news, Philippines, public affairs, television

As ‘TV Patrol’ turns 27

This week marks the 28th anniversary of TV Patrol. Here’s a history lesson about the longest-running Filipino-language newscast on television, as published during the week of the program’s 27th anniversary.

PinoyJourn: Stories behind the Stories

By Andrew Jonathan S. Bagaoisan

Collage of TV Patrol logos from 1987 to 2014 TV Patrol’s logos from 1987 to 2014

For most Filipinos, it is TV Patrol that has been their window to recent history for the longest time.

It has chronicled the ups and downs of the Fifth Republic, some of them coinciding with its own. Its headlines have shown scandals in the halls of power and brawls in obscure barangay corners. And its subjects have ranged from the ordinary to the influential.

The past 12 months were no exception to big news.

TV Patrol’s crews, reporters, and anchors took their cameras to the farthest and the worst, to the best and the most awe-striking. They were at the fringes of two border disputes and at the crossfire of a downtown skirmish. They uncovered schemes of greed and deceit and covered the outrage that followed.

They saw white smoke signal change in a centuries’ old institution, welcomed…

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entertainment, news, public affairs, Sports, television

FTT Year 2013 in Review: Other Networks

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2014, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article will focus on the minor TV networks in the Philippines.

Highlights

Solar Entertainment again shuffled its networks last December. Solar News Channel left UHF Channel 21 for the clearer signals of VHF Channel 9. In exchange, ETC was moved back to UHF Channel 21. In the months leading up to the exchange, SNC’s flagship programs ‘Solar Network News‘ and ‘Solar Nightly News‘ began airing on ETC, albeit only for free TV viewers.

The beginning of the year also saw Eagle Broadcasting’s Net 25 adopt their own version of TeleRadyo during the weekday slots. The apparent reason behind the simulcasts of DZEC 1062 programs is to compensate for the lack of original programming that has haunted the network for several years. In addition, Net 25 aired Iglesia ni Cristo Centennial specials, which is not mandatory considering the network already has INC-TV 49 on free TV.

Lowlights

IBC-13, perhaps the most irrelevant network in the country, lost TV5’s AKTV in May after its blocktime contract expired. Despite that, it was allowed to air the PBA Governors’ Cup games until the end of the quarterfinals. But while the network was able to air two United Football League Cup playoff games and a replay of the Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios fight, IBC continued to suffer from declining revenue and repetitive programs. And with the network still not following the MTRCB ratings guidelines, it looks like IBC will face more problems come 2014.

In March, the government-owned PTV-4 accepted a new charter signed by President Noynoy Aquino that enables the government to infuse P5 billion to revitalize the network. As it stands, the network is expected to rebuild its aging infrastructure and upgrade its existing facilities. However, the network continues to experience problems with its programming, especially when it aired UNTV’s ‘Ang Dating Daan’ for a brief period.

Outlook

Heading into 2014, several minor stations will enter the crossroads of their broadcasting lives. Solar Entertainment is currently in talks with San Miguel Corporation’s Ramon Ang for a potential minority stake on the company. IBC-13 continues to look for a new suitor, while sister network PTV-4 tries to take advantage of a new charter. And Eagle Broadcasting’s Net 25 and INC-TV will celebrate the Iglesia ni Cristo’s centennial. With that said, expect a rollercoaster of broadcasting emotions this 2014 for the minor networks.

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entertainment, news, Philippines, public affairs, radio, Sports, television

AksyonTV Ends 24/7 Broadcasts

Once the first 24/7 Filipino language news channel on free TV, AksyonTV ceased its 24/7 airing on December 1.

What was once the first all-Filipino 24-hour news channel on free TV is now a distant memory. AksyonTV decided to sign off at midnight of November 30, a surprising move considering the network’s high expectations from its opening broadcast.

Not a few notice this, but since the programs from the defunct AKTV block on IBC joined AksyonTV, the network found themselves in trouble sustaining a 24/7 news broadcast. And coupled with the lack of revenue being generated alongside TV5, it became obvious that the higher operating costs were to blame for AksyonTV cutting short its on-air operations.

With the end of the 24/7 broadcast, AksyonTV had to say goodbye to re-runs of some of their programs, as well as Radyo5 simulcasts such as ‘Morning Calls’ and ‘Todo Bigay’. Instead they begin their broadcasts on weekdays with a simulcast of TV5’s ‘Good Morning Club‘, before ending it with AksyonTV originals. Then on weekends, they both start and end their broadcasts with the AksyonTV originals.

Even before ceasing the 24/7 broadcasts, some of the programs aired on AksyonTV became victims of the entry of AKTV refugees. The simulcasts of TV5’s T3: Reload and Aksyon ended before the PBA Governors’ Cup, while original programs such as ‘CNN Konek‘ ended before the start of the NCAA season.

AksyonTV’s decision to end its 24/7 broadcast leaves the ABS-CBN News Channel and the Solar News Channel as the only active 24/7 news networks in the country. And considering AksyonTV’s viewership being aimed at the ‘masa’ market, it may be the wise move to do. Now the big question is, what’s next for the suddenly beleaguered news network of Manny V. Pangilinan?

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news, Philippines, public affairs, television

Solar News Channel Goes to Channel 9

Solar News Channel will go national starting tomorrow with a move to RPN channels across the Philippines.

For the fifth time since Solar took over operations of the Radio Philippines Network, Channel 9 will take on a new identity. The all-news network Solar News Channel will move to RPN starting tomorrow, featuring the same programming along with upcoming dialect-based news programs and talk shows.

Meanwhile, its previous iteration ETC has taken over SNC’s place at SBN 21. ETC previously called channel 21 home from 2008-11, and was one of Solar’s erstwhile cable networks to embrace the move to free TV.

Solar’s history with RPN started as a blocktimer in 2007. At that time few people knew about the network’s financial problems. Initially the agreement with Solar was made in hopes of revitalizing RPN. But as the years went by Solar gradually took over RPN’s programming, save for the network’s self-produced ‘Newswatch‘, and by 2010 virtually every program on RPN belonged to Solar Entertainment.

The end came near for RPN when Solar acquired 34% of its shares, after which most of the network’s employees were laid out in favor of Solar’s staff. As it turned out, RPN was absorbed under the Solar umbrella, and ‘Newswatch’ ended production by 2012.

The RPN-Solar block was initially called ‘Prime Shift’, before it transitioned to C/S and then C/S 9. All three iterations were catered to a more masculine audience, and normally featured crime, suspense and reality-based programs. In 2009 it adopted a new identity as Solar TV, adding entertainment and talent-based programs. Then in 2011 the Solar TV name was dropped in favor of ETC, and removed most male-based programs to cater to a more feminine audience.

While the Solar TV name was inactive, Solar executives continued to operate the network in absentia. Then in late 2011 Solar began integrating its own news operations into the fledgling Talk TV network, which eventually evolved into the Solar News Channel. By the middle of the year SNC’s flagship programs ‘Solar Network News‘ and ‘Solar Nightly News‘ were airing on channel 9 in between ETC’s programs, hinting at a possible transfer.

SNC’s move to channel 9 should benefit the said network. With a reputation for delivering straight news without the excesses of sensationalism, the professionally sound approach of SNC is a great alternative against the mainstream networks’ tabloid-based journalism. More importantly, the move to the VHF band will help improve SNC’s reach and clarity, in an effort to become more competitive.

In a few hours Solar News Channel will go on air in its new home. It may have been a daring move by the Solar management to finally go national after a few years of building its news department, but it should be all worth the wait.

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humor, news, Philippines, public affairs, television

The Tulfo Brothers and Pickup Lines

It has been months since the ‘Pick-Up Lines‘ segment on ‘Bubble Gang‘ ended upon Ogie Alcasid‘s defection to TV5, but its enduring popularity spread beyond the GMA gag show. In fact, even the Tulfo brothers of T3: Reload have ended most of their episodes with these pickup lines.

While the trio composed of Ben, Erwin and Raffy Tulfo were known for being serious and hard-hitting when it comes to solving all kinds of criminal mischief, on some occasions they can also showcase their softer and humorous side. Thus the cheesy lines concept came to my attention, in a sense that it normally ends T3: Reload on a more positive note.

The segment debuted last July, but with only Raffy and Ben hosting the said segments. In these segments they read the cheesy love lines made up by viewers off of T3: Reload’s Facebook account. As Erwin returned from vacation, these segments expanded to include pickup lines against criminals and political offenders. Here are some of the examples which you can access via the News5 website.

http://n5e.interaksyon.com/videos/5664048FF3734F6/cheesy-lines-ng-mga-netizen-para-sa-tulfo-brothers

http://n5e.interaksyon.com/videos/C393CFF98D9D47D/tol-raffy-erwin-at-ben-humirit-na-naman-ng-cheesy-lines

I wonder if the Tulfo brothers were to trade their suits in favor of baggie pants, baseball caps and oversized shirts while doing this segment. It would have made the segment even better. But even in their suits, and in Ben’s case shades, they can still elicit a laugh or two from the audience, in a way that it helps lower their stress levels at the end of T3: Reload.

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entertainment, game show, news, Philippines, television

Killer Karaoke Episode Abruptly Ended

TV5’s ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’ was about to air the final round of their second episode when it was abruptly cut off the air in favor of ‘Juan Direction’. And many viewers were shocked about the sudden change of programming.

At around 9:20 p.m., TV5 was on a commercial break when a plug of the succeeding episode of ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’ began to air. A few minutes later came the Parental Guidance advisory of the MTRCB, after which a new episode of ‘Juan Direction’ got underway. Following several complaints from netizens, host Michael V then tweeted that ‘technical difficulties’ caused the abrupt ending of ‘Killer Karaoke’, and then promised a re-airing of that episode in full.

The abrupt ending of ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’ was just one blunder in an otherwise productive day for the Kapatid network, which began with a live PBA game before wrapping it up with a new music-oriented program called ‘SpinNation’. While TV5 promised a re-air of ‘Killer Karaoke’, it was indeed a learning lesson for the operators on the nuances of running a television program.

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