi nagpapakasal.” #VocabHomework

@gangbadoy: That's funny, with us “Noynoying is a verb that means “always dating but not proceeding with marriage”

@MangPandoy: That's a good idea. Today, I will go #noynoying! May hostage crisis ba kamo? Kakain lang ako. May bagyo? Pa-party ako! [There's a hostage crisis? I'll just eat. There's a storm? I'll party!]

@dee_knees05: It is not just “noynoying” that young Filipinos are adopting from President Benigno Aquino III's known habit. More young Filipinos smoking.

@dudeinterrupted: Just like Imeldific, the word #Noynoying will soon find its way to the LEXICON.

The youth activist group Anakbayan has released a guide on “How to Do the NOYNOYING” and called for more pressure on the Aquino government to act on people’s issues like the oil price hike.

How to do The NOYNOYING:
1. Get a group of people
2. Find a busy public space
3. Sit down/lie on the floor and act like you're doing nothing, lazy, stupid, and like Noynoy
4. Take a picture or video and post in Twiter using #noynoying, or upload and post at facebook.com/Noynoying2012

Here's one of the noynoying memes making the rounds online:

All pictures are from Facebook page of Noynoying and from youth group Anakbayan.

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