The Hundred-Peso Baon Question: May Pasok Ba?

MANILA, Philippines - There may be no other website more tailor-made for the Filipino student that has grown up on LOLcats, memes, and rage comics than May Pasok Ba? (www.maypasokba.com).

The website, which gives a single pointblank to the one question all students ask at the beginning of a rainy day, is replete with the trappings of internet culture.

Its main feature - replying "Meron" o "Wala" to the question "May pasok ba?" - is hilarious in its simplicity.

Its "About" page prominently features a LOLcat and the simple explanation for the site's existence: "Araw araw, since 2009 sinasagot ang tanong ng bayan: may pasok ba".

Even its Twitter and Facebook page sport the same internet finery.

Its Twitter, for instance, made this wry observation on August 1: "Walang pasok sa Philippine Senate. (Aug 1) dahil kay typhoon Gener. (Pero meron pa rin sa UP Diliman)."

Announcements on its Facebook page are often accompanied by popular memes - and even more observations about UP Diliman: "Palakpakan po natin ang UP Diliman - ang katangitanging hindi pa nagsususpend. Stormproof!" it remarks in a Facebook that went up on July 21.

This familiarity with internet culture has certainly paid out for the site.

Its Facebook page has almost 73,000 likes as of this writing, while it has 9,000 followers on Twitter. Other than putting up links to official announcements, the site also encourages school officials to provide them with information by emailing ohhai@maypasokba.com.

There have been no changes to the site since it was started in 2009, other than the addition of Android and Windows apps.

In an email interview, the unnamed creator of the site ("Hindi na kailangan pang malaman kung sino. ang importante ay kung meron o wala.") says that even the addenda attached to the "Meron" o Wala" answers have always been there from the very beginning.

Other than revealing the number of hits the site receives on a rainy day - more than 70,000 views - the creator is equally tightlipped about the site's origins. Asking about what inspired him or her to start results in an answer taken directly from the site's FAQ: "Nagsimula ang maypasokba, tulad ng maraming bagay, sa 'wala'."

And how does the site respond when it provides wrong information? The creator has this to say: "We haven't been wrong yet, pero just in case, you could send an email to excuseletter@maypasokba.com."