Well this is interesting! Found out the other week that Senator Loren Legarda is sponsoring a bill known as the Baybayin Act of 2014 (SB 1899). This is a parallel effort with Congressman Leopoldo N. Bataoil who’s sponsoring the same bill in Congress (HB 4882). This is different than the National Script Act of 2011 that aims to make Baybayin the National Script. This new bill if approved will require all government agencies, departments and offices are mandated to incorporate Baybayin in their official logos (Sec 4a).
See below for links to download the documents.
Getting Loren Legarda, a popular former news anchor who’s known for her cultural pride is a powerful move to get this bill approved.
From the Explanatory note:
“Baybayin” refers to all existing and discovered ancient and traditional
scripts of the indigenous peoples of the Philippines. It is important to emphasize
the continuing tradition of script writing among a few remaining indigenous
communities as scripts are connected to language and literature.
Some government offices and agencies, such as the National Museum, the
Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino, the National Library, the National Commission
for Culture and the Arts, the Records Management and Archives Office, the
National Historical Commission of the Philippines, and the Cultural Center of
the Philippines, have already incorporated baybayin in their official logos.
All government agencies and offices must take the lead to further promote
Filipino culture and traditions, strengthen Filipino identity, and instill the same
in everyday life. The logos and seals of government agencies and offices should
not only reflect the emblems of their functions and duties but also its pride in
Filipino heritage and traditions.
In view of the foregoing, the immediate passage of this measure is
Right away the first line, “Baybayin” refers to all existing and discovered ancient and traditional
scripts of the indigenous peoples of the Philippines. is trouble in the context of the Philippines. In the diaspora, we’ve loosely used it an an umbrella term in order not to confuse and overwhelm people initially. However, in the Philippines, it shouldn’t overrun existing indigenous writing systems that never went away in certain parts of the country. The people still use it, have their own natural or developed modifications and have a name for it. How is Ancient and Traditional defined? I assume Ancient = no longer in use (Kawi) and traditional means Surat Mangyan, Buhid, Kulitan, Surat Inaborlan and Eskaya? Let’s even say that these conscripts invented by hobbyists catch on, are they to become Baybayin?
Section 4 reads:
The National Museum, as the repository of information on Baybayin, shall make available to all government offices, departments and agencies, a catalogue of the scripts from which the offices, departments, and agencies may refer to for the creation of their appropriate logos;
With the Nations Museum now the center of all things Baybayin along with other scripts, it’s natural that they would be responsible for managing the “translation” process for agencies. Logos will be a challenge since there are space limitations. Abbreviations and initials have their own set of challenges.
Let’s take the DFA (Department of Foreign Affairs)
Written below is DFA spelled out as De-Ep-Ay
Here’s DFA written as D.P.A
I suspect that we’ll see 1 character representations like the National Museum.
We can see a word that represents the agency in the script like the National Library. The bottom part says Karunungan (knowledge). I don’t see the kudlits thought…
In the Explanatory note, Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino is noted as having Baybayin in the logo. I don’t see it. Looks like a W to me unless they meant the O/U character rotated.
Besides government logos, there’s additional bills related to Baybayin
I think this has a good chance of passing with Legarda on board. I hope that regional agencies where there’s an existing script, that is used instead of Baybayin. I also hope that we don’t see any errors like this from 2012.