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When the one giving the news becomes the news

June 13, 2008

I’m sure you’ve heard or read about the kidnapping of Ces Drillon and her crew in Sulu.

Here is a summary of the story based on several reports that I have been reading.

  1. Ces and her crew went to Sulu to interview the former leader of the Abu Sayaf group who have signified their intent to surrender to the Government in exchange for some stuff that they were asking.Ces and her crew went there knowing the danger that they will be facing.
  2. A faction of the notorious group was the one who kidnapped Ces and her crew. The real cause is yet to be known.
  3. ABS-CBN, the employer of Ces, requested for a media black-out which was heeded by media outfits, both print and broadcast. Now there’s an issue on why media accepted the request. ABS-CBN should also heed similar requests in the future.
  4. Initially, it was believed that the news broke out from abroad by an international media outfit. MLQ3 says that it was the Governmnet run Channel 4 that broke the news.
  5. Government asking for restraint in reporting and not speculate.
  6. Kidnappers are asking for ransom.
  7. High profile individuals in Sulu are now making efforts to end the situation
  8. One hostage was released but ABS-CBN allegedly paid Board and Lodging fee.
  9. Mindanao is again at the center of the news.

My opinion…

1. My guess is that they had assurance that they will not be harmed.

2. Well, they’re cold blooded ruthless hell worshippers.. what would you expect? It also shows that they are not that organized and the Government should take advantage of that. Also, those in the group have no respect for each other. That anyone can just stand up and do something even without the knowledge of other leaders in the group.

3. I would have done the same for my employees. In that time at that moment, it was the logical thing to do. You know what kind of animals the kidnapers are. They can kill anyone, anytime, anywhere. Those saying that people in the surroundings could have been alerted, hey, they know.. They know who are Abu Sayaff members, they know who are NPAs, who are MILF members. I know because i’ve seen it happen here in Compostella Valley. People here know each other. If one is a member of what group/faction of the NPA. They know but you wont hear them speak. That’s how it works if you still want to live. I bet you already know that by now.

Those saying that by heeding the call to be silent about the incident, ABS-CBN or those media groups has successfully Managed the News. But as journalists, shouldn’t you be doing that? You should broadcast or write something informative and that would not cause harm to anyone. I’m not a journalist, but that’s how i see it.

And as I’ve commented in one blog, this should serve as a precedent on how the media should handle this kind of situations.

There’s also this letter from  a professor saying that the call for media restraint is subjective and unethical and that it only shows that Ces is being treated differently than any other individual. That they are “powerful and special”.

I say yes she/they are different.. and yes she/they are powerful in their own right.. like the power to convince people.. and yes this world does not treat its people equally and he should know that. That’s precisely why there are reports coming out that the kidnappers are asking a BIG sum of money for their release. Because they are not ordinary citizens plus they come from a not so ordinary company.

What Ces will report after this incident will surely be something to watch out for. If she was just an ordinary citizen, would a lot of people listen to what she will have to say? I don’t think so.

4. zzzz. Practice what you preach.

5. They should.. Coz media always gives out details of their plans. Hahhaha

6. A big ransom.. because they are celebrities and as i pointed out earlier, they are not ordinary citizens.

7. They should do something to prevent this from happening again. they’re the ones in power. I hope they’ll use it.

8. Well, no  ransom has been paid.. but transportation costs, loding and food costs during the short “stay” at the camp has a price.

9. Sulu is part of Mindanao.. Cagayan de oro is in Mindanao, Zamboanga is in Mindanao.. Davao, a great and peaceful place is also part of Mindanao. There are places in Mindanao where peace exists. There maybe crimes.. but not something like this. I hope that media would also report positive things about Mindanao even though this maybe overshadowed by negative events like this kidnapping.

Lastly, i hope i do not see or hear any remarks saying that this is just a publicity stunt of the lopezes to lure the public’s attention away from the meralco issue. I don’t think anyone would want to be held captured by ruthless sons of hell where if they tell you not to blink, and you did, then that will be the last thing you did alive.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 18, 2008 8:36 am says: that’s why the media is called the Fourth Estate because of the power they wield—no longer just power of the men but the computer and the Internet I should say…


  1. Manuel L. Quezon III: The Daily Dose » Blog Archive » A heinous situation

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