Understanding the Politeness Approach of Cebuano Millennials


  • Danielle Banal St. Mary's College Quezon City
  • Sheema Bautista St. Mary's College Quezon City
  • Shawn Ng St. Mary's College Quezon City
  • Myca Pascasio St. Mary's College Quezon City
  • Maegan Soriano St. Mary's College Quezon City


Poilteness, Language, Po & Opo, Practices, Zillenials


It has been observed that Filipino cultural practices, particularly the use of po and opo, are still present in the twenty-first century in the younger generation, also known as Gen Z, which are children born in 2000 or later (Galupo, 2019). Practicing the use of po and opo is known to be part of ethical communication to show politeness to older individuals and deemed impolite to be younger and not use the words po and opo when speaking to elders or in authority (Cafe, 2022, p. 102). However, not every Gen Z Filipino use these polite expressions, especially since these may not be part of their dialect, such as the Cebuano dialect. The research aimed to discover how Cebuanos show politeness even without po and opo.The data gathering used was a semi-structured interview that worked with open-ended questions and probing questions to explore their responses further. Six (6) Cebuanos aged 11 to 26 years old were interviewed as they are considered part of Gen Z.The findings of this research is similar to the study of Cabanding & amp; amp; Varua (2014), in which they found that the Aeta community may also not be using the practices po and opo and doesn’t have any equivalent terms of it, but they have other polite terms they use which is “ma’am” or “sir” when approaching someone. Most respondents felt obliged to use these expressions when talking to non-Cebuano speakers. Some said they have not yet experienced being called out, although some have been scolded for not using these words. Cebuanos have a different way of addressing or expressing politeness to other people compared to other regions, such as the people from Luzon. However, due to the influence of the media, internet, and relatives, some Cebuanos still manage to practice po and opo.