Gay Fluent

Here’s a photo I spotted on Instagram. It’s supposed to say Jay Fluent (I assume it’s a rap name). Made me laugh when I saw it. Incorrectly use Baybayin and it could change the meaning of your tattoo. Usually if someone screws up the spelling, it’s just a bunch of random letters meaning nothing. However, if your luck (or unlucky), it could spell something else. What this dude has on the right side is Falauenata for Fluent and on the left it’s supposed to be Jay but is written as Gaaya (could mean to Copy). If he’s wanting each character to be a letter, Falauenata would be Fluent but then that would mean that Gaaya would be Gay. I don’t know if he’s gay or not but I don’t think he wanted that.  If would be awesome if he was though. At least it’s a henna tattoo. Looks like it was done in a beach in the Visaya area. Maybe Boracay? You can tell by the way Pilipinas is written on his chest. The S has a kudlit checkmark  above and below the character to cancel the vowel.

Maybe he’s fluent in usapang bading?

Giants Filipino Heritage Jeepney with incorrect Baybayin

1st of all, this is a cool looking jeep. Unfortunately, the Baybayin on it is incorrect. I really hope they didn’t make these yet. While it does translate “Filipino Heritage” from a character to character perspective, it’s not the same if you were to say it. Here’s a rundown of some of the issues….

1) It would be better to translate it to Tagalog or any other Filipino language. In my opinion, the best would be Pamana ng Pilipino or Pamanang. That would translate in Baybayin as:


2) If transliteration was the aim, the pronunciation is also incorrect. What’s on the jeep is He-Ri(Di)-Ta-Ge for Heritage. The “Ta” sound is Tao, not Te like in Tejano. The “Ge” used is not a J sound like in Jerry. It’s “Ga” as in Gago.

The “translation” on the is what one would get by using an online translator without context or understanding of the language.

The lesson is, ask 1st. There are numerous people out there that are willing to help out for FREE.

Looks cool though 🙂

Akbayan SJSU & AKO

Last month, Akbayan San Jose State University hosted an “Alibata” workshop “taught” by the brothers of AKO. While I didn’t attend this workshop, I was a bit annoyed by the use of Alibata. I get it if Alibata was used because that’s what people know it as but was explanation about the historical aspect of it? I doubt it. Besides the misdemeanor term, I question the the translation of AKO in the postcard below. I totally understand that it’s A.K.O (Alpha Kappa Omega) but it’s so obviously incorrect. If you use “Fob it”, “Be cool” and provide an wrong translation (isn’t even a loose one) with a backwards A character, you have no business running a workshop. Sorry

My biggest issue is that myself and others, spend a lot of time and money trying to revive Baybayin. When misseducation like this gets out, it makes what we do a whole lot harder.

While I don’t claim to be an expert in Baybayin, I know the basics. Hell, anyone can just by reading a few websites. Even Wikipedia has good info. Yeah, Baybayin (Alibata) is cool but don’t throw crap out there.

Yes, I emailed them and commented on posts but never received a response

incorrect alibata workshop

incorrect alibata

Affliction Clothing: Brandon Vera Baybayin shirt errors

1st of all, I think it’s cool that Baybayin is on a MAJOR clothing company like Affliction but unfortunately, there are a few issues. Here’s Affliction’s Signature Series shirt of Brandon Vera. The front has an eagle and “The Truth”. The back is where it get’s interesting where there are 4 Baybayin words that are tattooed on Brandon’s back. They represent the 4 elements Earth (Mundo), Wind (Hangin), Water (Tubig) and Fire (Apoy). Starting with the tattoo, Earth should probably be “Lupa” as in dirt. Mundo while conversational Tagalog (Spanish rooted) for world/earth. When your speaking about the element earth, I believe one means dirt not the planet Earth. Also the Ma character in Mundo is missing a kudlit that would make it Mu. The tattoo actually says Mando. Easy fix though.

Now to the shirt. The graphic below is a screenshot of the back. Besides being out of order as it s on Brandon’s back, there are some inconsistencies in kudlit writing. I think it’s fine in handwriting and even in art but for a commercial shirt, it should be uniform.

brandon vera tattoo affliction shirt

Tubig (Correct)
The characters written are Tu-Bi-G. Notice the cancellation kudlit under the last character. Without the + kudlit, it would read as Tubiga.

Apoy (Incorrect)
Looks like the characters written are A-Po-Yo. It should have a + just like the Ga character in Tubig. If using cancellation + kudlits, it’s important that you make sure they look different than your traditional kudlits.

Mundo (Incorrect)
Besides the Lupa and Ma tattoo issue I mentioned earlier, this also has the + issue but this time for the 2nd character Na. The last character looks like it was combined with the kudlit. With the + kudlit and DA errors, it looks like it says Manoda or Manade.

Hangin (Incorrect)
Again, the last character is missing the + kudlit. Now it looks like Hangino.

What sucks is that some people will probably get those wrong words tattooed. How did this happened? Probably the designer found a photo of Brandon’s back online and just reworked it and didn’t bother to research or ask around it it was correct or not.

Check it out at Affliction Clothing

Eugene Amano's clothing line

Filipino pro football paler Eugene Amano has is own clothing line “Amano Island Strength”. Check out the signature line from the myspace page. The Baybayin characters below are S-T-RE-NG-T-H. Kind of a strange transliteration in my opinion. Shouldn’t this be LA-KA or LA-KA-S?

Here’s probably what happened…..a search was made on google for “Alibata translator” and landed on the popular “Eagle’s corner”. Strength was typed in the translator using the modified “SPanish” version because using traditional would only return the “DA/RA” glyph. Some are under the impression that a Baybayin translator is also an English to Tagalog translator as well.

Malakas = ME-LE-KE?

I don’t intend for this to become an “Alibata error” site but I feel that I need to post errors to educate. Here’s something I found for sale. It’s supposed to say Malakas (strong) but it actualy translates to ME/I-LE/I-KE/I. It shouldn’t have any kudlits. The proper traditional way would be MA-LA-KA.

Kali = Kana? Kala?

This was originally posted on

kali baybayin

Found this photo on Flickr that’s supposed to say KA-LI (Filipino martial art) but it actually says KA-NA because instead of the the “L” character, it’s an “N”. Notice the difference between the two.


Let’s say it’s artistic license and the “L” and “N” characters just look alike, there’s still the issue of the missing kudlit above the “LA” glyph. Kali done correctly would look like this:

kali baybayin

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