‘Filipinx’ vs ‘Filipinos’: US food mag changes caption of tapsilog post

January 24, 2022 - 5:04 PM
Photo of tapsilog, the Philippine flag at the opening ceremony of the 30th Southeast Asian Games (Instagram, The STAR/Bon Appetit, Michael Varcas)

Condé Nast-owned American food and entertainment magazine Bon Appétit changed the caption of its post about a Filipino meal after getting called out for using the term “Filipinx” in its caption.

Last Saturday, Bon Appétit posted a photo of tapsilog, a breakfast staple in the Philippines, on its Instagram account.

In the caption, it described the food as “a portmanteau of the dish’s three components: tapa (beef), sinangag (garlic fried rice), and itlog (fried egg).”

Prior to this, however, the word that was used in the caption was “Filipinx” instead of “Filipino.”

The magazine’s followers noticed the term used and schooled them about the term “Filipinx.”

The Instagram handler of Bon Appétit later changed the caption.

“We’ve updated this post to use the phrase Filipino instead of Filipinx,” the editor’s note read.

In the comments section, Instagram users pointed out why they opposed the usage of “Filipinx” in any context.

“Filipinx is a strictly Filipino-American invention. The word Filipino is gender-neutral in itself, just like the language,” writer Regina Belmonte said.

“I have to agree with everyone here that ‘Filipino’ is already a gender neutral term and that Filipinx is just not necessary. Filipinx makes about as much sense as saying Americxn. Plus, I’ve only ever seen it used by Fil-Ams and white people, many of whom don’t even speak Filipino/Pilipino to begin with,” another Instagram user said.

Filipinx is a controversial term Filipino-Americans overseas use to refer to Filipinos of the LGBTQ community living in the United States and other Western nations.

Some of them also use Filipinx instead of the historically correct term, “Filipino,” to represent the Philippines.

READ: Is ‘Filipinx’ a correct term to use? Debate for ‘gender-neutral’ term for Filipino sparked anew 

The word became popular among social media discussions after Dictionary.com, a widely-used English language platform, added it in its ever-growing database in September 2020.

The Filipino-related terms added that year are Filipinx, “Pinxy,” “Pinoy,” “Filipina,” and “Pinay.”

READ: A look at Philippine-related terms added to Dictionary.com and how Filipinos are using them 

It should be noted, however, that in Philippine history and as stated in the Constitution, the nationality of the citizens of the Philippines, regardless of gender identity, are called Filipinos.

The term Filipino is also used to refer to the national language of the country.

It was stated on Article XIV, Section 6, which states the following:

“The national language of the Philippines is Filipino. As it evolves, it shall be further developed and enriched on the basis of existing Philippine and other languages.”

All the fuss about tapsilog meal

Apart from the use of the term “Filipinx” in the caption, some Instagram and Reddit users perceived that the amount of rice in the tapsilog photo of the magazine is not enough.

“The severe lack of rice on this plate is problematic, who styled this lol,” one Instagram user said.

“Nakaka-trigger yung ratio of rice vs tapa,” another Reddit user commented.

Filipinos are known for eating rice as it is a staple food in the nation. In 2009, Ricepedia said rice is one of the main food consumed that year.

Meanwhile, the author of the Bon Appétit article named Arlyn Osborne, described tapsilog as a meal that can be enjoyed any time of the day.

“Though silog is traditionally served for breakfast—occasionally alongside spicy vinegar, fresh tomato, cucumber, or atchara (a kind of pickled papaya)—it makes a savory, satisfying meal any time of day,” she wrote.

Osborne’s recipe for her version of the breakfast meal, tapsilog, can be read here.