25 September 2015

PBA Trying To Take Back Earlier Error

The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) is trying to make the necessary correction to their earlier ruling to ban Spin.ph reporter Snow Badua after receiving enormous amount of flak from online citizens and several members of the media.

Statements issued before by Commissioner Chito Narvasa surmise that Badua will not be allowed to write anything about the league under pain of (an unspecified) penalty. But in the new article at the PBA website, it says that Badua "can continue to write, criticize, publish and distribute his stories about the PBA in any media platform he so desires."

The clarification note also said that the bad was a result of Badua "spreading false and unverified reports." How can it be false and unverified when there was a confession by Abby Poblador that she had an affair with San Miguel Corporation (SMC) Governor Alfrancis Chua? And what kind of investigation was conducted by the PBA to come up with this conclusion?

The statement with several inconsistencies from the earlier pronouncements is posted below:

"The Philippine Basketball Association imposed a ban on contributing writer Snow Badua following his series of malicious and unfounded reports against the league’s member ballclubs and its officials.

The sanction means all privileges provided to him by the league as an accredited media practitioner has been revoked.

The accreditation issued by the league is a privilege and not a right, and subjects the accredited party to observe and follow the host’s house rules and ethical norms within their jurisdiction.

Media practitioners accredited by the PBA are entitled to free access to restricted areas in all venues, practice games and special events. The bearer is also provided with game statistics, invited to PBA social activities and given access to team officials, including coaches and players, who are properties of the PBA.

Suffice to say, that privilege can be revoked should the accredited party break these rules.

Apparently, Mr. Badua has abused the so called freedom of expression countless times by spreading false and unverified reports through social media. Team owners, coaches as well as league officials have called the attention of the Commissioner’s Office on this issue.

The PBA respects Mr. Badua’s right to free speech, a right that cannot be taken away from him.

In the same breath, the PBA also has the right to protect itself against those who are out to besmirch and tarnish the integrity of the institution, including its officers and staff.

The PBA acknowledges media’s democratic right to free expression. But we also understand that a responsible media doesn’t use that right to besmirch anyone, especially if it is unfounded.

While the PBA stands by its decision, the league cannot prohibit Mr. Badua from performing his function as a journalist. He will be allowed entry to any arena where PBA games are held and he can continue to write, criticize, publish and distribute his stories about the PBA in any media platform he so desires. But like any basketball fan, he will now have to buy a ticket to be able to enter the venue.

Also, he will not have access anymore to the secured and restricted areas reserved for PBA participants and accredited partners, including the coaches and players and all other data and information reserved for accredited partners. This holds true also for all events in malls and other public areas.

The Office of the Commissioner issued this clarification in order to address and allay fears by some quarters, who interpret the ban on Mr. Badua as a curtailment of the freedom of the press.

PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa and the Board of Governors consider their media partners family. The league acknowledges and is grateful for the big contribution of its media partners."

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