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Before One News: A Look Back on AksyonTV, 5’s Failed Attempt at a News Channel

AksyonTV was the first 24/7 Filipino language news channel, but financial losses led to its transformation into T5N’s complement channel. (Logo courtesy of The 5 Network)

Next week will herald a new chapter for News5.

On May 28, the news division of The 5 Network (T5N), along with The Philippine Star and BusinessWorld, will launch One News, a 24/7 English language news channel exclusive to Cignal. But before the fireworks take place, here is a look back at 5’s former news channel AksyonTV.

AksyonTV was launched on February 21, 2011, and was initially billed by 5 as the first 24/7 Filipino language news channel on free TV. During its first few years of operation, AksyonTV filled its programming lineup with simulcasts from Radyo5 92.3 News FM, as well as original programs exclusive to the network and other shows that also air on then-TV5.

Over the next several years, however, AksyonTV slowly drifted away from its original purpose and was rendered irrelevant by television think-tanks. The gradual decline of AksyonTV can be attributed to the following factors:

  • Overspending

When AksyonTV was first launched the MVP Group was on a spending tear, pooling all their resources in hopes of making TV5 competitive and at par with long-time giants ABS-CBN and GMA. However, they failed to account the poor reach and infrastructure of the network, leading to financial losses and consequently, this next factor.

  • News5’s Problems

In order to cut its losses, News5 elected to cancel original AksyonTV programs and focused more on 5’s newscasts and radio programs. However, News5 was soon hampered by the departure of numerous top talents and the downsizing of its staff, affecting not only AksyonTV but also 5 overall, leading to this next factor.

  • Arrival of Sports and Entertainment Shows

The lack of any original news programming forced 5 to reformat AksyonTV into a complement channel of T5N, adding ESPN5 programs, entertainment shows and TV shopping to the menu. The change in AksyonTV’s content also led to the launch of Bloomberg Philippines, which eventually morphed into One News.

Overall, AksyonTV was not a bad attempt by News5 in terms of operating a news channel. But had the network improved its reach and infrastructure, AksyonTV might have remained competitive and viable alongside the likes of GMA News TV, DZMM TeleRadyo, CNN Philippines and the ABS-CBN News Channel.

Unfortunately, with the launch of One News next week, it is clear that AksyonTV has outlived its usefulness. One can only hope that 5 will do something about AksyonTV in the immediate future, whether it is rebranding the network or selling it to other broadcast outfits.

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11 thoughts on “Before One News: A Look Back on AksyonTV, 5’s Failed Attempt at a News Channel

  1. *Inb4 JRDV comments to sell Aksyon TV to Brigada for the nth time…*

    Wait for my special, collaborative article on Friday before the anticipation of the MVP’s English news channel.

  2. Not to mention that people still prefer ANC as the “premier” news channel on television. And also CNN Philippines had a resurgence of sorts as well.

    • Thanks, you parrot, it’s because they’re here for almost 22 years for the favorite news channel of the owner of this blog.

      CNN Philippines is rather doing well by not compromising their commitment and quality to news amidst the channel location.

      • If one can look at an ideal news channel for the Filipino, it will always be ANC bar none. That is why News5 is trying to emulate ANC’s formula with One News. As much as we can consider CNN Philippines, they’re more of a bilingual news channel and are also limited in both content and operating hours (for free TV users). Same with GMA News TV and for a while AksyonTV; they are essentially a tabloid version of ANC with showbiz news and crime stories instead of national, foreign and business news.

  3. Anonymous says:

    As always, AksyonTV is like a mirror of The 5 Network as a whole: a promising start and future ruined by overreliance of sports. Sayang talaga, it could have given GMA News TV at the very least a run for its money if only they had more money.

    • It’s not just sports that is to blame. Remember those overpaid and old artists that 5 signed many years ago? That money would’ve been used to improve and maintain the two channels. Alas, both networks are still below standard in terms of reach and quality because MVP went all-out instead of staying patient.

      Now that One News is about to launch, AksyonTV’s future is very much in doubt. Something tells me that 5 should overhaul this channel, scrap the Radyo5 simulcasts and become the home of ESPN5 for all intents and purposes. Because with One News around, AksyonTV is simply useless and worthless at this point.

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