Pinoys disappointed at low return rate of Coldplay’s wristband on Day 1 of PH concert

January 22, 2024 - 5:33 PM
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Coldplay in PH
Coldplay vocalist Christ Martin performs at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan in this photo taken by Anna Lee and posted on the band's Facebook page on Jan. 21, 2024 (coldplay/Facebook)

“Nakakahiya.”

This was how some Filipinos reacted to the low return rate of Coldplay‘s reusable LED wristbands during the first day of their concert in the Philippines.

The British rock band performed for Pinoys on January 19 and 20 at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan for their “Music of the Spheres” world tour which supports their ninth studio album of the same name.

The Grammy-winning band last visited the Philippines in 2016 for their “A Head Full of Dreams” tour.”

Celebrities like Gabbi Garcia, Khalil Ramos, Julie Anne San Jose, Rayver Cruz, Isabelle Daza, Sarah Lahbati, Sofia Andres, Shaina Magdayao, Alexa Ilacad, Maine Mendoza and Rep. Arjo Atayde (Quezon City, First District) were spotted attending the two-day concert.

The first family, including President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., First Lady Liza Araneta Marcos and their sons William Vincent and Rep. Sandro Marcos (Ilocos Norte, First District), also attended the show on Friday.

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Reports said that Coldplay’s concert took the audience “on a journey through the cosmos.”

It was the band’s return to live performances after the COVID-19 pandemic, with a stronger approach towards the environment.

This includes using reusable LED wristbands, which are worn by their audiences for a colorful light show during the concert.

The wristbands are made from 100% compostable, plant-based materials.

After the show, it is collected from the fans, sterilized, and then recharged for the use of other concertgoers.

It has an average return rate of 86% during the first year of the band’s “Music of the Spheres” tour.

The band posts a wristband recycling leaderboard in its shows to make fans aware of its advocacy toward sustainable living. This includes returning the items so they can be used in future concerts.

For the Philippines, it reportedly had a 87% return rate on the concert’s first day, according to the Philippine Concerts account.

It was the lowest among the rest of the countries shown on the leaderboard so far, with Japan having a 97% return rate, Denmark at 96% and Malaysia at 90%.

Online magazine When In Manila reported that the leaderboard was also shown before the concert, when the Philippines did not have a figure yet.

Some Pinoys expressed disappointment following the country’s low wristband return rate on the first day.

“Ang daming pag-remind na isoli [‘yung] wristband pero ang dami pa ring hindi nagbalik!! NAKAKAHIYA!!!!!!” an online user wrote with facepalm emojis.

Another user commented that the low return rate highlighted “the inadequacies of the discipline system in the Philippines.”

“Kupit mentality for the world to see,” commented a different Pinoy with a cursing angry emoji.

“This is not even funny, it reflects [that’s] how Filipinos lack self discipline. May nag-uwi din ng spheres, [‘yung] iba, nag-post pa ng wristbands na inuwi. And, for what? Likes? We can do better,” wrote another user.

Muntinlupa Mayor Ruffy Biazon, who was among those who attended the concert, also lamented the low return rate on the first day.

“What does it speak of about us as a nation?” he said in a flag ceremony on January 22.

“What is the lesson here? The lesson here is about integrity. As they say, integrity is something that you do when no one is looking,” Biazon added.

“Typically, sad to say, we have countrymen that the first thing in their minds is how to circumvent a rule. Instead of following what are the rules, what are the procedures. How do we follow rules and procedures?” he continued.

Biazon commented that seeing the low figures on the leaderboard disappointed him as a Filipino.

“When I saw the numbers that were shown, the sad situation. We as a nation, we seem to be lacking in that area. I hope here in Muntinlupa, not just in the city government but the entire city, can learn how to live with integrity, even in little things,” the mayor said.

“We are not perfect, but we have to have a conscious effort to fix it. That’s what we are calling for,” Biazon added.

Coldplay has been actively seeking to reduce carbon emissions by 50% compared to its past concerts and has been looking for other sustainable efforts that would still guarantee an enjoyable time for audiences.

Proceeds from their current tour will go to reforestation, ocean clean-ups, animal conservation, carbon capture, green technology, environmental law, advocacies and re-wilding and soil restoration.