GMA

It’s The Most Werpaful Time of the Year (Philippine TV Christmastime 2017-18 Insights)

INDEED.

The most wonderful time of the year is here, but Filipino…

Per tradition, Timow’s Turf heralds the annual holiday programming primer for the fifth time, spanning from today (December 6, 2017) until possibly January 2, 2018.

As it is the first Christmas in the age of Trump, this year, it will be classified according to appropriate categories but not necessarily on periods as in previous editions.

With Christmas and New Year’s Eves both fall on Sunday this year, primetime lineups will definitely have to adjust, especially to ABS-CBN on both cases and GMA on the latter as PTV 4’s main Lotto Draw are forced to be scheduled early at 2:30 p.m.

During this span, teleseryes will normally be scheduled but there are usually no finales and its premieres during the very Christmas/New Year festivity fortnight while trade launches from the South Triangle Duopoly (S.T.D.) and CNN Philippines are happening for the upcoming year (as long as they keep their promises or else).

What else is in store? Jump in for more.

NOTE: Inaccuracies and updates can happen throughout this post.

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Program Visual Case Study: Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko

[AUTHOR’S NOTE: This blog post should serve as a guide for graphic designers, web developers, video editors and social media team.]

KKMK logo

Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko will turn 42 on December 1.

KAPWA KO MAHAL KO is the currently the longest over-all and continuous public service television program in the Philippines since December 1, 1975, on GMA 7. Presented by Connie Angeles and Orly Mercado, it currently airs every Saturday at 5:30 a.m. for half an hour. This television program is very well known for its iconic sign language interpretation window.

As mentioned last month, this show is one of the living cornerstones for Timog Avenue and because of the promotion of this article, it seems their official website is conducting a feedback survey where The Turf took it willingly.

On its 42nd anniversary this coming week, Timow’s Turf investigates visually on the program and what flaws can we constructively resolve that are found intertwined on their TV program, their website and their social media handles.

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Why Are Our Late Night Talk Shows Afraid to Take A Dig on Our Politics?

[AUTHOR’S NOTE: This article is written in anticipation of U.S. President Donald Trump meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte from tomorrow until Tuesday (November 12-14). This is also a comprehensive response to Joshua Jimenez’s Banat entry last July 21. Due to expected vitriol, readership discretion is SERIOUSLY ADVISED.]

 

From tomorrow until Tuesday, US President Donald Trump will meet President Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines after APEC Vietnam 2017.

 

LAST APRIL, the news and opinion site Vox tackled about comedians, particularly in late night shows, becoming “rock stars” for chiding incumbent U.S. President Donald Trump’s unpredictable predicaments and praised them for outsmarting free-to-air and cable news reporters for their low tolerance of bull.

For the internationally conscious rising Filipinos, one can admire the shade throwing of John Oliver, Trevor Noah, Jimmy Fallon and Seth Meyers with less effort via YouTube — if they cannot afford monthly cable or any video-on-demand subscriptions. Some wished it could happen here with the similar-minded leadership and similar-minded hyperpartisan divisiveness but many asked why it barely or never happens in reality.

In America, the jurisdiction of concerned agencies, such as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), is clearly defined and unattached, thus, independently attached from any branch of government. Hence, it’s not easy for Trump to just revoke the license of NBC after getting butthurt over a late night show and demanding “equal time” in his mere personal tweet.

Our counterpart, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) is under the Department of Information Communications and Technology (DICT) – which the term “independent agencies” is legally nonexistent here – but the functions are similar to those in the U.S.

However, the primary answer to the question on where our similarities end and a difference begin would be — as few libertarians would say — our near-absolute historically shaping government/State intervention that leads us to cowardice and unconditional submission.

This is why our talk shows decided to interview most, if not all, showbiz celebrities and non-politician newsmakers and taking digs is diminished as a segment just like the reinstated Word of the Lourd on then-balanced TV5 as its offshoot standalone program, Kontrabando didn’t last.

Imagine if ABS-CBN’s Gandang Gabi Vice was like HBO’s Last Week Tonight, President Duterte would get even more insane to spew more threats of non-renewal of the network’s franchise without end; even though, he did not know he was, ironically and ungratefully, the guest of that show back in 2015 just before his candidacy. (This can also apply to Trump’s ungratefulness to NBC during The Apprentice.)

 

Banat mentioned diminishing audience interest after the initial huge following but notice that the demographic trends are assertively changing and rising (from our millennial generation onwards) – choice seems to be their consensual plea over networks’ profit.

Another question that might be asked if there is enough supply of comedians that takes any dig. To be honest, we do have enough supply – slightly oversupplied — but we don’t see all of them on TV taking such a magnitude of verbal slay.

We don’t hear Allan K talk on that specific topic in Eat Bulaga because of his fear of the admin ally Senator Tito Sotto; Boobay could but can’t due to her regular commitment as a bluffer on Celebrity Bluff (which is not a talk show) while Ethel Booba – the Charot Queen – is barely seen on TV but she’s actively slaying up on Twitter.

Sadly, the last resort of roast throwing would possibly be on comedy sketch programs.

In the past, we do have political spoofing, ironically, in a government-owned network with The Sic O Clock News but not much externally and internally nowadays. Last year, GMA’s Sunday PinaSaya made a spoof of Duterte (portrayed by Jose Manalo) meeting with Trump (portrayed by Mike “Pekto” Nacua).

However, its rival, Banana Sundae, was not able to duplicate it.

Why is it easy for Americans to do them?

Simply, Americans are natural risk-takers; we are not.

While their presidential administrations come and go, their shows still go on despite different presenters once the new season — not necessarily coterminous with their term — kicks in; ours tend to cut short due to their butthurt reactions and spewing threats of the ax before their term ends.

Don’t get it wrong, our comedians can be great talk show hosts to chide as Vice Ganda would but its internal conservative mindset and the eternal network war culture hinders them to take bigger possibilities (i.e. diversity of programming for the networks and diversity of the comedian’s portfolio).

That being said, let’s not give the prospectively returning Medyo Late Night Show with Jojo A. any ideas on his new home on PTV this month as unconditional compliance is still king over defiance. Not to mention, his show might be disrupted in favor of their true star.


Playing it safe is the riskiest choice we can ever make.” — Sarah Ban Breathnach


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Photo courtesy of ABS-CBN

Easier Said than Done: Looking on the Philippine TV’s Undelivered 2017 Offers

[Dedicated to Ed Ching, Anjho Ezekiel Reyes and Jason Aquino]

TWO MONTHS remain now in 2017. For individual persons, they are rushing in to live up their own resolutions, plans or goals whatever they have written for the said year.

For television execs, that is a different story. Some backlogged programs were: (1) returned to its original configuration, (2) delayed to another year, (3) substituted with another similar program or (4) may be scrapped.

With the trade launch season coming; let’s look back on four (4) major TV networks and their own current backlogs.

ABS-CBN

The ticket to stardom before PBB would have become a segment of It’s Showtime this year but Tawag ng Tanghalan still eclipsed it.

Batang 2Ks will remember Star Circle Quest (2004-11) as an instant ticket to stardom before Pinoy Big Brother wrestled it out. Last March, they pledged to revive SCQ as a segment of It’s Showtime. Despite the setup and the auditions, months even before that announcement, their efforts and dreams were down to drain as they just continue with Tawag ng Tanghalan.

MNL48 inks with ABS-CBN for their first Talent Search but the network’s intervention in the music material would prove its fate.

Another aspiring ticket that is on their bucket list is the MNL48 talent reality search. However, the audition process disappointed the fans of 48 girl groups (48GGs); aspirants must require performing within the allowed music material (containing most, if not all, of their network’s current exclusive talents). With that damage done, some of them might reconsider the audition and worse (or better for their standpoint), it might be scrapped, as it is easily forgettable in favor of masa-induced programs.

Pilipinas Got Talent (season 6) is highly unlikely to catch up in the final months of the calendar due to I Can See Your Voice and Little Big Shots but it may carry on in 2018 like the previous season (in 2016 for 2015) since auditions began to kick in (hopefully) and find whoever current show would finally wind down the earliest and call it a season.

Unfortunately, it’ll be a slim to no dice for Team Animazing block to resume, considering their unresolved 5 o’clock crisis and the advancement of viewer demographic and technological trends.

GMA

Celebrity Bluff was part of their program goals and did resume on the airwaves last June 3 but it maintained on the regular Saturday night lineup and not on a daily basis as promised because of the masa’s solidified base in Wowowin.

Other than that, Eat Bulaga dabarkad Ryan Agoncillo was to have his own show titled Ryan’s Playlist but instead it was given to the Lolas of Kalyeserye (portrayed by Jose Manalo, Wally Bayola, and Paolo Ballesteros) for The Lola’s Beautiful Show.

Other series that were left behind in Kamuning/Timog include Text Serye and Project Achieved. The former might sent to failure and the latter was not achievable yet the closest substitute they currently broadcast would be GRIND: Get Ready, It’s A New Day.

Lip Sync Battle Philippines would have been on the third season but with exclusive stars defected to the other network due to non-renewal of contract or their displeasure in service, it may not continue to set sail, not even next year.

TV5

Brillante Mendoza, the famous indie film director, already aired Brillante Mendoza Presents in the first half of the year. However, its awaited masterpiece, Amo, a series focusing on both sides of the relentless Drug War, has been consistent in promotion but its premiere kept on delaying from August and then to September but not a single episode was aired as of this moment.

Other than him, Bloggers TV and Travel 360 were supposed to be premiered on late July weekend but instead, Manindigan and Turning Point took its places. According to Mitch Isip, a representative from The Bloggers Magazine, they had to reshoot in order to produce the best quality they want to emanate. So far, not a word of promotion was emanated both in the small screens and in the social media.

However, with the deal with ESPN — as ESPN5 — solidified last month, it can easily drown out any of the said programs without recourse.

CNN Philippines

Lastly, the sole news channel on free TV has some backlogs as well. Media Newser Philippines (MNP) has detailed an article about the upcoming programs this 2017 last December.

So far, all of their nominal programs were aired according to plan — including Political Insider where it was axed after its host, Gilbert Remulla, engaged in an unprofessional Twitter battle — except My Philippines, a local travel program, which has yet to be promoted and to be materialized.

Unnamed programs mentioned in MNP would be a standalone daily entertainment program and a business newscast.

The former could not be developed due to the simple, single reason: their entertainment news policy is more on Hollywood and less on exclusive stars predominantly found on the networks of South Triangle Duopoly (STD). While the latter can be easily figured with three reasons:

  • It cannot find their “A” person —  a matching challenger — to compete against ANC’s Cathy Yang.
  • They have to sacrifice both the morning version and the afternoon (Global) of Newsroom to coincide with the opening and closing bells of the Philippine Stock Exchange.
  • Given the unexpected predicaments from political engagements, its patchy political coverages could hamper the flow of the said newscast.

Conclusion

With 2018 looming into the horizon, the four — or three abled — networks should revise their plans to keep its promise before their respective trade launches take place so that its loyal and prospective advertisers have the best worth of their money and earn a goodwill or it will end up merely in what Ed Ching believes to be “false hopes.”


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Photo courtesy of:

  • Philippine Showbiz Republic (psr.ph)
  • Hallo Hallo Entertainment, Inc.

Timow’s Open Pit No. 2: PHTV@64: Of Living Legends & Legacies

TODAY, October 23, 2017 marks the 64th anniversary of Philippine television and here on Timow’s Turf, we opened the second Open Pit on a matter related to the very significance of the number.

The number 64 is a perfect square number – in this case, a square of 8 (a number that is very auspicious in East Asia). In games, it’s the total number of squares of a board in chess and checkers. Baby Boomers have The Beatles’ “When I’m Sixty-Four” and the Batang 90s have a Nintendo 64. In personal computers, some of them run on a 64-bit architecture.

On this article, we will discuss about our program’s living legends and legacies.

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Siphoning Political Livestreams: It’s A Post-Truth Thing

[Dedicated to Ralph Domingo]

LAST WEDNESDAY, the Senate probe on purveying fake news was a newsworthy story for the digitally savvy millenials in the toughest political age.

Mocha Uson in the Senate

Mocha Uson was grilled before the Senate last Wednesday for proliferating and purveying fake news.

In the said hearing, the senators, especially Nancy Binay, grilled Presidential Communications Office Assistance Secretary Mocha Uson and RJ Nieto (the webmaster of Thinking Pinoy) for proliferating disinformation and degrading opposition politicians while serving in their respective government positions. Other personalities present were Atty. Abigail Valte (the deputy spokesperson of predecessor Noynoy Aquino) and few representatives from the legitimate media.

The next hearing over the said topic will be announced later.

Being a legislative hearing of interest, livestreams from media outlets will definitely be the part of the drill. Anyone connected from social media will notify you real-time.

For its diehard supporters, it was an opportunity to siphon such sources and claim it as theirs without proper attribution.

Whenever some are so busy with important things throughout the day but they want to know what really happened to the country, they can simply search on to YouTube and voila!

Its search engine, the terms you input might land on diehard pro-administration YouTube channels than those from legitimate media outlets and that is a serious business.

How to spot a YouTube video from a die hard?

While fake news sites are obstructed through third-party web browser extensions, its YouTube channels, sadly, are not and thus, are definitely shareable in most social media platforms. However, it’s not difficult to spot a YouTube video that was created from a diehard supporter. Here are the five common signs.

Screenshot (38)

A screenshot of the famous Senate hearing last Wednesday. Look at Rappler’s (a verified YouTube channel); compare that to Tawanan at Balita PH or other similar channels.

  • The custom thumbnail abuse. This feature is one of the primary ways of deception. They take a screenshot, paste it on a graphics software, add some WordArt and it’s all set for publishing.
  • The loudmouth title. Most searches in caps lock (LIKE THIS ONE) in order to provoke and to grab their attention. The titles were usually defending pro-administration officials and shaming the opposition. Adding “PANOORIN” is not necessary but it is a decisive factor for their view count.
  • The consistent description structure. Most of the video descriptions usually follow the same structural formula as with their related uploads. That also includes the lack of any proper attribution.
  • The channel is not verified. A verified YouTube channel are those with a check mark and the prerequisite: they must have at least 100,000 subscribers. Thus, pro-administration channels might not reach that number and consequently, might not be verified.
  • The video content usually includes the titles. They are usually located at the top and/or bottom (in the letterbox format) or lower graphics (intentionally obscuring those from media outlets) rendered from their desktop-based non-linear editing software.

Aren’t they supposed to be prosecuted for infringement or are they exonerated and called it a legal piracy with state-sponsored blessing? This is where BusinessWorld’s article last November drives us now. Whatever they have done was credulous or simply in Filipino, nauto.

The Turf’s Insight

Siphoning off content from legitimate media organizations (such as ANC, GMA, Rappler, Inquirer, CNN Philippines, etc.) is somehow an indirect way of delegitimizing and discrediting its professional journalists in order to pursue their absolutist agenda without any checks and senses of right or wrong and to undermine his political opposition as “enemies of the state” with all their minds, hearts and souls.

Sadly, their eyes that were dictated by hasty generalizations, treated the press, which is considered the fourth estate, at par with terrorists (like the Maute Group) as the “enemy of the state.”

As mentioned last November, the culture of impunity did not just happen the traditional outside of goons, guns and gold but also in the cyberspace with keyboards, trolls and coins. Well, a study in Mexico finally holds true as our country was ranked worst over-all in such terms in their Global Impunity Index report from Universidad De Las Americas.

Think about it. According to Reporters without Borders (RSF), the Philippines is ranked 127th of 180 in the 2017 Press Freedom Index, which is situated at the “difficult situation.”  Given the social media age and the current circumstances, where will our country – that is significantly contributed to the global post-truth era – land in a few years that we asked and deserved?


P.S. For those readers in the United States who happened to have the same sentiment, you’re not alone.


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Photo courtesy of the Philippine Star. Screenshot grabbed by the author.

FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano @ 2: On Its Longevity and On Its Despondents

TWO YEARS for a primetime teleserye is a rare feat in the chronicles of Philippine television.

Today, September 28, FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano is attaining that milestone; during the course of the 20-year-old-film-turned-teleserye, we have traveled along to the saga of SPO2 Cardo Dalisay (Coco Martin) in the Philippine National Police.

Length comparisons & contrasts

One may think that the immediate TV Patrol lead-out series is as long to this decade’s daytime counterpart, Be Careful with My Heart. Well, by tonight, FPJAP will air its 519th episode and according to their recent announcement of ending up by January 2018, the series might wrap up with 605 episodes (assuming if ending on January 26) – but it’s still 17 short of BCWMH’s 622. In such terms, it could be better said that FPJAP can be called the 2010s’ equivalent to the original Pangako sa ‘Yo.

The motives behind

While some viewers defected to the rival giant over their repetitive and lengthened plot, GMA’s seven counteroffers failed to defeat Kuya Cardo’s engagements, according to Kantar. What FPJAP drives them so successful?

  • Injecting and integrating the sense of realism. Even though mostly rated SPG, the show was able to hook up due to the picturesque from the moderately paced setting of ordinary people and fast-paced action of Cardo. In the midst of the scene, is timely with current events (such as what is happening in Marawi) or within the season (e.g. Christmas, Holy Week, Back-to-School). Finally, they give real-life lessons (a.k.a. Ligtas Tips) on how to be alert in dealing with relatable situations.

  • Star building for the young and for the fallen. During the earlier course of the show, two child stars became part of the ensemble – Simon Ezekiel Pineda (Onyok) and McNeal “Awra” Briguela (Makmak) as the supporting roles. Their significant moments in the spotlight helped raised the roof of social media attention. Although the former went away to normalize his childhood, the latter pursued to take the risk with Wansapanataym as Amazing Ving. This is where GMA’s artist management failed in nurturing child stars. Aside from the young, the fallen stars from its rival were also given a chance to shine. Remember what happened to ex-Starstruck Aljur Abrenica. After his contract expired, he entered Star Magic due to his contempt with the persistent favorable treatment to veterans (No offense, Marian Rivera.) and gave him immediately the first break there.
  • Acceptance of simple elements. The theme song “Wag Ka Nang Umiyak” (by Gary Valenciano) and its signature zoom-in dramatic shots have been immortalized due to netizens’ humorous purposes – be it politics or any forms of pop culture. For the production crew, they take it with a grain of salt and compliment it as flattery.
  • Passionate production crew. Throughout the last two years, it seems the production crew, amidst tiresomeness, was satisfied in contributing to the success of the series. However, critics are showing concerns on their collective health concerns following the case of Francis Pasion’s passing just days after directing On the Wings of Love last year.

Over all, it won different television awards from the major award giving bodies (e.g. PMPC Star Awards and Box Office Entertainment Awards), the Anak TV Seal, the Church via the Catholic Mass Media Awards, different college student bodies across the country and the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) for its Golden Dove Awards. It was also given a special citation from the CIDG.

There’s the nub

While we understand that the politically keen’s standpoint of Kuya Cardo’s efforts could not be replicated under the actual PNP’s org chart due to general distrust, the real nub of this article is for those who are despondent with the show and called it “cancer.”

Initially, considerable psychological factors of tuning out and short attention span of the typical Filipino masa, an average teleserye last from 3-6 months depending on the flow of the story. It can be extended as they wish if they fared successfully. The Turf already made several proposals and a quick post to make primetime television’s lineup better without posing too much health risks for producers and artists and consumers (i.e. you, dear viewers) the freedom to choose whatever show they want to watch but then, the Big Bosses of the Duopoly are too reluctant to materialize because as of most of you would say, money talks.

Nonetheless, for the fed-up viewers, you still have to wait for four months for the agony to finish — unless an extension is announced.


Timow’s Turf would personally like to thank John Rodrigo Diaz Valdez for supplying the count of challenging GMA shows.


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Why Don’t We Have Our Own ‘Jeopardy’?

(Dedicated to The Professional Heckler & So What’s News)

TODAY – tonight, rather — I Can See Your Voice’s (ABS-CBN) Sunday iteration will challenge the spiritually reviving karaoke-based game show, All-Star Videoke (GMA).

However, here on Timow’s Turf, we will neither talk on any of the two; despite both entertaining, they are not for stimulation, as it can be or is a form of escapism (depending on one’s personal philosophy).

Most of you might say, “Why not a trivia quiz show?” but some would raise a common objection because there is already Celebrity Bluff (GMA) but then answered back, saying that they need direct, ordinary – not indirect, celebrity – participation just like Jeopardy.

As exactly said on the tin, this special feature will find the answer to the situation but first, let’s delve into the related background before answering the question.

Show background

Currently running on its 34th season, Jeopardy is an American trivia show, presented by Alex Trebek. The show features a quiz competition in which contestants are presented with general knowledge clues in a form of an answer and they must respond in a form of a question.

The first two rounds

Contestants will have to pick a category and a clue value. After the clue is fully read aloud, any contestant may ring in, respond verbally in a form of a question; if the response is right, the corresponding value is added, get it wrong, and it’s deducted.

However, there is one “Daily Double” hidden in the first round and two in the second but before the clue is revealed, the contestant must declare a wager up to one’s current score. Get the response right and it adds value or otherwise, it’s subtracted.

Final Jeopardy

The contestants who have positive score after two rounds will proceed to the Final Jeopardy. There, the category is revealed before the commercial break. During the break, the contestants will enter their final wager (from 0 to their current score) in the electronic display. After the break, the host will read the final clue and then, they have to write their response within 30 seconds.

Afterwards, the contestants’ responses are revealed in order of their pre-Final Jeopardy scores from lowest to highest. Like the two rounds, if they respond correctly and properly, the wager adds the current score while incorrect answering, failure to respond or failure to phrase as a question deducts it.

The contestant that has the highest score wins and returns in the following match and will lead on selecting the first clue on the next match.

Jeopardy’s involvements with Filipinos

Fans of this show will remember Ken Jennings winning 74 straight matches in 75 appearances back in 2004 – the longest streak in the game show’s history but on December 8, 2014, a Filipino named Patrick Fernandez from Irvine, California participated but failed to defeat challenger Ann Conger, landing in second place.

Our country has been mentioned in clues ranging from lechon (food) to Alma Moreno (politics).

What are ‘complicated reasons?’

Now we go back to the main question: Why we don’t even have a localized Jeopardy?

If your answers were any one of these: network war culture, overemphasized pandering to the masses, or anti-intellectualism. You do have a point.

The likes of the Battle of the Brains or the Digital LG Quiz of the 1990s and early 2000s are now portable in our pockets but free data promos in mobile communication duopoly excluded websites that could enrich minds for understanding general and specific knowledge. Hence, we have a double-edged consequence of a very significant populace that is prone or at an irreversible point of disinformation and misinformation — making materialization an obstacle. In addition, the nature of the show will interest few despite the gradually rising share.

Interestingly, Jeopardy franchises were neither acquired nor materialized in Southeast Asia. Had done so, Singapore would have been the first but Indonesia claimed it — citation needed — but without any signs of the latter’s emergence.

Thought-stimulating experiment needing questions

Should a network acquired the local franchise; it would have been easy for ABS-CBN due to experience as GMA would go original and TV5 would always destine to fail. Of course, the main objection to this is the selection of contestants that are mostly celebrities at the expense of audience exploitation, which is contrary to their longtime philosophy of servicing the Filipino. Remember their version of Family Feud? Despite the ratings and clear classification as a thought stimulating show, it fared no better than its predecessor networks due to such treatment.

If they promise to come clean, the next in the checklist would be hosting. In the recent years, three men are well-renowned hosting franchised shows: Billy Crawford, Robi Domingo & Luis Manzano.

Most of you complained about the trending host rotation: Wala nga bang iba kundi sila? (Don’t you have another than them?) Currently, Crawford is still hosting Little Big Shots as Manzano is just getting started with ICSYV; so, Robi Domingo would have definitely been a no-brainer but of course, Robi is busy with University Town as part of the UAAP. Thus, we need a new one.

All right, assuming that settled it, the last thing is the time slot. When kids come back home from school in the afternoon, there is a good chance that they will turn on the TV – if they don’t have mobile devices and that’s why Jeopardy would serve better at that time. The sole benefit is one less slot for cringe-worthy, SPG-laced and cancerous teleserye in Kapamilya Gold but the offsetting drawback is always the never-ending resolution of the 5:00 p.m. dilemma outside Metro Manila.


What do you think? Is it time for a real Jeopardy Philippines?


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One Radio Network Must Go (and Another Must Gain)

[AUTHOR’S NOTE AND WARNING: The annual Big Reveal or the August Roast this year is on TV5. Initially, it was supposed to be about Sports5’s broadcast overlap with FIBA Asia Cup tomorrow and the 29th Southeast Asian Games on the 19th but due to PTV’s return to cover the latter after 10 years, it was shelved and it will be focused on TV5’s radio counterpart. As usual, this banter might be offensive; reader’s discretion is advised.]

Whose radio network is getting rekt this year?

RECENTLY, a fad in the national social media landscape titled “One Must (or Has To) Go” asked respondents just one of the choices – whether food or a thing – would be abandoned for the rest of their life. Of course, The Turf won’t beat out of this.

If there’s one radio network that has to go, according to the Boses ng Madla poll since July 17, most of them responded that they would ditch those from TV5 (i.e. Radyo5) with 38.71%.*

Indeed, this is how Ralph Domingo, the webmaster of From the Tube, perceived and described after few years of concerned monitoring as his constructive criticisms fall on deaf ears.

Since 2010, Radyo5 defied the typical FM landscape of being all-music by adding news, talk, and public affairs. Throughout their running lives, they catered to the public utility vehicles (especially the LTFRB-defending taxi drivers) and established their Taxi Squad but as of now, we are unsure of the latter’s whereabouts.

Last year, their programming began to change as some famous personalities were displaced to serve the Duterte administration and their important news coverage related under this Presidency were downplayed.

This mishandling and dismal performance let station manager Gladys Lana-Lucas accountable and hence, surrendered to The Philippine Star President Miguel Belmonte’s hands. Ralph made a laundry list for him but sadly, none of them is implemented, as he is still preoccupied on their family-owned newspaper company.

He lamented Reliance that they are heavily “living on borrowed time.” Hold that Cueshé’s song for a moment.

It is no wonder that Kevin Trinidad, Ralph’s former blog visitor, who used to believe in all TV5’s divisions as an alternative to the duopoly, now boisterously mocked over it and abandoned that patronage after realizing their constant failures.

This begs a comprehensive question, “If Radyo5 finally gave up, who will take its place?

One of my colleagues, John Rodrigo Diaz Valdez suggested that his hometown broadcaster, Brigada, should be its prospective replacement.

Doing some background checks, the tri-media organization was founded by former Bombo Radyo anchor Elmer Catulpos in 2005 in General Santos City as a daily tabloid newspaper for Mindanao. Two years later, he diversified to health-line products and in 2009 to the radio (a year before Radyo5’s turn). Shortly after the airwave inception, it became Top 2 radio station in the GenSan market. It was not until 2013 when they expanded across the country and a year after, the Mega Manila market’s inauguration made it as a rising powerhouse ready to compete with their Manila-based giants.

THE RISING RADIO MOGUL. Elmer Catulpos is the CEO of Brigada Mass Media Corporation.

I would agree with JRDV, as I was able to hear my local Brigada station – Brigada Pampanga (DWCL 92.7 FM) – a few times beginning this year.

So what makes Brigada a better choice to replace Radyo5? There are four reasons I can enumerate.

First, although they are strikingly similar in programming structure and somehow amicable to the Duterte administration or concerning authorities in terms of news slant, they have more radio stations nationwide with 34 (six more to be aired in Palawan) running stations against Radyo5’s seven (7) – almost 6 to 1.

Second, in Mega Manila alone, Brigada’s DWEY 104.7 have the same transmitting power as Radyo5’s DWFM 92.3 with 25 kW but the former has better and consistent effective radio power (ERP) with 127.66 kW over the latter’s 75-120 kW.

Third, despite their national office in Makati City and the transmitter in Batangas City due to limited FM spacing in the metropolis, it has led to inaudibility and inaccessibility for car and cell phone radios during rush hour; still, Brigada took advantage by creating a free Android app that can live stream any of their FM stations – anywhere, real-time.

Last but not the least, instead of scouting third party advertisers – which is risky if the commercial radio prospects continue to fail – Brigada decided to sustain their own revenue by selling and promoting, as mentioned earlier, their own products such as Power Cells, DriveMax, Guard-C, Panamed and Aero Lube.

That being mentioned, I reaffirmed that Brigada is a viable candidate to succeed a major radio network with a myriad of unresolved disgraceful records. For now, it is just a dream as only time will tell if Manny V. Pangilinan finally decides to wave the white flag over the division and to divest that segment entirely to Mr. Catulpos.


*The other results of the initially established BnM poll were as follows: MBC with 21.51%, GMA with 13.98%, ABS-CBN with 11.83%, PBS with 5.38% and others (including Brigada) with 8.60%. Adjustments of the other responses will be posted.


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Photo credits:

  • Electronic Design
  • MindaNews / Rommel G. Rebollido

Moving Out of Broadway is the Hardest Thing to Do…

Broadway Centrum has been the home of Eat Bulaga for 22 years.

(This post is dedicated in memory of my paternal grandmother, Nanay Miriam Paragas, who passed away last Wednesday night.)

LAST MAY, my paternal family went to Antipolo for the annual summer outing. We passed over Broadway Centrum to and from the destination and it triggered me about a discussion of a transfer from it for a noontime variety show last year on PHTV Facebook Group where I am currently sitting in as an administrator.

In time for the 38th anniversary of Eat Bulaga, Timow’s Turf will neither discuss about the current trends of their segments nor their dabarkads but on the fate of the studio building that housed it and its difficulty of letting it go. (more…)