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BrandingKapamilya Forever (main branding)[note 1]
Kapamilya Network (former branding as a free-to-air television network)
AvailabilityNationwide (main transmitter inactive; currently broadcast through pay television via Kapamilya Channel and blocktime via ZOE's A2Z and MediaQuest's TV5)
Worldwide (via The Filipino Channel and through online streaming via Kapamilya Online Live and iWantTFC)
FoundedOctober 23, 1953; 68 years ago (1953-10-23)
by James Lindenberg,
Antonio Quirino,
Eugenio Lopez, Sr.,
and Fernando Lopez
MottoIn The Service of the Filipino
Andito Kami Para Sa 'Yo
TV stationsList of TV stations
37.58% (Nielsen National Urban TAM January–August 2016)[1]
HeadquartersELJ Communications Center and ABS-CBN Broadcasting Center, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
OwnerABS-CBN Corporation
Key people
Launch date
October 23, 1953; 68 years ago (1953-10-23)
September 14, 1986; 35 years ago (1986-09-14)
(post-People Power Revolution)
September 23, 1972; 49 years ago (1972-09-23)
(martial law)
May 5, 2020; 2 years ago (2020-05-05)
(legislative franchise lapsed)
Former names
Alto Broadcasting System (ABS)
Chronicle Broadcasting Network (CBN)
Picture format
1080i (HDTV)
(downscaled to letterboxed 480i for the SDTV feed)
Sister network
International channel
The Filipino Channel
A2Z (October 10, 2020; 21 months ago (2020-10-10))[3]
TV5 (January 24, 2021; 18 months ago (2021-01-24))[4][5]
Official website
LanguageFilipino (main)
English (secondary)
ReplacedBBC-2 (1973–1986)
Replaced by

ABS-CBN (an initialism of its two predecessors' names, Alto Broadcasting System and Chronicle Broadcasting Network) is a Philippine commercial broadcast network (composed of television through free-to-air terrestrial, cable or satellite, radio and new media through streaming media, internet or online) and syndication, program distributor, and production company (operating primarily under the name ABS-CBN Entertainment) that serves as the flagship property of ABS-CBN Corporation, a company under the Lopez Group. The network is headquartered at the ELJ Communications Center and ABS-CBN Broadcasting Center in Quezon City, with additional offices and production facilities in 25 major cities including Baguio, Naga, Bacolod, Iloilo, Cebu, and Davao. ABS-CBN's production and post-production facility is located at the Horizon IT Park in San Jose del Monte, Bulacan which opened in 2018.[6][7][8][9] ABS-CBN was colloquially referred to as the Kapamilya Network;[note 1] the branding was originally introduced in 1999 and was officially introduced in 2003 during the celebration of its 50th anniversary and was used until its May 5, 2020 shutdown when ABS-CBN's branding changed to Kapamilya Forever in support for the network's franchise renewal on May 13, 2020.[10] ABS-CBN is the largest media company in the country in terms of assets, manpower, and international coverage.[11] As of 2020, the network's terrestrial broadcasting operations including free-to-air television and radio is indefinitely suspended due to lack of license and franchise, but broadcasting activities continued via online, cable and satellite, streaming platforms, and block timing on terrestrial television through A2Z and TV5.

ABS-CBN is the first and oldest television broadcaster in Southeast Asia and one of the oldest commercial television broadcasters in Asia. It has also been the leading television network in the Philippines with advertising revenues of 21.2 billion pesos for the fiscal year of 2015.[12][13][14][15][16] ABS-CBN's very first-ever television broadcast was on October 23, 1953, as Alto Broadcasting System (ABS) on DZAQ-TV, just 3 months after the first broadcast of Japan's NHK General TV and Nippon Television. It is also the first television network in Southeast Asia to broadcast in color, the first television network in the Philippines to formally launch a digital terrestrial television service, and the first broadcast television network in the Philippines to formally launch in HD.[17]

The flagship television station of ABS-CBN was DWWX-TV (ABS-CBN TV-2 Manila). As such, the network was informally referred to as "Channel 2" or "dos" (Spanish for "two") even if the network was seen in other channel numbers elsewhere in the country. The network operated across the Philippine archipelago through the ABS-CBN Regional division which controlled 80 television stations.[12][18] Its programs are also available outside the Philippines through the global subscription television channel The Filipino Channel (TFC) which is available in over three million paying households worldwide as well as terrestrially in Guam through KEQI-LD. From 2011 to 2020, the network had been on test broadcast for digital terrestrial television using the Japanese standard ISDB-T in select areas in the Philippines. It also partnered with KANTAR Media Inc. the ratings provider of ABS-CBN and other media entity. On October 3, 2015, ABS-CBN started to broadcast in high-definition through its affiliate direct-to-home cable and satellite television providers.[17]

ABS-CBN was issued a cease-and-desist order by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) and Solicitor General Jose Calida on May 5, 2020, after the NTC refused to renew the network's franchise license earlier in February 2020. The franchise license expired on May 4, 2020, and a day later, ABS-CBN signed off in the evening.[19][20][21] Kapamilya Channel was then set up as a replacement for its main terrestrial channel which can only be viewed via cable, satellite and online. A web-based channel Kapamilya Online Live was also set up to exclusively livestream some of its contents to online video-sharing platforms Facebook and YouTube.

On October 10, 2020, A2Z Channel 11 was launched as the network's temporary terrestrial channel space through a blocktime agreement between ABS-CBN Corporation and ZOE Broadcasting Network, while some of the network's programs are being shown on TV5 since January 24, 2021.

While their internet presence was increased amid the shutdown of its main terrestrial network, the ABS-CBN Entertainment's social media accounts is mainly managed by the ABS-CBN Digital Media,[22] with an estimated to less than 100 million followers and subscribers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube (though partnership on ABS-CBN Made for YOUtube and YouTube Super Stream Philippines), Kumu (through partnership on Pinoy Big Brother live streaming and other online shows), and TikTok.[23] These includes social media accounts of its divisions (including ABS-CBN News, ABS-CBN Star Cinema, ABS-CBN Sports and ABS-CBN Star Music) and programs (including The Voice Philippines, I Can See Your Voice Philippines, Pilipinas Got Talent, Idol Philippines, Pinoy Big Brother, Your Face Sounds Familiar Philippines, Pinoy Boyband Superstar, Your Moment and World of Dance Philippines) with the main account of ABS-CBN across social media has more than 70 million followers whereas over 21 million likes and 31 million followers on Facebook, 1.6 million followers on Twitter, and with over 2.6 million followers on Instagram. As of June 30, 2021, the ABS-CBN Entertainment YouTube channel was the most-subscribed and most-viewed channel in Southeast Asia, with over 36.7 million subscribers and over 44.1 billion views on YouTube, surpassing Thailand's WorkpointTV.[24][25][23]

ABS-CBN Entertainment mainly focuses on being a content company, which includes producing television programs, films and other entertainment content and distributions. Since then, the company focuses on their own subsidiaries and divisions to produce and distribute shows and collaborating on partnerships with independent production companies and distributors to distribute their own contents.[23][26]


See also: History of ABS-CBN

Bolinao Electronics Corporation (BEC) was founded on June 13, 1946. BEC was established by James Lindenberg, one of the founding fathers of Philippine television,[27] an American electronics engineer who went into radio equipment assembly and radio broadcasting. At that time, the largest media company was Manila Broadcasting Company (MBC), with DZRH as the leading radio station. In 1949, James Lindenberg shifted Bolinao to radio broadcasting with DZBC and masterminded the introduction of television to the country in 1953.[28]

In 1951, Lindenberg partnered with Antonio Quirino, brother of then-Philippine President Elpidio Quirino, in order to try their hand at television broadcasting. In 1952, BEC was renamed as Alto Broadcasting System or ABS (with Alto Sales Corporation as its corporate name). "Alto" was a contraction of Quirino's and his wife's first names, Tony and Aleli. Though they had little money and resources, ABS was able to put up its TV tower by July 1953 and import some 300 television sets. The initial test broadcasts began in September of the same year. The very first full-blown broadcast was on October 23, 1953, of a party in Tony Quirino's humble abode. The television station was known as DZAQ-TV.[28] The first program to air was a garden party at the Quirino residence in Sitio Alto, San Juan. After the premiere telecast, the station followed a four-hour-a-day schedule, from six to ten in the evening.[28]


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The logo of Alto Broadcasting System (1953–1967).
The logo of Alto Broadcasting System (1953–1967).
The logo of Chronicle Broadcasting Network (1956–1967).
The logo of Chronicle Broadcasting Network (1956–1967).

The ABS-CBN logo features three main elements, the vertical line rooted in a horizontal origin, the three extending circles, and the text ABS-CBN. The vertical line or bar represents a tower (broadcasting tower) as well as dignifying the company and representing its core business of broadcasting, with the circles symbolizing a transmitter tower's signals, and representing the red, green and blue or RGB colors which makes up a pixel shown on the television. The 3 island groups of the Philippines, Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, are also denoted by the three circles, as well as its wide presence, "range for imagination", and its "pioneering, embracing" spirit.

One unique thing about ABS-CBN's logo is that it also has a horizontal version, usually used to save space as the main vertical logo usually takes up more space than the horizontal one. The design of the horizontal version of the logo contains the ABS-CBN text, split into two parts, "ABS" and "CBN", without the dash connecting them, and ABS-CBN's iconic symbol squeezed in between them.

The first logo to have a horizontal version going by this design was the logo launched in 1986, the year they re-launched their operations after 14 years of hibernation under martial law and Marcos' authoritarian rule. From 1986 up until 2014, the elements of the horizontal logo, text, and symbol were evenly sized. In the 2014 version of the horizontal logo, the symbol of ABS-CBN was squeezed in between was slightly larger than the ABS (Alto Broadcasting System) and CBN (Chronicle Broadcasting Network) names.

Channel 2

Channel 2 was used as the frequency of the flagship station of ABS-CBN in Metro Manila from November 14, 1969, to September 23, 1972, and from September 14, 1986, to May 5, 2020. The network started using a channel logo with the "2" logo for use as a promotion from 1969 to 1972 with the slogan "The Family Channel".

After the closure of ABS-CBN due to the declaration of martial law, the DZAQ call sign and the channel 2 frequency were awarded to BBC as DWWX-TV from 1973 to 1986.

After the revival of ABS-CBN in 1986, the channel "2" logo is introduced into ABS-CBN in March. The features of the "2" logo rendered in Broadway typeface was a wing-shaped blue crest with a white curve at the top and a white line at the tail. This logo was used from 1986 to 1987 and had the slogan "Watch Us Do It Again!".

In March 1987, the first tri-ribbon "2" logo was laced with a rhomboidal star. It carried the slogan "The Star Network" when it aired as a station ID to reclaim its dominance in TV ratings. It was created using the Scanimate system the network took over from BBC-2. By 1988, the tri-ribbon was changed to red, green and blue stripes from the three white stripes it first used. The tri-ribbon logo showed a shooting star in the form of the number "2" in the idents which came out. Similarly, most numerical channel logos within this slogan have a star and versions came into regional TV channels - DYCB-TV 3 in Cebu, D-3-ZO-TV in Baguio, DYXL-TV 4 in Bacolod, DXAS-TV 4 in Davao and other regional stations. The tri-ribbon 2 was also used on microphone flags until the early 2000s.


The Sarimanok, a legendary bird in Philippine folklore, was first used in 1966 to identify color broadcasts, somewhat similar to how the NBC peacock has been utilized. In 1993, which happens to be the Chinese Year of the Rooster, ABS-CBN relaunched the Sarimanok with a new station ID featuring the legendary bird. The Sarimanok ID became utmostly associated with the channel that ABS-CBN opted it to become the station's mascot. ABS-CBN later named its new 24-hour news channel the Sarimanok News Network, the precursor of the ABS-CBN News Channel. It was revived again in 2004 to promote regional broadcasts nationwide. The Sarimanok has appeared in the ABS-CBN's 2013 summer station ID as the artwork.

Evolution of ABS-CBN logos

The logo of the pre-merger Alto Broadcasting System (ABS) had a symbol composed of a transmitter with a circle denoting its signals, a precursor of sorts to ABS-CBN's current logos. The logo of the pre-merger Chronicle Broadcasting Network (CBN), on the other hand, had three blocks and the CBN letters in them. In 1961, the ABS-CBN brand was introduced and its first logo had a big letter B, unifying the names ABS and CBN, in a box placed between their channel numbers 3 (ABS' DZAQ-TV) and 9 (CBN's DZXL-TV).

A modified version of ABS symbol was launched in 1963, consisting of a triangle denoting a transmitter tower and four circles denoting the broadcast signal (similar to the 1953 ABS logo), enclosed in a rounded box and with the ABS-CBN text above, in a form that would evolve over the years to the present-day logo.

The logo soon after took on its current iteration: a vertical line, denoting a transmitter tower, with three concentric circles signifying Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, enclosed in a square frame, in 1967. The new logo became identical and inspired by the logo of the former German broadcaster and ARD member Sender Freies Berlin (SFB) based in Berlin. The logo also resembles a lollipop, spinning top toy (trumpo in Filipino), and logos of American recording companies Columbia Records and CBS Records International (although Columbia Records and CBS Records International has a vertical line underneath the circles instead of within the circles and also have a left-slant line and a black circle at the middle). At that time, it was rendered in black and white because color TV (despite the fact that it was ABS-CBN that introduced it the previous year) wasn't common yet and the logo style at that time separated ABS and CBN's names, putting ABS' name on top and CBN's on the bottom.

The network used a colored variation of the 1967 logo when color television was introduced and they re-launched operations in 1986, after 14 years of forced closure under martial law. The logo had the three rings detached from the transmitter and colored the three rings in red, green, and blue, and substituted the square frame with an outlined black box. The RGB-colored logo has remained relatively unchanged since then, though two modifications in 1993 (network's 40th anniversary) and 1996 (ABS-CBN Corporation's 50th anniversary) saw minor tweaks in the letters, the rings and the box. This is the longest logo to be used by the network after People Power Revolution alongside the 2000 logo, have used for 14 years from 1986 to 2000.

On January 1, 2000 (the first day of the new millennium), the ABS and CBN acronym again merged after 33 years but the ABS-CBN text is located below the symbol instead of the above like the 1963 logo and the hyphen is used between acronyms instead of a dot. The outlined black box that enclosed the three rings and the vertical line (that maintained their 1996 design) was replaced by a grey square (a crystal plane when rendered in 3D). The ABS-CBN text now adapts the Rotis Semi Serif typeface. Like with the 1986 logo, this is the longest logo to be used after the People Power Revolution which was also used for 14 years from 2000 to 2014.

The minimally altered version of the 2000 logo was introduced on October 7, 2013, as the secondary logo and officially became the network's primary logo on January 1, 2014, as part of its 60th anniversary and preparation for digital television broadcasts, and aiming to maintain the iconic structure of ABS-CBN's logo while at the same time giving it a new look suited for a period of popularity for social and digital media. This greatly modifies the "ABS-CBN" text, now using the modified version of Rotis Semi Serif typeface which dropped the once-standard serifs on the letters, giving the three RGB rings thicker width and perfected concentricity, and adopting a white square instead of a grey one from the previous 2000 logo. The only remaining aspect from the 2000 logo to be used on the 2014 logo is the letter "S" and hyphen, with the "S" still using the 2000 typeface.

ABS-CBN Regional

Main article: List of ABS-CBN Corporation channels and stations

ABS-CBN Regional (formerly Regional Network Group) served as the regional network division of ABS-CBN. It was responsible for simultaneously airing most of the shows seen on ABS-CBN's flagship station in the provinces, all stations (Cebu, Bacolod and Davao) were reopened 16 years ago in 1988 after the network's hibernation due to Martial law in September 1972 aside from Manila's flagship station, which reopened after the People Power Revolution in September 1986. ABS-CBN Regional had several stations in each region outside Mega Manila to ensure nationwide coverage. The local stations also produced their own newscasts which air prior to TV Patrol and another local programming which air on Sundays. The launch of the local game show Kapamilya Winner Ka! (now renamed as Kapamilya, Mas Winner Ka!) in the Visayas and Mindanao, Bagong Morning Kapamilya in North Luzon (Baguio and Dagupan), the 17th local TV Patrol in Southern Tagalog (Region IV-A), and the 18th local TV Patrol in Palawan (IV-B; the network had an affiliate station), provided more relevance to regional audiences.[29] On April 15, 2011, RNG launched ChoosePhilippines, a new website aimed to promote tourism in the Philippines by sharing photos and stories of the most extravagant places, culture, and arts of the Philippine island.[30]

ABS-CBN Regional ceased its operations with 12 TV Patrol's regional newscasts and 10 morning shows ended their broadcast on August 28, 2020, after almost 32 years following the denial of its legislative franchise on July 10.[31][32][33] It was replaced by Regional News Group in September 2020.


Main articles: List of programs broadcast by ABS-CBN and List of programs distributed by ABS-CBN

The majority of the programs shown on the network are created by ABS-CBN Corporation's Entertainment division. ABS-CBN Entertainment is responsible for original programs ranging from musical and variety shows, showbiz, lifestyle, comedy talk shows, comedy, gag shows, and sitcoms. It also distributes shows from other ABS-CBN drama and television production units. Original and adapted telenovelas and drama anthologies are produced by Dreamscape Entertainment, Star Creatives Television and other production drama units created by ABS-CBN, while news, public service, and documentary programs are produced by ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs and by other independent production outfits. ABS-CBN also acquires and syndicates program formats from abroad and in the Philippines to serve as a replacement on its free-to-air television channels, such as TV5 and A2Z Channel 11. ABS-CBN currently distributes and syndicates their entertainment and news programs on various networks, free-to-air and cable channels, websites and steaming platforms, and live stream through various social media such as A2Z, ANC, Cinema One, Cine Mo!, iQIYI, iWantTFC, Jeepney TV, Kapamilya Channel, Kapamilya Online Live, KTX, Kumu, Metro Channel, Myx, TeleRadyo, TV5, The Filipino Channel, WeTV iflix, Viu, YouTube, Netflix and others, while there main terrestrial ABS-CBN network is currently unavailable due to the network's franchise controversy. ABS-CBN also airs and syndicates regional programs, TV specials, and sporting and awarding events.


In 1992, AGB Nielsen Philippines was founded and a new pace in television history was introduced. In 2007, TNS Philippines started to offer media research through Kantar Media Philippines (formerly Kantar/TNS). In 2008, AGB Nielsen Philippines released the all-time highest rating shows in the Philippines, with 7 of the top 10 highest rating shows all from ABS-CBN with the shows like The Battle: Pacquiao vs. Morales, Rosalinda, Esperanza, Meteor Garden, Pangako Sa 'Yo, Miss Universe 1994, and Maria Mercedes.[34]

Controversies and scandals

Throughout the years, ABS-CBN has been involved in several controversies and scandals involving its talents, employees, and programs.

2004 copyright infringement with GMA

On July 22, 2004, during the arrival of Angelo de la Cruz at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) (a truck driver who was held hostage and threatened with beheading in Iraq abducted by armed rebels west of Baghdad while trucking fuel from Saudi Arabia), live breaking news coverage was aired on GMA Network and other television stations in the Philippines. GMA Network used audio-video coverage from Reuters, which GMA Network subscribed to.[35] During the said broadcast, a live feed from Reuters was simultaneously aired with its own live broadcast. During the first five-second of the live feed, GMA Network did notice that the live feed from Reuters was also airing at another local station, its main competitor ABS-CBN. The live video was restricted only to ABS-CBN and Reuters did not inform GMA Network that the video coverage was only intended for ABS-CBN. The local Court of Appeals junked the case filed by ABS-CBN Corporation against GMA Network Inc. for what was claimed to be illegal copying of its live video footage. In a ruling, the local fourth division of the appellate court set aside the resolution of the local Justice Department, which approved the filing of the violation of Republic Act 8293 (or the Intellectual Property Code) against GMA Network. It ruled out that the act of GMA Network airing the live video coverage was focused on good faith since there was no meaning to instigate damage to ABS-CBN Corporation.[36] The local court also said GMA Network acted in good faith when it decided to instantaneously stop using the live video feed from Reuters upon learning ABS-CBN was also covering the said news event and its following exertion to authenticate the ABS-CBN Corporation restriction arrangement with the news service, Reuters. The local court also stressed that apart from the lack of intent of GMA Network to affect the video from ABS-CBN, the action also cannot be reflected intrusion of Sections 212.4 and 185.1 of Republic Act 8293 since it was just a short excerpt compared with the totality of the matter.[37]

Wowowee scandals and incidents

Further information: Hello Pappy scandal and PhilSports Stadium stampede

Two major incidents involving ABS-CBN have involved the network's variety show Wowowee. The first incident was a demand for tickets to a one-year anniversary episode of the show at the PhilSports Arena in 2006 caused a deadly stampede killing 76 people.[38] Over a year later in August 2007, the show became entrenched in another scandal involving the possibility of a new game on the show being rigged as evident by a "mechanical glitch" which occurred during an episode,[39] which grew greater after Eat Bulaga! host Joey de Leon and Wowowee host Willie Revillame started exchanging attacks on-air against each other during their respective and competing shows.[40] The incident later led to a probe by the Department of Trade and Industry led by senator Mar Roxas (which was jokingly suggested by Joey during a speech he made on Eat Bulaga! in reference to the Hello Garci scandal, dubbing it "Hello Pappy").[41]

AGB Nielsen TV ratings scandal

Main article: AGB Nielsen Philippine TV ratings controversy

In late 2007, ABS-CBN and GMA Network accused AGB Nielsen Philippines of tampering with the ratings during their 2007 ratings surveys.[42][43] On January 8, 2008, Quezon City regional trial court (RTC) junked ABS-CBN's case against AGB Nielsen, saying it was prematurely filed.

Writ of Amparo

On January 22, 2008, Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) supported the petition for writ of amparo filed by the ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation's 11 employees (led by Ces Oreña-Drilon) with the Supreme Court to rule on the legality of journalists' arrests concerning the failed Manila Peninsula rebellion. It stated: "We support employees from ABS-CBN in standing up for their democratic rights to work free from harassment and intimidation, especially from government officials and authorities." The Supreme Court required the respondents to file comments to the Amparo petition within 10 days. Harry Roque, National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP)'s lawyer, announced its filing of a class lawsuit for injunction with damages (Article 33, New Civil Code of the Philippines) against the Philippine National Police, among others.

ABS-CBN vs. Willing Willie copyright case

ABS-CBN demanded ₱127 million from their former reality show star, Willie Revillame, citing copyright infringement due to stark similarities in Revillame's show, Willing Willie on TV5, and ABS-CBN's Wowowee.[44] ABS-CBN listed 5 acts of plagiarism allegedly committed by Willing Willie in their complaint as follows:[44]

  1. Willing Willie's opening song and dance number was similar to that of Wowowee's[44]
  2. "BIGA-Ten" and "Big Time Ka," both segments from the shows involved, bear similar names.[44]
  3. "Willie of Fortune" and "Willtime Bigtime" are segments from both shows which resemble each other.[44] ABS-CBN claimed that Willtime Bigtime resembled its show as it also showcases contestants relaying their personal stories before proceeding to play a singing/trivia game.[44]
  4. April "Congratulations" Gustilo was one of several backup dancers from Wowowee who also appear in Willing Willie.[44]
  5. Other striking similarities ABS-CBN claimed are found in Willing Willie's set design, stage, studio viewers' seats lay-out, lighting angles and camera angles.[44]

A 25-page ruling later on dated May 22, 2015 junked the case against Revillame, declaring it moot.[44] After the Quezon City RTC demanded a ₱400 million bond from Revillame to answer any further damage the network might sustain, it was later discharged.[44] Revillame signed a contract with GMA network two days prior to the ruling, to work on a new show entitled, Wowowin.[44]

2020 franchise renewal controversy

Main article: ABS-CBN franchise renewal controversy

Since April 2017, ABS-CBN came under fire by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte due to the network refusing to air his 2016 presidential campaign ads in favor of a smear ad paid for by-then vice presidential candidate Antonio Trillanes.[45][46] However, according to the country's Commission on Elections spokesperson James Jimenez, the controversial ad was well within Election Law, under "Partisan Political Activity"[47][48] Duterte publicly stated that he will oppose the 25-year franchise renewal of ABS-CBN; former Laguna governor E.R. Ejercito wholeheartedly supported Duterte's plan.[49][50] Opposition lawmakers as well as labor groups objected to Duterte's stand on ABS-CBN as the franchise non-renewal will compromise the employees of the network; stating that the blocking of the franchise renewal had no merit. Opposition groups also claimed that the non-renewal of the franchise violates press freedom.[51]

Under Philippine law, broadcasting networks require a congressional franchise (Republic Act) to operate television and radio stations for 25 years; the absence of one will lead to the suspension of such operations. ABS-CBN's legislative franchise, which was approved by the virtue of Republic Act No. 7966 (granted last March 30, 1995), was set to expire on May 4, 2020, because the franchise will become effective fifteen days after its publication on the Official Gazette on April 19, 1995.[52] At least 12 lawmakers have filed their own versions for a new franchise of the network. House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano has made the assurance that Congress will tackle the franchise with fairness.[53]

On February 24, 2020, the CEO of the network apologized to President Rodrigo Duterte for not airing his political advertisements during his 2016 polls, which Duterte accepted,[45] and the Congress finally made its decision to tackle their franchise renewal.[54]

During a Senate Hearing on the same day, public services panel chair Grace Poe stated they were to tackle ABS-CBN's compliance with the terms and conditions of its franchise. The conclusion was that there was no breach of laws or franchise terms.[55]

On May 5, 2020, the National Telecommunications Commission issued a cease and desist order to stop the network's broadcast, including its radio stations DZMM and MOR, following the expiration of its broadcast franchise the day before.[56][57] The cease and desist order covers 42 television stations operated by ABS-CBN across the country, including Channel 2, 10 digital broadcast channels, 18 FM stations, and 5 AM stations.[58]

The network subsequently signed off following the airing of news program TV Patrol. Along with the order, NTC wanted to recall ABS-CBN's assigned frequencies.[59] ABS-CBN explained that it would not be in public interest to have the frequencies recalled, as this would hinder their ability to immediately restart broadcasts in the event a new franchise was granted.[60] Additionally, there were fresh measures in the Congress to grant provisional franchise,[60] which later rolled into a series of hearings to grant a fresh 25-year franchise.[61][62] NTC was told to refrain from carrying out the recall by the Congress.[62] On July 10, 2020, members of the House of Representatives, voted 70–11 to deny the franchise application of ABS-CBN, citing several issues on the network's franchise.[63][64] According to a survey released by the Social Weather Stations or SWS, released following the rejection of the network's franchise renewal, showed that majority (75%) of Filipinos want the network back.[65]


  1. ^ a b Kapamilya is a Filipino term for a family member.


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