Wowowee has millions and millions of fans all over the world and the question now is whether a petition to oust Willie Revillame will be enough to get ABS-CBN to either reprimand or fire the show's host.
So far, the online petition put up by written by Roel C. Saguisag demanding the ouster of Wowowee host Willie Revillame has gathered 11,462 total signatures.
Doing some rough math, I'd say the numbers are going in Willie's favor.
Better Philippines will probably crack my nuts for crowing about this, but this blog was one of many blogs shown on tonight's early evening newscast of ABS-CBN. The reason why I mention this is because I think the blogosphere is a significant factor in getting even media giants like ABS-CBN to listen to a small number of its viewers who do not like what they see on their channel.
You see, if I were to write ABS-CBN and complain about one of their shows, the letter may be just read once and filed away -- in a trash can. But blog entries or blog posts are seen, not only by Filipino internet users, but by almost everybody with an internet connection around the world. Moreover, decision makers are most likely to make decisions not just based on what they read or watch in the news, but also on information presented in blogs -- because, after all, some blogs really do put out honest opinions that may be helpful to others.
I have to confess, I only watch the news programs of ABS-CBN. It's actually my kid's yaya and our cook-cum-cleaning lady that keeps ABS-CBN in business.
I only get to watch Wowowee when I do my writing assignments at home and I usually just tune out the racket that goes on in the show. When I do glimpse at the TV set while Wowowee is on, I usually catch Willie Revillame egging on contestants while his dancers rhytmically thrust their hips to the beat of whatever song is playing.
I can't say that I don't enjoy watching these women make overtly sexual movements on air. I went through a time (when I was younger and unmarried) when I'd spent half my month's salary just to watch such shows late at night over several rounds of beer. I am wired to respond to such visual cues and it really takes some effort to wean my eyes away such sights.
But I do -- somehow -- find the strength to turn my eyes away from the TV set and get back to writing whatever I was writing, if I can remember where my last train of thought was heading.
Right now, I am not too worried that my son will be affected by the sight of women gyrating their hips. Perhaps the sight of women shaking their boobies might get his attention, but that may be just because he wants milk. But perhaps, when he is old enough to make sense of things, I don't want him to get the idea that ALL women are supposed to behave the way they do on Willie Revillame's show.
Going back to my blog.
What really inspires me to write is the number of reactions I elicit from my readers. And the blog entries on Wowowee and Willie Revillame have either piqued the interests of a number of people so much that they can't help but leave their comment.
So far, a lot of people have commented on this blog. There are those who say that Willie was right in asking his station's traffic controller to stop showing live coverage video of Cory Aquino's funeral as a video insert on his how.
To be fair, Willie did ask the traffic controllers with polite words to stop airing the video of Cory Aquino's funeral. But, of course, the tone of his voice suggested that he was obviously upset or angry or annoyed.
I am of the opinion that Willie should have done so while his show was on commercial break. What Willie did, however, was to berate (however politely) his station's traffic controller on air, for everyone to see.
What Willie didn't realize was that as he was berating his station's traffic controller, people were seeing and hearing his tantrum inside the Manila Cathedral where the ABS-CBN's live coverage of the Cory Aquino funeral procession from Greenhills to Intramuros was being shown on a widescreen.
You can just imagine the number of relatives and supporters of Cory Aquino were offended by Willie's tactless and uncouth behaviour on air. You can just imagine how much it insulted an already grieving mass of people inside Manila Cathedral.
I am old enough to know that there was a time when proper ettiquette was required of TV anchors or TV hosts. I also remember a time when noon time TV was a good time to show people with real talent for singing, dancing, or whatever else. There was even a time when the contests included quizzes where people could really show how much they knew about many things, these highlighted the mental acuity (smartness) of our people.
I don't know if they still teach it in college, but I was told by a college professor that when one is hosting a TV show, you must consider that you are bringing yourself into their homes. So, like a good guest in the homes of millions of people, you should show exemplary behaviour.
I don't know exactly when it became acceptable for most Filipinos to eat their lunch in their homes or their offices with their TV sets on and tuned into a show that basically shows the following:
- Women gyrating their pelvises and making overt sexual gestures masked as a dance number of sorts.
- Old men and women being asked to gyrate their hips or act in a foolish manner.
- People being made to tell their sob stories to a room full of strangers in the hopes of being given a chance to win money.
- People being made to cavort and virtually make fools of themselves just to get a chance of winning money.
- People being given money for nothing.
- People being ASKED money for nothing.
Does this show Filipinos as being dignified? Worthy of respect?
If you are wondering if this and other shows similar to Willie Revillame's shows and the many other things other Filipinos did has any effect on our image around the world, just remember the following.
- Chip Tsao called us a nation of servants.
- Terry Hatcher's show put down our doctors
- BBC's Paul and Harry showed a Filipina maid dancing sexily for her British boss
- The Philippines was branded as most corrupt
I don't believe in censorship, but I do believe that we ought to conform to some standard of decency... And if you have to ask me what that is, then all may already be lost.