FAMEWHORE? | Mich Liggayu hit for oversharing Jam’s final days on social media

Some netizens are describing Michelle Liggayu as a "famewhore"

Jam Sebastian, the other half of the popular real-life couple JaMich together with his fiance Michelle Liggayu, has passed away yesterday after succumbing to lung cancer (he told the public about it early last year). He would have turned 29 on March 20.

Since the pair began uploading videos featuring themselves back in 2011, the “JaMich” love team has maintained a massive following on all social media platforms. Given their prominence on the Philippine social media scene, the news of Sebastian’s death generated intense attention not only from netizens but also from major media outlets.

For example, hash tags like #RIPJam, #PaalamJamSebastian, and #BeStrongMich were the top trending topics on Twitter as of Wednesday night.

rappler jamich
This screenshot best illustrate how much attention Rappler is giving to every single story related to “JaMich”

Meanwhile, the editors of online news website Rappler.com has deemed it important to give wall-to-wall coverage to every single thing happening to the couple, which is comparable to what they did during Pope Francis’ visit last January and their current coverage of the Mamasapano, Maguindanao tragedy.  Are they giving too much publicity for a single person’s death? Just imagine if Rappler had been around when Rico Yan died.

There’s no doubt that JaMich’s long-established popularity among Filipino Internet users is the main reason why they are getting all this attention. Despite this, Jam’s fiance seems to have done everything else she can to get further attention from people.

In the past days and weeks, we’ve been fed with endless stories related to the Jam-is-dying-soon saga. For example, we know that Jam requested to be subjected to euthanasia, and that he became unconscious a few days ago but suddenly managed to wake up and scribble a message for Mich, and that he was visited by big-name celebrities like Kris Aquino and basketball star Jimmy Alapag.

We know all of these through the social media posts of Michand her brother Christopher. Of course, these items are not complete without attaching images or video clips showing Jam in his emaciated condition.

Before proceeding, let me share with you what award-winning  writer/TV host Lourd De Veyra once described as the people’s tendency to unleash their “inner Kris Aquino.” That refers to the people’s willingness to share every single episode of their private lives to everyone just to elicit attention, fame, and sympathy. And with the aid of social media, engaging in that is now all the more easier.

While a vast majority of netizens are expressing their condolences over Sebastian’s death, some of them are instead criticizing Liggayu for being a famewhore. Use this link to read some of the less-than-pleasant comments directed against the woman.

jamich famewhore
Some netizens are describing Michelle Liggayu as a “famewhore”

Losing a loved one is a universal experience. I, for instance, lost my “Daddy” two years ago after a bout with an advanced type of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD, by the way, was also the cause of Dolphy’s death in 2012).

However, unlike Sebastian’s relatives, our family made it a point not to take photos or videos of him during his final hospitalization. Will you take a picture of your mother or father at a time when he/she is experiencing unimaginable suffering and have it shared on Facebook afterwards?

A thread that I started on Facebook regarding this topic has received dozens of responses so far. One of the more notable insights came from James Lindo, an engineering student from Quezon City who. According to him, because of Mich’s decision to post pictures and videos of Jam in his emaciated condition, the latter “will now be remembered as the “weak, thin, and ill Jam,” instead of the “cool and handsome Jam” that his previous videos depict.

No stranger to controversy:

The pair has encountered controversy in the past. In 2013, their pledge of giving P1,000 to the victims of super typhoon “Yolanda” for every 10,000 views to a video they uploaded on YouTube received flak from netizens. They were accused of using the tragedy to gain greater popularity.

In September of last year, the couple again received criticism even from their own fans after Sebastian expressed his desire to save money and buy an IPhone 6 (a goal he dubbed as #IponParaSaIPhone) at a time when their followers were actually sending him donations for his cancer treatment.

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About Mark Madrona 1191 Articles
Mark Madrona is a prize-winning blogger, online journalist, and educator from the Philippines. Previously a book editor, he is now teaching communication subjects for two public universities in Manila. His blog The Filipino Scribe won 3rd place in a blog competition organized by the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability in East Asia and the Pacific (ANSA-EAP). In 2015, it was one of the finalists in the 2015 Lasallian Scholarum Awards for Best Online Feature Article in Youth and Education. He also won the Best Blog Award during the 2011 Population and Development Media Awards, the youngest recipient of that recognition. Know more about him here: http://www.filipinoscribe.com/about/.

25 Comments on FAMEWHORE? | Mich Liggayu hit for oversharing Jam’s final days on social media

  1. I feel for the family. She is addicted to the allure of fame I guess. Everyone of us wants to be famous in a way but there has to be limit in situation like this. She wants to to squeeze out every juice of stardom from this sad event of his boyfriends life. I suspect she is scared when his other half dies, her fame will also die with it. This is the likely scenario as we have been a witness in the past to movie or TV love teams that suffered this fate. Though not to the extent that the other half of the love team dies but when the love team was broken up to try another pair when the couple had a falling out with their romance. Reminds me of the Wowie-Juday tandem. When they were separated by their handlers, Wowie de Guzman’s fame started to wane and eventually the guy lost his career. Mich is afraid she will arrive at this crossroad. She must have an inkling that her fame will wane as soon as the other pair is gone.

    • I feel sorry for Mich because a lot of people are throwing these remarks without even knowing her or the whole situation. Please don’t judge her without knowing the whole truth and you don’t even know her personally. You don’t have a PhD in Law, so don’t fucking judge people and I’m almost as certain that you don’t have a degree in Psychology to say that she’s afraid of losing fame. Please don’t ride the hate train.

  2. my friend died of cancer a week ago. we helped raised 30k pesos hopefully for his chemotherapy. at 4.45 am, the time our event ended, he also died. prior to his death, we’ve helped children at the children’s hospital to cover for their medical expenses. those were also tragic deaths as well yet we all grieved silently.

    i have nothing against cancer patients. i have something against media polarizing a life event that has been happening to most people especially the depressed and the marginalised ones. this couple used their condition to gain more hits.

  3. Harsh naman nito. Sa IG, Facebook and Twitter kasi, maraming nagtatanong and humihingi ng updates from Jam. At nagkataon siguro na very open sila kasi utang nila sa mga fans nila ang kasikatan. Generous lang sila sa mga fans nila for giving photos and updates. I’m not really a fan of Jamich but I watch their videos and I do understand why many people loves them. If you guys don’t like the publicity of Jamich then just respect and stop giving rude comments. We don’t really know how they feel. Atleast just try to understand and be open-minded especially at this time of mourning.

      • What exactly are you pointing out that is immoral? Can we say that newscasters are immoral too for sharing other people’s tragedies? Do you have a PhD in law to judge people?

      • What exactly are you pointing out that is immoral? Can we say that newscasters are immoral too for sharing other people’s tragedies? Do you have a PhD in law for you to judge people?

  4. Mich is fighting a hard battle. Can ‘t you just be a little nicer to her rather than giving useless criticisms? Of course you’ll never really apreciate and understand what she did (posting updates, pictures, etc), if you’re not a fan. Sympathy is what she need right now, not those unecessary bashing. If you can’t help ease her pain, just keep quiet, stop judging, be thankful that this didn’t happen to you or to any of your loved ones. Pray for Jam’s soul. Remember, only God can judge! Haaay people these days… 🙁

  5. As it was said in the article, would you like to post videos or photos of your dying relatives in their most painful moments? Heck, I won’t even picture my relative’s hand and keep it in my phone. If you’re mourning, you don’t have to announce it to the whole wide world. Many people in there are going through heartbreaks and such, lahat tayo may kwentong ganyan pero remember na hindi lahat ng taong nagsasabi ng condolence eh MAY PAKE TALAGA. Tulad ng bumabati sayo ng happy birthday, or ng congrats. But I have to agree that some of the comments are a bit off the line though, and UGGHHH RAPPLER’S SENSATIONALIZING THE ISSUE. LOL

    • Apparently they are public figures. Their lives are made public and the public insist that they are kept informed of their situation thereby these figures are obligated to respond to the public’s plea.
      We’ve already experienced a lot of public figures on their deathbeds and their deaths were followed closely by tens of millions of citizens. These deaths were documented through mass media in real time like live television reports, daily newspapers, and the internet too.(Dolphy’s death for example.) Our current population is 100million+ of which 63% watch the Television everyday. That’s 66 million people. Yet the current netizen population consists of 9million+ and not all of those were following jamich’s struggle, maybe 5.4 million only. So compare these figures. 5.4 million versus 66million. Both public figures but unfortunately people say that one of them is guilty of famewhoring/oversharing.
      If Jamich had been an international sensation, I bet people wouldn’t be uttering these terms: “famewhore, insensitive, disrespectful.”
      What isn’t apparent is the fact that it was Jam’s decision to document his malady in hopes to inspire people. It was knowledge to those who followed his whole struggle completely that it was Jam’s decision to push through with sharing everything. It’s fucking obvious that he was still cooperating with the documentation and still addressing the audience in those videos. The presence of the material and the fact that they documented everything til his death is nuff to say that he didn’t ask people to stop documenting him. Sure, maybe it’s not your thing to take pictures of your loved ones in their deathbeds. You don’t like to reminisce such tragedies. We listened to your opinion. Not saying that you’re wrong, I respect your opinion but respect others’ too. Look at things from a nonobjective point of view. It’s okay for some people to share media of their own death, or their loved ones’ deaths. Yes it is abnormal, but abnormal doesn’t mean “wrong”.

      I like the hypocrisy of some people. They talk about open-mindedness yet have closed their minds to any opinion but their own.
      They speak of open-mindedness but they weren’t open enough to look for information about who decided to share these things in the media and why they did it. P*** ina kala ko ba na-overshare? Yun na nga eh, na-overshare na pati yung sagot sa tanong mo di mo pa hinanap.

  6. Grabe kung ang argument is “kung ikaw ba mamatayan magpopost ka…” it might be different from one person to another. If it’s unimaginable for one person to post on social media about the death of a loved one it may be coping for another. Who are we to judge na mali yun. Parang yung article on why it’s socially unacceptable to do anything anymore. Some people have the tendency to blindly go with the fad and others have the tendency to blindly criticize just because it’s mainstream. Maiba lang at masabing di nakikiuso. We have to understand that they have extreme circumstances eh. Baka way of coping niya ang posting. Displacement ba. She may be trying to make herself feel productive by “keeping their fans updated and letting them mourn the loss.” Para she won’t have to deal with the death of a loved one agad. It’s painful and sometimes people don’t want to deal with pain head on diba. It’s like an amplified version of when people take pictures sa wake pero nakasmile. Culture has a role in it. Pag pinoy smiling is coping. Sa kanya nga lang it’s not smiling it’s posting. Or pag nagpopost sa fb ng details about a wake. Eh kung typical ang ganon all the more amplified for her case, they were sensationalized for years jusme!

    On another note syempre not everyone passing condolences are genuinely concerned pero doesn’t mean there aren’t people who are. Baka naman cinonsider niya yon. Dami pang naghuhugas kamay. Hindi hater oo pero labeling someone as a famewhore namatayan na nga. It’s still putting down the person. It’s adding insult to injury.

    • I TOTALLY AGREE WITH YOU, Darella. Judgmental naman ng iba diyan. Kung makasabi naman kung ano ang TAMA at MALI at maka-decide nito para sa isang tao.

      Sa mga “nambabash” sa Jamich kaya po ganoon ay dahil utang na loob nila sa JAMICH fans ang kasikatang natamasa nila. At yung mga fans na yun din yung mismong nag-aask for updates. Mga nagco-comment, mga nagpi-pray for Jam. Siyempre hindi rin naman magandang balewalain nalang nila yung mga fans nila. Simpleng updates lang naman e. NA NAAAPPRECIATE NG MGA FANS. At siyempre yung ibang hindi fans, puro PUNA. puro AKUSA. As a fan, okay lang sa akin yung ina-update nila kami. Kasi concerned kami kay Jam. at THANKFUL sila sa fans for the prayers and support.

      E yung By Chance nila hindi naman nila akalaing yun yung magiging road nila to stardom, tinangkilik yun ng mga fans. Sobrang unexpected yun na sa isang video na yun ay biglang magbabago ang kanilang buhay. Isang video lang yun. Hindi sila perpekto, pero maayos sila. Hindi sila katulad ng iba. Lahat naman tayong may time na gustong mapansin, hangaan. kahit ikaw…nagpo-post ka pa nga dito e. So napapansin ka. Sincere si Mich sa mga posts niya at di fake ang feelings. Gusto niya lang i-share sa mga fans ang nararamdaman niya.

      • Ok lang naman magupdate ng fans, pero there’s a limit. She may be catering to her fans, pero at the expense of Jam’s privacy?

        And di na ba factor dito yung respeto para kay Jam? Puro ka defend kay Mich at concern kay Jam pero all you care about is the “Jamich” you’ve come to know and love. Would the fans so incessantly ask forupdates if they truly respected theHUMAN BEINGS behind Jamich?

        Ikaw ba? Have you ever sat with a dying relative? Ishare mo din yung last moments nila sa lahat ng friends and family mo sa Facebook and Twitter. “Thankful” ka naman para sakanila at nagawa nila para sayo db ? Share mo yung fact na nahihirapan na siya huminga or nawawala na memory niya! You owe them that much diba?

        Is it a question of how much you’re thankful for the people whove supported you or how much you respect your dying loved one? Think about that before you spread hypocrisy about “right or wrong”

  7. I like the hypocrisy of some people. They talk about open-mindedness yet have closed their minds to any opinion but their own.

    It doesnt matter if she is coping with the death of Jam, what matters is who she disrespects while she copes.

    Ask yourselves this, in what ways is it “ok” to share thru pictures and videos. something such as the dying of a loved one ?

    And ano ba talaga yung mas importante, yung demands/”requests” ng fans or yung privacy nung namatay? Ano ba ang mas importante para kay Mich? Sino ang mas mahal niya?

    I feel for Mich pero I question her actions.

  8. I honestly don’t feel sorry for Mich to me honest. She’s using her fiancee’s death to gain popularity. You don’t have to post everything on social media. Jam is sick, he has cancer. Ok, we get it. But do you honestly have to show the world that he is getting weaker and weaker? I don’t think so. I don’t think Jam wants to be “pitied” as he is a man. A man wants to feel like one, I don’t think anyone wants to feel like a burden to someone else. Watch Mich’s videos, you’ll hear Jam in the background, refusing to be seen. I would label her a famewhore and I wouldn’t wonder why the netizens call her so.

  9. I don’t know Jamich that much, I just accidently saw a photo (because my young FB friend is a chronic liker of Jamich’s photos) of his family taking random selfies while Vice Ganda is on the background, that is the time Vice visits Jam. I agree with J and that I don’t totally get these people. My father died years ago and I freaked out when some relatives took pictures of him in the coffin. It’s not a good memory, it’s not something you want to reminisce any time of the day and I’m sure this one thought is for crying out loud Universal! Unless you always enjoy attending someone’s burial.
    Yes, we may have a different ways of coping up but what Mich’s doing is outrageously unique and (in my opinion,I don’t care about yours!) lacks sincerity not to mention abuse of social media. You people must know what to share and what not to share. There is a limitation for everything and do not ask me who imposed that limitations, if you dont have one then you’ve got a real problem.Try to observe their young followers (they are actually doing the same, posting and sharing anything under the sun) Imagine young people posting suicide notes on FB or sharing hints that they will commit suicide would you still consider this their way of coping up? Heck this is mental. While trying to update everybody and while you are busy projecting your image to the Social Media, you actually forgot to live your real life. I guess those who tried to justify Mich’s oversharing is also guity of it. If she’s doing this as a form of defense mechanism, I’m not sure. But (sorry) I think this is not normal.

  10. Anya, who are you to say that what she is doing is not normal? How many people with a terminally sick relative have you encountered in your lifetime? See, what you are doing here is judging a situation without really having concrete evidence that what she is doing is not normal. Yes, there are limitations for everything. In this case, on what grounds are you making the claim that Mich is oversharing? I hate to break it to you, but it’s absolutely true that people have different ways of coping with situations. Just because what she is doing is different from what you’d expect, does not necessarily mean that it’s incorrect. In fact, I’ve seen worse. I had a friend whose mother died and she did not know how to properly cope with it, so she went out with her friends every night. On the surface, it would seem like she was unaffected. But you know what? She would go home and cry herself to sleep. My point is, as an outsider, let’s not make harsh criticisms especially when it is involving such a sensitive situation. We’re all human. You might not agree with her defense mechanism but it doesn’t constitute that it’s wrong. Let’s all move on. She is not harming anyone by making these posts. Perhaps it’s her way of releasing it all.

  11. Kane, who told me it’s not normal? I have studied Psych & Human Behavior, Observed a lot if people,got deployed on Hospitals and Evaluates personality test. Sorry if it’s normal to you & that is because you are probably guilty of oversharing yourself because it is clear that you do not see a problem in her behavior. I dont think that what you are referring to (your friend whose mother died then go out everynight) she is not harming anybody– but she’s not setting a good example.

  12. ** I dont think the example you are referring to is the worst scenario. Bottom line there is a limitation for everything & defense mechanism SHOULD be temporary or you’ll lose grasp of the reality. And it’s also good for you to say ‘lets move on’ since I have post this comment weeks ago.

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  1. Mich Liggayu - I know this is very early but we want to ask this, "Is there a life after Jamich for Mich Liggayu?" | Mr. Paandar

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