THE experiences and insights of Nanay Teresita, a 77-year-old senior citizen from Catigod, Caraga, Davao Oriental, inspire this article. Known affectionately as "Nanay Tere," she has keenly observed the evolution of major media, such as television and radio, and their profound impact on society over the decades.

Reflecting on her past, Nanay Tere said, "Considering my age, my childhood was not totally monochrome; it's not lifeless and dull as most people expected, but limited access to TV and radio posed considerable challenges for us."

Radio and television served as the primary sources of information and updates, bridging gaps even across vast distances. Despite the presence of telegraphs and telephones, people preferred radio and television for their adaptability, swift transmission, and energy efficiency. Yet, enjoying these media wasn't a simple feat for Nanay Tere's mountainous locale.

"Before we can run the television and radio, we must find a way; risk ourselves," she recalled while sipping her cocoa. 

According to her, achieving a clear signal then demanded effort, such as scaling rooftops or tall trees to manipulate the antenna's metallic parts carefully. Unlike modern thin steel antennas, their signal-receiving apparatus consisted of pure bronze wires affixed to bamboo sticks. A similar process is applied to radio reception.

Nanay Tere recounted that due to their distance from urban areas with cinemas and theaters, they resorted to renting beta max tapes for the latest movies or constructing mini projectors using a white cloth. Acquiring stereo boxes and cassettes became necessary to stay current with new music trends.

In contrast, the current generation thrives on technology, with media accessibility being instant and effortless. Televisions have evolved into color-rich, flat-screen digital marvels, while radio waves now grace smartphones.

Yet, Nanay Tere also imparted her observations on the inception and evolution of radio and television.

"In the early 50s, during my time, radio dramas were all the rage. I vividly recall Diego Salvador, renowned for his comedic Bisayan radio segments. In the 70s, icons like Nora Aunor, Sharon Cuneta, and Vilma Santos reigned supreme in the entertainment industry." 

She noted that the 90s witnessed the advent of color television, ushering in an era of educational and game shows. However, the media's influence leans towards aggressiveness and liberation in the current generation.

Technology, particularly media, holds a dual role of allure and influence, shaping the world and human identity. Beyond traditional broadcast media, the Internet has significantly impacted contemporary society. Media and communication have been pivotal in shaping global conditions, processing knowledge, and driving cultural, social, political, and economic occurrences for decades.

Nanay Tere breathed her last in 2022. May her soul rest in peace. DEF