More TV advocacy groups needed
ONE reason why local TV isn’t serving its viewers with good rather than commercial shows is the fact that it’s been taking us for granted.
It always swears that it loves us and is dedicated to the healthy viewing welfare of our families and impressionable children, but actual industry practice is focused more on profit than on service.
To lick this problem, we first have to admit that this is mostly our fault. We’ve been such a passive, all-accepting—and all-forgiving—audience that some TV people feel they can push us this way and that with impunity.
It’s time, therefore, for us to retroactively realize that local TV is the mess it is because we have been feckless in our response to it.
Let’s stop blaming others for the mess we’re in, and start accusing ourselves of not doing our rightful share to persuade our TV people to come up with programs that invigorate rather than demean our collective psyche.
First off, we should realize that our combined viewing numbers are the necessary lifeblood of TV shows. If not enough people watch a program, it gets cancelled—it’s as simple as that, because advertisers support shows that bring their commercial messages to the greatest number of viewers and potential buyers of their products and services.
Alas, most of the time, that “viewer power” factor has been activated the wrong way: It’s led to the cancellation of good shows, because not enough people are watching them!
Therefore, the more enlightened viewers among us should decide to patronize only good shows, and stop watching bad and potentially injurious programs.
Remember, the show you decide to watch is your vote for the TV programming you feel that you and your children want—and deserve.
It would also be good if enlightened viewers expressed their proactive involvement in the industry’s products by forming TV advocacy groups in different schools, offices and communities.
Some years ago, the CBCP asked us to conduct a workshop for the formation of such groups, and many interested and concerned viewers took the course. In it, we emphasized that, since viewers have a great stake in the negative repercussions of TV shows, they should make known their reactions to those shows by writing the channels involved, or by resorting to media exposure for their comments.
We also stressed that their reactions shouldn’t all be negative, that we should also go out of our way to praise good TV workers for their quality programs, because it’s difficult to come up with such shows on local TV.
The good news is that some of the TV advocacy groups formed during that workshop are still active. But, we need many more such groups for enlightened people’s views to make a real difference in the industry.
If you want to learn how to put up your own TV advocacy group, call 564-8370, and we’ll be happy to help.
P.S.: For proof positive that the Television Advocacy Group formed at the CBCP workshop is still active, here’s its latest reaction, sent to the producer of the extended teleserye, “Walang Hanggan”:
“The series’ plot revolves around a never-ending fight for wealth and power, each competing family employing all means, legit or not, to outdo each other. Lives are taken with no remorse, as if there were no such thing as conscience.
“While the show’s negative values are plentiful and magnified, it does also portray some positive values–but, it is packed with too much pride, hatred, deception, greed, power and ambition.
“Those involved in its production should care more about the messages they are sending. Because of their popular series’ wide influence, they should help shape and mold the minds and hearts of their show’s many viewers.”
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.