Computer Professionals' Union

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Computer Professionals' Union
TypeNon-stock, non-profit
PurposeAdvancing Information Communication Technology for the Filipino people
HeadquartersQuezon City
  • Philippines
Official languages
Filipino, English
National Coordinator
Rick Bahague
Deputy National Director
Gladys Regalado[1]

Computer Professionals' Union (CPU or CP-Union) is a mass organization of information and communications technology (ICT) professionals, practitioners, and workers in the Philippines. It is registered in the Philippines as a non-stock, non-profit, non-government organization that promotes activist ICT principles and organize ICT professionals to provide ICT services to Filipino people.[2][3] Their office is located at Quezon City and their current National Coordinator is Rick Bahague.[4]

Some of CPU initiatives include Software Freedom Day celebration in the Manila,[5][6] promotion of Free and Open Source Software[7] including Drupal,[8] and collaboration with Wikimedia Philippines.[9]


The organization was started in 2001 by a group of information communications technology practitioners. They officially registered under the Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission in 2008 as a non-profit and non-stock corporation.


Meeting of Wikimedia Foundation, Wikimedia Philippines, and Computer Professionals' Union at the CPU office in Quezon City. Third from the left is National Director Rick Bahague, and first from the right is Deputy National Director Gladys Regalado

CPU is notable for its belief that the ICT sector in the Philippines is controlled and dominated by foreign monopoly capitalists, which stunts the growth and development of Filipino technology and economy.[3] CPU supports a truly nationalist and democratic government that will advance and promote a people's ICT.[3] CPU believes that, like farmers, workers, and other sectors in the country, ICT workers also need to organize in order to advance their specific needs.[2]

A year before the 2010 Philippine general elections, CPU warns sophisticated cheating with the Philippines' first automated polls.[10] They had hosted a national conference in University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City to discuss the automated election system (AES).[11] Rick Bahague, CPU National Coordinator said that the goal of the conference was to gather experiences and best practices in technologies relevant to AES. He further said that software bugs in the AES system can affect machines to be used in the elections and the automated election system is vulnerable to manipulation from inside or outside attacks.[11]

During the height of the protests against Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) in January 2012, CPU expressed strong opposition to it.[12] They said that SOPA and PIPA that were being pushed in the United States Congress attack free speech and expression and would have impacts to human rights groups, bloggers, advocacy groups and all content creators in the web. They believed that any website can be closed without due process.[12]

In September 2012, Philippine President Aquino signed the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 enacted by 15th Congress of the Philippines. The law had led numerous sectors including Computer Professionals' Union to protest it.[13][14] According to CPU, sections of the law may have various interpretations that may lead to intentional or non-intentional misinterpretations by State authorities wherein computer users can be punished without due process.[15] They further said that Section 19 of the law has become far worse than SOPA and PIPA.[14]

Organization tenets[edit]

In advancing CPU's advocacy, these are their principles:

  • Free Information: CPU believes that information in all forms is the collective knowledge and experience of humankind. It believes that no one owns information; therefore, anyone can use and develop it for the benefit of mankind and development of society.
  • Privacy of Information: Computers and telecommunications networks have brought consumers many conveniences. But, the organization alleges, advanced technologies pose serious threats to privacy. CPU believes that information about us, our families, where we live, where we work, people we call, sites we surf, stores we shop in, etc., should be kept private.
  • Open Source: CPU fully supports the open source initiative. One of the group's aims is to convince fellow technology practitioners and the government to abandon the use of software by companies such as Microsoft and Oracle Corporation.
  • Right to organize: CPU members believe that as workers, they have the right to form labor unions and associations that will collectively fight for workers' rights and welfare.
  • Use of Appropriate Technology: CPU believes that technology alone cannot solve political and social problems. It aims to dispel myths about the infallibility of technological systems and neutrality of science and technology.
Pandayan sa Daluyan, an event organized by CPU in May 2012 at Iligan City in Mindanao


  1. ^ Joe Torres (18 February 2014). "Philippine Supreme Court makes controversial ruling on libel". UCA News. Retrieved 8 May 2014.
  2. ^ a b "What is CPU?". Archived from the original on 29 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  3. ^ a b c "About Computer Professionals' Union". Computer Professionals' Union. Archived from the original on 28 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  4. ^ "Software Freedom Day 2012: Going Green with the Free and Open Source Community". 6 September 2012. Archived from the original on 30 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  5. ^ Peachy Limpin (14 September 2005). "LOADING... Country Celebrates Software Freedom Day 2005". Manila Bulletin. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  6. ^ "RP's biggest 'Software Freedom Day' set Saturday". GMA News. 19 September 2008. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  7. ^ "Free and Open Source". Computer Professionals' Union. Archived from the original on 28 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  8. ^ "DrupalCamp3D: Down and Dirty with Drupal". Computer Professionals' Union. Archived from the original on 29 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  9. ^ "Wikipedia East Asia Tour". Wikimedia Philippines. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  10. ^ Ronalyn V. Olea (4 April 2009). "Computer Experts Warn of Sophisticated Dagdag Bawas with Automated Polls". Bulatlat. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  11. ^ a b "IT groups to meet to discuss automated polls". GMA News. 21 April 2009. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  12. ^ a b "Computer Professionals' Union opposes SOPA and PIPA Act". Davao Today. 17 January 2012. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  13. ^ "Why we protest the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012? (A Briefer)". Computer Professionals' Union. Archived from the original on 30 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  14. ^ a b "Internet activists, LGBTs join clamor for nullification of cybercrime law". Bulatlat. 27 September 2012. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  15. ^ John Rizle L. Saligumba (30 September 2012). "Martial Law in the digital age?". Davao Today. Retrieved 8 January 2013.

External links[edit]