I am always reminded after a Pacquiao fight on GMA how passive Filipinos are. How subservient they are to those who hold themselves up as betters.
The factual representation of their impotence is measured in advertising minutes per hour, where GMA bludgeons its captive audience with 45 minutes of advertising supporting 15 minutes of boxing.
You will recall when the television networks were held to task several months ago for inciting the bloody bus massacre in Manila? Congress dragged network executives front and center. The executives bowed to the authority of Congress and their demands for a higher standard of ethics. And the execs claimed they could be trusted to do better in the future by self-policing. No new regulations were warranted.
And no new regulations were passed.,
Well, GMA and ABS-CBN, which hold prized, powerful and profitable national television networks, do not believe they have to be respectful of the interest of the Philippine people. In other words, the networks have the power and they don't mind using it for self enrichment. The public be damned.
This is an example of power as a social mechanism in the Philippines. Power defines most interpersonal relationships as people are quick to read who is on top and who is subservient. In this instance, there is no Golden Rule, no sense of caretaking of the public interest by television networks, and no regulatory agency to hold them accountable to standards that are anywhere close to being respectful of the viewing public.
45 minutes of advertising. 15 minutes of show. Record it, 11/13/2011, Pacquiao vs Marquez.
Why do the stations feel no compunction to treat their valued franchises as a utility, a precious resource of the People? Because the People are uneducated and passive and have no advocate to speak on their behalf. And they can't "vote with the dial" by switching stations because there are no meaningful alternatives to the "Big Two".
Normally, Congress would advocate for their constituents. But congressmen rely upon money from the television networks and executives for their continued political success.
This is one of those cases where the Philippines is stuck in the 1960's, with no public comprehension that broadcast channels are limited, they are valuable, and they are a public resource. Not a private jewel bestowed upon the chosen few.
The US regulates television through a Federal Communications Commission. The networks must limit the number of minutes of advertising on children's shows to no more than 12 per hour. There are no such restrictions on adult material, but in the US, most people have access to more than two primary channels. And licensing requirements for stations ensure a review of their practices regularly by the FCC. The FCC watches with a sharp eye, one that defends public interest. Advertising does not overrun programming.
The raw truth of the matter is that the Philippines has no advocate defending the rights of Filipinos to fair treatment. Congress can't do it. They are compromised by campaign cash.
Because congressmen are in the pockets of the abusers, there were no new regulations after the bus massacre. The hearings ended up being a big show by congressional leaders who can recognize when the public is venting and will do what is necessary to help the public let off steam. So that they can keep things as they are.
You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. The Philippine National Motto.
Status quo. The national condition.
The People are left out. Hung out to dry by a callous business ethic and a greedy congressional ethic.
And there will be no one defending the people, ever, unless they gather together as a force, and speak as one loud voice . . . as has the US Tea Party.
What should the name of the Philippine public advocacy group be?
"We the People"
Who should lead the initiative?
You tell me.
Filipinos will do this when they are absolutely sick of being kicked around, used, abused and made impotent by the big dicks behind the scenes of Philippine governance.
Like, when the nation as a whole grows a pair.