ABS-CBN apologizes to UPLB over coverage of Binay’s campus visit

Jejomar Binay UP Los Banos
Vice President Jejomar Binay visited UP Los Banos last September 15 (Photo credits: Twitter page of UPLB Perspective)

The University of the Philippines Los Baños Student Council (UPLB USC) blasted media giant ABS-CBN for errors in their reportage of Vice President Jejomar Binay’s visit to the campus last September 15. The student body promoted the hashtag #ABSCBNSaySorryToUPLB to support its cause, and as of September 19, it is one of the top trending topics on microblogging site Twitter.

In particular, the UPLB USC took issue with ABS-CBN’s report that students repeatedly shouted the word “trapo” to Binay just before he began his talk. The network uploaded a video of the incident on their official Facebook page with the caption: “LISTEN: UPLB students shout ‘trapo’ as Vice President Binay starts his forum yesterday. And the vice president’s reaction? Watch.”

Jejomar Binay UP Los Banos
Vice President Jejomar Binay visited UP Los Banos last September 15
(Photo credits: Twitter page of UPLB Perspective)

The statement, signed by UPLB USC Chair Ronald Gem A. Celestial and Information and Publicity Committee Head Gabriel Jeremiah T. Guevarra, pointed out that ABS-CBN repeated the same claim in an article on their website originally titled “VP Binay felt disrespected at UPLB forum” and was later revised to “VP Binay: I enjoyed UPLB forum.”

The student body pointed out that contrary to what ABS-CBN reported, UPLB students were in fact chanting “Sample!” before Binay started his speech. “There was an intermission number by some faculty members from the Department of Social Studies before VP Binay’s speech, thus the chanting,” the UPLB USC explained.

“It is odd to know that of all the news agencies that covered the forum, only ABS-CBN published articles accusing UPLB students of the alleged chanting,” they added.

“Even though these articles have already been ‘updated,’ it does not deny the fact that ABS-CBN committed acts that are damaging for the students of the UP Los Baños,” the student body said, noting that because of the network’s erroneous reportage, some netizens have went on to describe UPLB students as ‘ill-mannered’ among other negative things.

This afternoon, ABS-CBN has already obliged to the UPLB USC’s demand for an apology. In a statement published on its website, the network admitted that one of their writers mistook the word “sample” for “trapo.”

“We will be taking disciplinary steps against those responsible for this oversight,” the network said, stressing that the necessary corrections had been made as soon as they’ve been made aware of the error.

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About Mark Madrona 1191 Articles
Mark Madrona is a prize-winning blogger, online journalist, and educator from the Philippines. Previously a book editor, he is now teaching communication subjects for two public universities in Manila. His blog The Filipino Scribe won 3rd place in a blog competition organized by the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability in East Asia and the Pacific (ANSA-EAP). In 2015, it was one of the finalists in the 2015 Lasallian Scholarum Awards for Best Online Feature Article in Youth and Education. He also won the Best Blog Award during the 2011 Population and Development Media Awards, the youngest recipient of that recognition. Know more about him here: http://www.filipinoscribe.com/about/.

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