Author: Mary Grace Costa

PHILIPPINES: She’s Beauty, She’s Grace, She’s Got Taxes To Pay

MARY GRACE COSTA WRITES – Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach may have won the 2015 Miss Universe crown, along with the hearts of her fellow countrymen and women, but she won’t be charming her way out of her taxes. Upon her homecoming on January 23, Pia received a warm welcome and friendly reminder from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) of her duties as a Philippine citizen. BIR chief, Kim Henares, contacted Wurtzbach to inform her that her Miss Universe Pageant prizes were still subject to taxation and requested that she pay the proper amount to the Philippines government. According to a tax treaty...

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PHILIPPINES: Duterte Drama Reaches Anticlimactic Conclusion

MARY GRACE COSTA WRITES – In the mood to binge-watch a Filipino TV drama for a long afternoon of frustration, confusion, and catharsis? Look no further than the #DuterteSerye hashtag on Twitter. Rodrigo Duterte left his supporters on a cliffhanger the week before October 16 as they waited for the Davao City mayor, one of the nation’s longest-serving public officials, to announce his candidacy for president in the 2016 election. In the end, they were disappointed when the tired politician reaffirmed his decision not to run for president. “I want to retire,” Duterte said in a statement. “Give the...

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PHILIPPINES: Writers Ye Be Warned

MARY GRACE COSTA WRITES – Way to rain on the parade, Chito Narvasa! Invited to speak at an awards dinner for journalists covering Philippines basketball, the new b-ball commissioner chose to dress down reporters, warning them to practice “responsible journalism” or else. It seems Narvasa wanted to ensure that all Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) writers got the message after reporter Snow Badua was banned for tweeting “irresponsible and deplorable” comments about Alfrancis Chua, a PBA official. The Philippines has made a reputation for itself as a hostile environment for media workers. The country has seen 77 confirmed journalist deaths since...

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PHILIPPINES: A Picture Worth a Thousand Shares

MARY GRACE COSTA WRITES – In late June, nine-year-old Daniel Cabrera couldn’t find a light bulb to study under, but now, the inspirational Filipino boy certainly has a bright future ahead of him. On June 23rd, a college student by the name of Joyce Torrefranca found Cabrera studying on the sidewalk next to the food vendor stall that doubled as his family’s home. With nothing but the faint light of a McDonald’s sign to illuminate the pages of the textbooks and papers, Torrefranca was moved by the young boy’s tenacity and drive. She surreptitiously took a photo of the...

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Asia Media International Staff

ASIA MEDIA INTERNATIONAL is a student-driven publication of Loyola Marymount University’s Asia Media Center – a vital part of LMU’s Department of Asian and Asian American Studies (AAAS), in an alliance with the university's award-winning Dept.of Political Science, and with the influential Pacific Century Institute.

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR and Executive Assistant to the Editor-in-Chief:
Jay Seo

Aashna Malpani, Yi Ning Wong

Savannah Nunez

Katrina Crosby

Staff Writers [Beat]:
Nadia Aljojo
Kate Barkley [Australia]
Murad Basrawi
Alexis Cruz [Qatar]
Truman Daly
Jacqueline Dilanchyan
Bobby Fretz
Ephiphany Hulburd
Diana Jablonski [Malaysia]
Matthew Lange [Asian Profiles,Anime]
Frances Magsalin [Korea/Kpop]
Beth McLaughlin
Rachel Oakes
Hiromi Ochi [Singapore]
Dylan Ramos
Fassa Sar [Film]
Tiara Salvabilla
Gloria Santillan [Korea]
Sebastian Segura [Russia]
Elizabeth Soelistio [Indonesia]
Nicolas Swaya
C.J. Stone [Japan]

Special Correspondent:
Clementine Todorov

Curriculum Coordinator:
Evan Sun

Video Team Editor:
Momokoo (Yuchan) Deng

Emeritus Managing Editors:
Savannah Nunez
= Sabrina Verduzco
= Mary Grace Costa
Kelcey Lorenzo

Contribuing Editors Emeritus:

Robert Dylan Fields
Eriko Lee Katayama
Ryan Lippert
Adrian Narayan [India]
James Royce [Australia]
Miranda Pak [Hong Kong]
Lamiya Shabir [Pakistan & Islam]
Yunfei Suo [China]
Erisa Takeda [Japan Politics]
Ryan Urban [Singapore]

Emeritus Associate Publishers:
Jeremiah Fajardo
Brian Chris Canave
Peyton Cross

Emeritus Executive Editor:
Lexie Tucker

Emeritus Executive Senior Editor and Senior Writing Instructor:
Ben Sullivan

Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Prof Tom Plate


Gareth C.C. Chang, Tom Plate, Jennifer Ramos, Kal Raustiala, Jeremiah Fajardo, Ben Sullivan, Greg Treverton