PCOO’s infographics on difference between MECQ, GCQ confuse social media users

May 26, 2021 - 1:04 PM
Illustration shows an infographic of PCOO on MECQ and GCQ released May 22. (PCOO/Facebook; Ariel Paredes via Pexels)

The Presidential Communications Operations Office on Friday released an infographic on Facebook that was supposed to tell the differences between the modified enhanced community quarantine and the general community version.

However, it seemed to only show the similarities between the two quarantine phases which later confused some social media users.

The infographic in question was supposed to tell the difference of MECQ and GCQ during activities such as mass gatherings, religious services and necrological services.

It was part of a series or an album that advises the public about the differences between the guidelines under MECQ and GCQ.

All the infographics bear the title “Difference between MECQ and GCQ.”

“Ang General Community Quarantine o GCQ ay ang transition phase sa pagitan ng MECQ at MGCQ. Ibig sabihin, mas maluwag na ang mga ipinapatupad na protocol. Alamin ang pagkakaiba ng MECQ at GCQ sa cards na ito,” read the post.

Despite having no difference on the guidelines for mass gatherings, religious and necrological services, the infographic was still titled “Difference between MECQ and GCQ.” No additional caption was provided to indicate that it is a part of a series of posts.


As of writing, the infographic in question earned more than 7,400 shares, 10,000 reactions where most are laughing emojis.

In the comments section, some social media users criticized it as misleading to the public.

“Misleading post…should be similarities not ‘difference/s,’” one user said.

“So inaadmit niyo na wala talagang pinagkaiba?” another user wrote.

The infographic also reached subreddit r/Philippines where Reddit users likewise quipped that even the government workers are confused with their classification.

“Kahit yung gobyerno nalilito na sa walang kwentang CQ system nila,” one user said.

“What’s the difference? Philippine government: Yes,” another user wrote.

When the Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) first came up with the different quarantine measures under the previous national action plan in 2020, the industries allowed to operate and the differences in the restrictions were clear.

The national government, however, changed the guidelines during the succeeding shift in quarantine classifications.

These confusing guidelines and the little window time to implement them eventually drew public uproar online as Filipinos stressed that they cause the delay of work, activities and other operations.

The IATF-EID was also criticized for labelling the quarantine phases differently despite having similar guidelines.
Metro Manila mayors were criticized last month after they recommended a new type of quarantine phase called “flexible modified enhanced community quarantine.”
This proposal drew flak as some Filipinos criticized the purpose of introducing a new quarantine phase, saying that the government is only confusing the public more.