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Monday, May 23, 2011

Bob Ong: Popular Filipino Author

     A contemporary Filipino author uses conversational Filipino to depict and reflect on life as a Filipino with humor, and has thus far published six books that have sold more than a quarter of a million copies. He goes by the pseudonym of Bob Ong or Roberto Ong, and Filipinos patronize his works because his replications of Filipino culture and traditions are rendered with an element of comedy in them.[i]
     The famous pseudonym came about when someone mistakenly got in touch with the author, thinking him to be a real person named Bob Ong. The author happened to be working as a web developer and teacher then and had created the Bobong Pinoy website in his spare time, which translates as “Dumb Filipino.” The author’s boss would have fired the author had he known his connection with it, even if the boss was impressed with the site. A People’s Choice Philippine Web Award for Weird/Humor was given to the site in 1998, but after President Joseph “Erap” Estrada’s ouster from power, the site was stopped.[ii]
     The pseudonym Bob Ong  has occasionally been confused with the Filipino Chinese author Charlson Ong, but the author has reported that he is not actually Filipino-Chinese. The poet Paolo Manalo has denied suggestions of him being Bob Ong, while professor and literature awardee Eros S. Atalia has also been theorized as being Bob Ong because his two books have the writing style of Bob Ong.[iii]
     Bob Ong’s books include “Bakit Baliktad Magbasa ng Libro Ang Mga Pilipino?” (2002), “Stainless Longganisa” (2005) and “Kapitan Sino” (2009).[iv]

[i] “Bob Ong”, WikiPilipinas, 12 January 2010, <>
[accessed 23 May 2011}
[ii] ibid
[iii] ibid
[iv] ibid

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