"Hang Up and Submit": A Viral Video's Threat to Filipino Freelancing's Reputation


I was casually sipping my coffee while browsing Facebook when I chanced upon a viral video of a child handling a work call, even describing how to "hang up and submit" the call as if it were nothing. My immediate thought was, imagine if a client abroad gets to watch this video. While it's adorable that a child is mimicking their work-from-home parent, imagine the potential consequences. Clients abroad could easily form a negative perception of Filipino freelancers, assuming a lack of professionalism or disregard for client needs. This single video has the potential to damage the reputation we've meticulously built as reliable and dedicated workers.

The video shows a young child mimicking her mother's work routine, stating, “‘pag may tumawag, hang up niyo lang and submit.” This is alarming because hanging up on a call is a major breach of protocol in the call center world and could result in disciplinary action. This act, while seemingly innocent and humorous, raises significant ethical concerns and questions the mother's professionalism and judgment in involving a child in a work-related task, particularly one that involves client interaction. It also highlights the potential risks of remote work setups when proper boundaries between personal and professional life are not maintained.

As a freelancer myself, I've seen firsthand how individual actions can shape the perception of an entire community. In my experience, many clients have expressed reluctance to work with freelancers from certain countries, including Pakistan, due to a history of unprofessional behavior, such as cheating and scams. Although not all Pakistani freelancers engage in such practices, the actions of a few bad actors can tarnish the reputation of an entire nation's workforce. Similarly, this viral video of a child handling a work call could raise doubts about the professionalism, work ethic, and commitment of Filipino freelancers.

The trust and professionalism that Filipino freelancers have cultivated over the years are invaluable assets in the global marketplace. We have earned a reputation for being reliable, skilled, and dedicated to delivering high-quality work. However, incidents like this video threaten to undermine that reputation. It is imperative for every freelancer to prioritize professionalism and ethical conduct in every interaction, whether online or offline. As work-from-home arrangements become increasingly common, it's crucial to establish clear boundaries and practices that promote both productivity and professionalism.

We live in an interconnected world where social media amplifies even the most harmless moments, exposing them to global scrutiny. This viral video serves as a sobering reminder of the power and reach of digital platforms. While the video brought to light a potential issue with work ethics, it also exposed the mother to a barrage of online criticism. It's important to remember that behind every viral video is a real person with their own struggles and challenges. As freelancers, we must strive for a balance between professionalism and empathy, accountability and understanding. Our actions, both online and offline, have the power to shape perceptions, influence opportunities, and ultimately determine our success.

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