ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs, the news and current programming affairs division of leading Filipino media and entertainment company ABS-CBN Corporation and its global flagship channel, TFC, has decided to strategize and redesign news programming and news delivery.  

The result: starting on July 19, TFC News shows in U.S. and Canada, Europe, Middle East, and Asia-Pacific are now incorporated as segments within TV Patrol, the leading and longest-running Filipino news program in the world.  These regional news segments are also available on ABS-CBN News online.

This programming redesign gives overseas Filipinos and international viewers not only news relevant to their localities but a more comprehensive global picture that helps them connect the dots on events that directly and indirectly impact their lives.

Award-winning overseas news bureaus

For overseas Filipino communities who used to watch Balitang America (later BA), Balitang Canada, Balitang Asia-Pacific, Balitang Europe and Balitang Middle East as highly local and separate news programs for years, they will continue to receive news from award-winning news bureaus that they have come to trust for reliable news and information. 

The following distinguished veteran journalists will still head the Global Bureau: TJ Manotoc for North America (U.S. and Canada); Maxxy Santiago for Middle East; Rose Eclarinal for Europe; and Israel Malasa for Asia-Pacific. 

“This is essentially an augmentation and expansion of news coverage and footprint presented almost as a one-stop-shop for Filipino news,” said ABS-CBN Global COO Aldrin M. Cerrado.  “This initiative is a strategic alliance among three strong Filipino media industry brands: TFC, ‘TV Patrol’ and ABS-CBN News online.  As for the teams, trust and credibility are crucial so we made sure to retain news heads, reporters and correspondents that are highly skilled and experienced, reputable and respected in the communities they serve.”

For North America, San Francisco-based Manotoc’s Emmy-winning team includes the following:

  • U.S. – Desk Editor/Producer Henni Espinosa, and correspondents Rommel Conclara (Northern California), Steve Angeles and Albert Bataclan (Southern California), Yong Chavez and Manny Dela Rosa (Hollywood), Don Tagala (New York), Bev Llorente (Nevada and Washington), Fleur Magbanua Mansur (Arizona), Jared Bray (Utah), Cheryl Piccio (Texas), Connie Macatula De Leon (Virginia), Lenn Almadin Thornhill (Georgia), Paul Garilao (Florida), and Lalaine Ignao (Hawaii).
  • Canada – From Ontario, Christine Santos (Toronto) and Vanessa Merjudio-David (Ottawa); from Alberta, Quay Evano (Calgary) and Marjorie Carmona-Newton (Edmonton); from Manitoba, Rhia Alcantara (Winnipeg); and from British Columbia, Rowena Papasin, Cecile Docto, and Elizabeth Raymundo  (Vancouver).

From Europe, London-based Eclarinal’s team includes the following:

  • France – Bong Agustinez, Cory de Jesus, Maan Alcantara-Rivera, and Marilyn Rayray (Paris)
  • UK – Ed Lao
  • Ireland – Vanda Brady and Roderick Garcia
  • Italy – Jackie de Vega, Jocelyn Ruiz Roxas, Maricel Burgonio, and Mye Mulingtapang
  • Germany – Grace Sheela Pickert, Jessica Gross, Orly Delos Santos, and Virgilio Cuizon 
  • Austria – Hector Pascua
  • Belgium – Raquel Crisostomo (Brussels)
  • The Netherlands – Jofelle Tesorio
  • Norway – Macel Ingles (Oslo)
  • Sweden – Vangie Rebot Jorquia (Stockholm)
  • Denmark – Rosemary Menta and Rustan Jay Menta (Copenhagen)
  • Spain – Sandra Sotelo, Alex Alikpala and Spain Lucas (Madrid)
  • Turkey – Weng Timoteo
  • Greece – Wilhelmina Mendoza-Buado (Athens)
  • Russia – Niel Tero

From Middle East, Kuwait-based Santiago’s team includes the following:

  • Qatar – Ardee De Leon and Kimina Castro
  • UAE – Benjie Canamaso, Milanie Regalado, Rachel Salinel, Randy Lamsen and Rouie Villegas (Dubai), Vivien Napenas and Bryan Villacarlos (Abu Dhabi)
  • Saudi Arabia – Sherwin Zuniga and Charles Tabbu (Jeddah), Florante Catanus (Al-khobar), Lyndon Aballe, JP Aleta, and Zhariya Camid (Riyadh)
  • Assir Region – Debbie Jane Pangan
  • Bahrain – Leslie Garduque
  • Kuwait – Robert Bulquiren
  • Lebanon – Rhyse Furio
  • Oman – Rowen Soldevilla

From Asia-Pacific, Manila-based Malasa’s team, includes the following: 

  • New Zealand – Regine Panlilio (Wellington) and Seresa Lapaz (Auckland)
  • Australia – Rhea Bragas and Helen Quiñanola (Sydney)
  • South Korea – Gennie Kim and Joeffrey Maddatu Calimag
  • Taiwan – Marie Yang

Digital first

Key in the news redesign is the “digital first” approach. 

As New Jersey-based digital journalism professor and educator Dr. Mu Lin wrote in his training blog, MulinBlog Online J-School, “Web and mobile platforms demand us to adopt a platform-neutral mindset for an all-inclusive production approach — create the (digital) content first then distribute via appropriate platforms.”

“Going ‘digital first’ doesn’t mean being available only on web and mobile platforms; it’s true that digital deliveries will be enhanced, but it also means accessibility on the proper or fitting platforms for a specific story,” said Cerrado.  “In addition, this also means viewers don’t need a gated access to watch TFC News on TV Patrol. The news program will be available on multiple platforms.  It just so happens that web and mobile platforms have become the preferred options.”

“Ultimately, news is public service,” said Cerrado.  “Access to trustworthy news and information is essential to effective governance, civic engagement and participatory democracy. ABS-CBN is steadfastly committed to doing its part as a responsible media company.”

TV Patrol with TFC News can be seen on cable, satellite, online, on mobile platforms and on ABS-CBN News YouTube channel.  Visit https://news.abs-cbn.com/tfcnews for more information.