ABS-CBN News apologizes to UPLB for inaccurate report
In response to an online clamor demanding an apology from the news network over inaccurate reporting, ABS-CBN News apologized to the students of the University of the Philippines-Los Baños, on Saturday, September 19.
The incident involved a news report that quoted UPLB students as chanting “Trapo (traditional politician)! Trapo!” at Vice President Jejomar Binay during a forum at the university on Tuesday, September 15.
The students, however, shouted “Sample! Sample!” They were teasing Binay, the guest at the UPLB “Forum on Governance, Transparency and Social Transformation" to show a sample of his dance moves when he appeared on stage.
At the time, some faculty members had just performed an intermission number.
At the UPLB event, students roasted Vice President Jejomar Binay in a no-holds barred forum, where they asked him about the informal settlers in Makati, corruption allegations against him, and his stand on agrarian reform, labor, political dynasties and human rights violations.
ABS-CBN News had reported that the crowd heckled the Vice President with the “trapo" chants. In a separate story, the news agency reported that the Vice President “felt disrespected” at the forum.
Later that day, the news network changed the title of their story to “VP Binay: I enjoyed UPLB forum.” (READ: Binay: I enjoyed UPLB forum, no offense taken)
The inaccurate reports prompted the UPLB University Student Council to post an open letter on its official Facebook account, directed to ABS-CBN News, within the first hour of Saturday.
“These acts of unethical journalism by ABS-CBN have inflicted a negative perception on UPLB students, with misinformed netizens and readers treating and tagging UPLB students as ‘unmannered,’ and of ‘low breeding,'" the UPLB USC said.
Following the online clamor using the hashtag ABSCBNsaysorrytoUPLB, which trended on Twitter on Saturday, ABS-CBN News issued the public apology on its official site.
"ABS-CBN News expresses its sincerest apologies to the students of UP Los Banos for the errors committed by ABS-CBNnews.com in 2 articles about the forum of UP Los Banos students with Vice President Jejomar Binay last September 15," it said.
“In our effort to provide a more comprehensive coverage of the forum, one of our writers mistook the word 'sample' for 'trapo.' We immediately corrected this right after we were alerted about the mistake on September 16, 2015,” it added.
It also gave its assurance that it will be "taking disciplinary steps against those responsible for the oversight."
Check out some of the tweets on the issue:
Shortly after the event, #BinayVisitsUPLB began trending on Twitter, followed by satirical tweets of Binay's statements with the hashtag BinayBwisitsUPLB. – with a report from Raisa Serafica/Rappler.com