Ice bucket challenge crazy: Philippines ranks 8th in participation

Posted at 08/29/2014 6:16 PM | Updated as of 08/30/2014 2:54 AM

MANILA - The Philippines was ranked 8th in the list of top 10 countries which participated in the ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) Ice Bucket Challenge.

On Friday, social media site Facebook released the list which includes countries the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, Puerto Rico, and India.

The ranking is based on data from the social media giant on the viral activity seen on the platform related to the challenge between June 1 and August 17.

According Facebook, over 28 million people have joined the conversation about the ice bucket challenge including posting, commenting or liking a challenge post.

It also said that 2.4 million videos related to the ice bucket challenge have been shared on the social media site.

"Public figures have generated a substantial portion of the engagement around the challenge since June, even Facebook’s own Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg participated and nominated friends this week," the report wrote.

Zuckerberg challenged billionaire and Microsoft founder Bill Gates for the challenge. A YouTube video of Gates' ice bucket challenge has garnered 18 million views.

In the Philippines, various celebrities and personalities such as Kris Aquino, Anne Curtis, comedian Vice Ganda, and couples Luis Manzano and Angel Locsin have also joined the cause.

Various government officials have also answered the call with no less than Justice Secretary Leila De Lima dumping a bucket of ice water over her head in front of reporters.

Drawing flak

However, despite the support it has been garnering, raising more than $90 million (almost P4 billion), the challenge has had its fair share of critics.

The Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines has a reminder to those taking the ice bucket challenge, which supports research efforts of the disease. It urges followers to be wary of organizations funding stem cell research.

Officials of the National Water Resources Board, while acknowledging that it is for a good cause, have also reminded Filipinos to be mindful about the impending water crisis in 2015.

The challenge

The social media craze, which started in the U.S., dares participants to dump a bucket of ice over their head or donate to the ALS Association, or any foundation pursuing research on the disease.

However, as it has unfolded on social media, celebrities tagged to do the challenge still make significant donations despite agreeing to take up the dare.

The disease, otherwise known as the "Lou Gehrig's Disease," leaves those inflicted without the ability to walk, talk, and feed themselves.