Thursday, August 25, 2005

KBP Ads Blues

A word from the sponsors

Bayani San Diego Jr.
Inquirer News Service

WHY did the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) resign from the Advertising Board of the Philippines (AdBoard)?

Maria Belen Fernando, president of Pana (or the Philippine Association of National Advertisers, an AdBoard member) explained to Inquirer Entertainment that KBP bolted "to keep its organization unified."

Fernando said the main issue was "the 18-minute commercial load limit (per hour of TV shows) that KBP wants followed, based on the rules in the KBP Code."

According to reports, KBP voiced out the concern that because non-KBP members—like TV giant GMA 7—could go beyond the 18-minute regulation, an "uneven playing field" had been created.

Pana, however, pointed out that advertisers were "not in agreement" as to what constituted the maximum commercial load.

Fernando elaborated: "Some believe 18 minutes is sufficient. Others believe it should be lower or higher, depending on the program or the time slot."

She recalled that the 18-minute rule was set about 10 years ago, when the load limit was increased from 14 minutes. "Considering the developments in the industry and the various markets that companies compete in," she said, "it may be time to (reconsider) the rule."

Business decisions

As of now, she added, "There is no basis in saying 18 minutes is high, low or just right. Advertisers' placements are business decisions, not whims."

The Pana board of directors has consulted the CEOs and marketing heads of major advertisers, Fernando said.

Ongoing are the meetings of Pana, the KBP Board of Directors and the 4 As (Association of Accredited Advertising Agencies).

It was decided in one of those meetings, said Fernando, that the Pana would commission a thorough research to determine the commercial load that consumers could take across various program types. She said a task force had been organized by the advertisers for this purpose. The group is composed of "research experts and representatives from Pana-member companies, independent media and advertising agencies."

This, she insisted, would be a milestone. "It would also be costly, [but] the results and information will be valuable and helpful." She was optimistic that the disagreements would eventually be ironed out.

"We look forward to the return of the KBP," Fernando said. "After all, media [particularly the broadcasting sector] is one of the pillars of the industry."