Marine Cafe Blog: Calling a spade a spade


Manila: Anyone with a keen sense of social media in the shipping industry is likely to have come across today’s Maritime CEO profile. Barista Uno started his highly popular Marine Café Blog four years ago – the anniversary was yesterday. A former shipping, ports and energy journalist, Uno says he became “disenchanted with the decline of the maritime press”, hence the decision to set up on his own in 2009.  

Defining what his site is, Uno says, “It's a maritime blog that calls a spade a spade. It also has a wide scope and talks about topics that don't get enough attention – like maritime art & literature, social mores in shipping, maritime charity.” He feels that there has been a big hole in maritime reporting, one that he is happy to fill and share via all forms of social media.

Coffee, in Uno’s opinion, should be served hot and have a full-bodied flavour and distinctive aroma. Marine Café Blog strives toward the same qualities in its editorial style and content.

By calling his site a blog, Uno is doing himself a disservice. Visitors can access valuable papers and reports in the Dowloads section and there is also a very useful Directory. 

Being based in the Philippines much of Uno’s writing is about crewing. Of late this has turned to the recently introduced Maritime Labour Convention (MLC). “Shipping is prepared with the paper work,” Uno says of MLC, “but not prepared to change the culture that has commodified seafarers.”

Uno has his own opinions too on the recent tragic collision in the centre of the Philippines that claimed more than 100 lives. 

“The accidents will happen again and again,” he says. “Filipinos do not have a safety culture, on shore or at sea. Never mind the government corruption, which is deeply entrenched.”

There’s the pungent ristretto style comments that have made Uno’s site such a success in its first four years.  [26/08/13]


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