Friday, April 28, 2006

I post here what I wrote on PCIJ's site- I double posted by mistake there...

To me this is much "bruhahah" over nothing; I know the men of the NBI STF and they are fair and professional, If Atty. Ed Arugay is still heading it; Probe will get a fair review. that said- all I can see here is a request letter for a copy of a tape of program which is subject to law- a requirement all Broadcasters have to comply with. It is something aired at sign on and sign off for all stations nationwide.

" A one-sentence letter was sent by NTC Regional Director for NCR Delilah Deles, on April 26, to ABS-CBN Network’s Vice President Manoli Manalastas. No explanation for the request is contained in the letter." - again per the Law- none is required!

It says - I read it posted on this website 'May we request a copy of the program aired...." Not the master tape- but a copy of the tape aired? you can challenge it court BUT; if it only wants copies of the"program aired" the broadcaster has to comply with a lawful order..

Now, Cong. Gilbert Remulla and another Congressman (sorry forgot his name) introduced a bill recently to amend laws governing broadcasters and freedoms of speech and press.

What every TV station manager or owner or news director and or producer learns "DAY ONE"... is Broadcasting has specific rules and conduct which makes this field of journalism subject to "Government review" and regulation that sets it apart from other Journalism.

I got that lecture from Che-Che's old profesor at UP; Miss. Lulu Ilustre a former KBP president who pounded it into us at the Palawan Broadcasting Corporation.

"Responcibility, you must be able to present a report that will be able to face all forms of scrutiny." In our case at that time we were the only station on the Island.

So you better believe we were made to make sure everything we reported was balanced, fair, and clearly capable of facing anything. I often joke with former students of Tita Lulu; you only had her as a instructor and profesor- to us- she was part Boss, Part Mom part judge jury and executioner! Boy this brings back memories...

On a global view of this - There is a common legal opinion, not only here in the Philippines, But in the USA, the EU, etc. "That as a private franchisee of a public resource- the airwaves- broadcasters are subject to strict regulation."

If you look at the KBP code and Broadcast franchise licence of a TV Station, it’s all there. .Most of those are copied from the FCC code in the USA; stations there go through this a lot - but- when raw production tapes are demanded. There in lies the difference.

Then there is no the "KBP code" which governs broadcasting here as specific rules on sensitive subject mater in newscasts.aired - that is another mater- but not a mater raised here or so it seems in this order.

So until broadcast laws are amended this "one sentence letter' or similar type of communication is all that is required, for "ANYTHING AIRED" Broadcasters; be they news or entertainment shows may be required to submit to until such a time laws are written or made as such to extend other protection provided for print media..

If it raw material- or video not aired being requested - Then A classic case a few years back in the UK where a series a IRA interviews were seized from a local BBC station under censorship & security rules. In that case commando team was sent in and nearly everything taken - and this is in the UK. Where specific laws exist for this.

Mind you- I have had my own experiences with "tapes taken" I don't ever want to go through again r- but as explained to me then - i was on "exclusion or private property" not a public place when that happened. Hence; I did have to allow my tapes to be taken, personal opinion aside of my views on that incident.

I do hope at some point; more laws will be passed to cover this kind type of case but until such. One can fight it out in the courts. Good luck! Oh, by the way... if anyone in guesthouse ever sees a beta cam tape... someone seized... years ago... uh... I had to pay for that out of salary… could I have it back now please?

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