Inside Page | Fernan A. Gianan:

LGUs’ job to inquire with Starlink on purchase bid

Aside from a veteran board member who initially doubted the relevance of their appearance during a recent session of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, one more politician expressed doubt about Sinag Kabataan’s advocacy for the Starlink satellite internet service as a necessary tool for local government units in Catanduanes.

The legislator probably misunderstood the intent the youth group headed by this writer’s son, Fred Benedict T. Gianan, and erroneously thought they were acting as agents for Elon Musk.

However, he rightfully questioned how the government could acquire Starlink kits when the US-based company itself accepts only individual applications for subscriptions to its service.

Now, that is for LGUs to find out.

They will have to communicate with Starlink through its website or contact its Philippine partner and inquire officially if LGUs can acquire on their own a number of units for deployment in so-called Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas (GIDAs).

Or they can contact the DICT Secretary Ivan Uy on this issue, especially since the official himself announced last month that the government would spend for the acquisition of the units for the GIDAs until the time the economic situation of the barangays stabilized.


Starlink requires a refundable deposit payment of P5,000 once an application is made.

Now, current government accounting and auditing rules require delivery of the item or service before payment is made.

How will the Commission on Audit deal with this problem, especially if the agency itself decides to purchase units?

The Starlink service agreement provides that the internet satellite service may not be resold to others as a stand-alone, integrated or value-added service. Barangays will have to pay for the monthly fee and provide access to their residents for free at the barangay hall.

The service’s Fair Use Policy also includes a monthly allocation of “Priority Access”, which when used up, the user will continue to have an unlimited amount of “Basic Data” for the remainder of the month.

This means the user will have to limit the number of devices connected to the service to maintain reasonable upload and download speeds.


The service agreement also allows Starlink to restrict, suspend or terminate its service without notice doe any violation of its Acceptable Use Policy.

Among the violations of unacceptable conduct are: accessing without permission or right the accounts or computer systems of others, spoofing the URL, DNS or IP addresses of SpaceX or any other entity, penetrating the security measures of SpaceX or any other person’s computer system, or attempting any of the foregoing; transmitting uninvited communications, data or information, or engaging in other similar activities, including without limitation, “spamming”, “flaming”, and denial of service attacks; intercepting, interfering with, or redirecting email or other transmissions sent by or to others; introducing viruses, worms, harmful code, or Trojan horses on the Internet;  engaging in conduct that is defamatory, fraudulent, obscene, or deceptive; engaging in any conduct harmful to the Starlink network, the Internet generally, or other Internet users; and using the Services or Starlink Kit in any fashion for the transmission or dissemination of images containing child pornography or in a manner that is obscene, sexually explicit, cruel, or racist in nature, or which espouses, promotes, or incites bigotry, hatred, or racism.


THE PENANCE. A man with a nagging secret couldn’t keep it any longer. In the confessional he admitted that for years he had been stealing building supplies from the lumberyard where he worked.

“What did you take?” his priest asked.

“Enough to build my own house and enough for my son’s house. And houses for our two daughters and our cottage at the lake.”

“This is very serious,” the priest said. “I shall have to think of a far-reaching penance. Have you ever done a retreat?”

“No, Father, I haven’t,” the man replied. “But if you can get the plans, I can get the lumber.”

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