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EDSA Billboard Update : Dark Skies Looming Over the Billboard Industry?

It's been awhile since I've written on this blog. I sure am glad to be back. I just had to take a much needed break from a grueling year of taking up Digital Marketing at the Ateneo Graduate School of Business, which leads to my certification as a Certified Digital Marketer (there are currently only 19 Certified Digital Marketers in the country as of the moment).

So having put the studies and the summer vacation aside, I am now back to one of the things I love most - writing. A few weeks back, one of our colleagues in the outdoor advertising industry complained about how I've neglected this blog. I apologized. The digital side of me took over the Lloyd Tronco of OOH media.

Today, we see dark skies looming over the outdoor advertising industry. We've heard of the current MMDA Chairman's drive to rid EDSA of billboards. That seems aligned to some of those who view billboards as a menace to the traffic situation. But hey, billboards don't cause accidents, much less cause traffic. Furthermore, there isn't any shred of evidence to prove that a billboard has caused a vehicular accident. We know though that these three things do cause traffic accidents : overspeeding bus drivers (be it a legal or colorum bus), motorcycles which weave in and out of the traffic and dodging lanes as if they were playing "patentero", and drivers who text while driving. In a nutshell, billboards don't cause accidents but other obvious factors do.

Amidst this, the sites are trained on the billboards because they seem to be an easy target whereby "pogi points" can be accumulated. And perhaps, maybe because the MMDA is still scared to take on the alleged protectors of the transport industry, whose vehicles pose the real danger of running down civilians and crashing cars on the highway.

So yesterday, all the OAAP members were assembled at the favorite venue for General Membership Meetings, Panciteria San Jacinto. It was close to Standing Room Only state after the announcement came a week earlier that the honored speaker would be Atty. Francis Tolentino of the MMDA. I was not in the least bit surprised to see an envoy sent instead of the Chairman himself. The OAAP membership should have known that no one in his right mind would feed himself into the lion's den so to speak. Even as the envoy came in, it was a signal to leave. I had to prepare anyway for the webinar I would be conducting in the evening on Digital Marketing Trends.

On my way back to Makati, I passed by Shell Buendia to see that too many MMDA hired hands were on the rooftop of Shell and atop United Neon's billboard to amateurishly dismantle the structure. Dark skies behind served as a foreboding that there may be difficult days ahead for the outdoor advertising industry. But then again, where there are dark clouds, there also exists a silver lining.

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