JOIN  THE  FIESTA  NOW, COME  HOME  TO  PHILSTAR.COM!

MANILA, June 23, 2005
 (STAR) By Joseph Nacino - Filipinos love to celebrate.

This is most evident in how we celebrate our fiestas Ė with grandiose preparations in the neighborhood, colorful buntings across the streets and raucous bands parading through town.

Filipinos will actually celebrate every chance they get.

So on philstar.comís fifth year of reporting Filipino news on the Web, it is giving the Filipino global community every reason to celebrate.

philstar.com has been with the Filipino people through three administration changes, two uprisings and several national elections. And every step of the way, it has brought the latest events in the country to Filipinos all over the world.

To keep pace with the changing times, the site is now launching a new look and new services to match the same vision and drive that made philstar.com one of the Filipino peopleís most trusted online news sources.

Moreover, the site wants to commemorate the passage of the past five years and what better way to do this than through the Filipinosí ultimate expression of passion for life: the fiesta.

A Colorful History

philstar.com came into being in March 1997, a simple website for its print edition, The Philippine STAR. The same site was re-launched in August 2000 as a news and entertainment portal for the Filipino global community. And it did become a virtual home for thousands of Filipinos here and abroad.

For Filipinos around the world, philstar.com served as the platform where the contract worker in the Middle East, the caregiver in Europe, the domestic helper in Asia, and the immigrant in the United States can touch base with the homeland.

On average, philstar.com receives 670,000 page views per day (20.1 million per month) and an estimated 100,000 unique viewer sessions on any given day. Moreover, registered users have reached 150,000.

The site has kept its promise to deliver news to Filipinos everywhere and has also introduced mobile services like the Star Instant Messenger and Star News Alerts.

A New Look

On its fifth year, the website has come out with a new look, new content and new features and services to keep up with the needs of its readers. Taking the festive approach, the new philstar.com site is more colorful and striking.

philstar.com has also linked up with new media partners, notably Cebu-based The Freeman and Banat, in delivering the news.

Together with The Philippine STAR and Pilipino STAR Ngayon, these publications will be powering philstar.comís news in three dialects Ė English, Filipino and Cebuano.

The siteís other content partners have also stepped up its services, while new partners came on board to offer philstar.com readers broader content and services.

New content includes the latest travel deals from Lakbay.net, Star Matchmaking services powered by Itzamatch, an electronic directory through e-Yellow Pages (eYP), online auctions courtesy of Bidshot Auctions, foreign exchange and real-time stock quotes from 2TradeAsia.com, and jobs from JobStreet Philippines.

The site also now offers Filipinos a chance to help their fellow countrymen through Operation Damayan, as well as learn to defend themselves through lessons from Karate Development Arts and Sports (KDA).

More Offerings

Although philstar.com has a new face, it will retain many of its features, including the spruced-up Web Specials sections and the results of professional examinations. The much sought-after Archives Section will be back in August, while other favorites such as the Message Board, Online Poll and Letters to the Editor will be re-launched next month.

One of philstar.comís content partners, PEOPLE Asia, continues to profile the most exciting personalities in the Philippines and in the region. The stylish magazine contributes its appeal to the site by providing entertaining stories about the most interesting people and places in Asia.

Lastly, the site has a bevy of advertisers to offer products and services ranging from real estate to gifts to money orders to other financial services.

In the end, itís the people who matter at philstar.com. Everyone is invited to visit the new philstar.com and sample its bigger and better offerings.

To thank its long-time partners and loyal advertisers, it has also organized an event to celebrate the unveiling of new philstar.com. This event is made possible by friends from Mezze, San Miguel Pale Pilsen, San Miguel Light Beer, Ginebra Premium Gin and Listel Wines From France.

So come home to the Filipino global community on the Web and celebrate in true Filipino fashion. Come home to philstar.com!


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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