Stepping into the digital age

The LaSallian, in the early stages of an increasingly digitalized landscape, devised various strategies to keep up with the times—many of them being the foundations of our online presence today.

The consumption of news has evolved over time, from broadsheets to websites to the many digital platforms that the world enjoys today. 

The LaSallian has lived through all of this transformation–and thrived for that matter–over its 63 years of existence and has always been at the forefront of the latest developments. 

My time as a member of this publication started over a decade ago in 2012. Back then, was constantly under development and social media was still transitioning into a mainstream tool. This gave us an opportunity to be among the first movers in the digital space and we took advantage of it. 

Facebook was gaining traction during these years and we used it as a means to disseminate articles and breaking news. These posts often concluded with a link leading back to the original article on The LaSallian’s website and accompanying photos eventually went from a nice-to-have to a must as a stylebook was slowly developed for this emerging frontier. 

All of this may all seem quite trivial and mundane in 2023 where The LaSallian has an ever-booming online presence, yet it was groundbreaking back in 2013. 

The social media highlight of my tenure as Editor in Chief came in January 2015 when Pope Francis visited the Philippines for four days. Together with a hand-picked group of staff members, I camped outside Villamor Airbase for several hours in anticipation of his arrival. 

The photographers on our team managed to snap a photo of the Pope waving at the crowd despite the challenges posed by the oncoming dusk and poor lighting. However, cell towers in the area were jammed for security purposes. This made it next to impossible to upload anything via the recently developed technology known as hotspot. 

In spite of this obstacle, we refused to accept defeat and sprinted to the top of the nearby parking building where an iPhone 6 Plus, then a state of the art device, managed to get cell service for a few moments. Over the next minute, the team frantically worked to upload the photo on Facebook which allowed The LaSallian to post one of, if not the first, photo of Pope Francis in Manila. 

The timely manner by which the post was made allowed it to garner over 400,000 likes on Facebook and it became the publication’s most viral post at the time. Naturally, this led to more followers as well and helped expand The LaSallian’s reach. 

Over on Twitter (Now known as X), the team was making waves too, especially in the collegiate sports landscape. In 2012, there were limited options to get live UAAP updates if you did not have access to a television. Live streaming was some years away and there was only a Twitter account or two that would tweet out the score of the game accompanied by the time remaining. 

The LaSallian capitalized on this gap and began a trend that stands until today, tweeting out not only live scores, but also brief snippets of what was actually happening in the game. UAAP games are important to the school’s community and these tweets gave everyone a chance to “Be in the Know” from wherever they were. Aside from addressing a need, it was also a development tool for those assigned to post updates as one had to constantly be on their toes when posting these updates.

Of course, the cherry on top of that season’s coverage was DLSU’s first-ever UAAP General Championship which warranted a special magazine issue that hangs in a frame in my room to this day. 

There are many more stories of staffer ingenuity and on-campus controversy from my era that I can tell, though I will save them for next time. 

While my term as the Editor in Chief of this prestigious organization ended a bit over eight years ago, there have been so many technological advancements since then that I feel like it happened decades ago. Nonetheless, I continue to carry the lessons, experiences, and friendships that I gained during the three years that I spent with The LaSallian with immense pride. 

It warms my heart to see that the culture of kaizen imparted to me by my seniors carries on within this timeless institution and I hope that it continues to do so for many generations to come.

Derecho The LaSallian! Animo!


This article is an unedited submission from The LaSallian‘s former editor in chief, offering a glimpse into the candid thoughts, insights, and perspectives of an individual who once steered the publication through the currents of time.

Ronaldo Manzano served as the Editor in Chief of The LaSallian in Academic Year (AY) 2014-2015. A year prior, he served as Sports Editor, during which the DLSU Green Archers bagged the men’s basketball title and DLSU brought home its second UAAP General Championship. As publication head, he led The LaSallian’s on-the-ground coverage of Pope Francis’ historic five-day visit to the Philippines.

Within campus walls, the publication covered the University Student Government closely, writing extensively about how a plebiscite for constitutional amendments and General Elections 2015 ended with disastrous voter turnouts. Meanwhile, DLSU was at the cusp of a calendar shift, which moved the start of the AY from May to August, as part of ASEAN integration.

Manzano graduated from De La Salle University-Manila in 2015 with a double degree in BS Applied Economics and BS Management of Financial Institutions. Today, he is a Global Funds Portfolio Manager for Sun Life of Canada (Philippines), Inc. and is eagerly awaiting the DLSU Green Archers’ next UAAP championship.

Ronaldo Manzano

By Ronaldo Manzano

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