April 17, 2024

Confidence, grit, and proper pronunciation. These are just some of the main ingredients that make an incredible broadcaster. Thanks to another trend on the social media platform, Tiktok, the average person can have a taste of what it’s like to recite the news.
Dubbed as “The Prompter Challenge,” Tiktok enthusiasts are tasked to read from an on-screen teleprompter which resembles what actual television news broadcasters use. It was a viral craze that inadvertently sparked interest towards the field of broadcasting. And honestly, it felt like a calling for me.
As a sophomore Communication student, it seemed like a fun little exercise. At first, it seemed like a neat little trend that I could totally nail in one attempt. Oh, what a sweet summer child I was – try after try, after try, after try. There was always that one syllable, in that one word, in that one sentence that seemed impossible for me to get right. And even in the event that I got that one right, there was always another hurdle to stumble upon later. O woe is me; o woe is me; it felt more like a tongue-twisting agony. However, I still revelled in the challenge. With every failed attempt, I got closer to completely nailing the challenge in a single take. I was completely and utterly humbled.
After some time, it had dawned on me that because of this new normal setup in education, I had never truly been faced with academic activities such as this. I mean, the new normal definitely had me reading, filling my mind with technical knowhow about broadcasting. But this was way different. It was the closest a broadcasting student can get to the hands-on experiences we should have been enjoying in our Mass Communication laboratory.
Honestly, I never viewed myself as an articulate, eloquent or fluent speaker. In fact, after every stutter, every stumble, and every mispronounced word, I hit the delete button on my recorder and try again. After finally learning how to pace myself, control my breath, and read ahead, I had done it. It took me all night, or at least that’s what it felt like. That was definitely a lot harder than I expected.
This #PrompterChallenge taught me all the more to respect broadcasters. I can’t imagine the immeasurable determination one has to possess to do this live, and yet. With sweat pouring down my face, with my hair and suit messy and frazzled, I let out a small, proud smirk. I “tasted” the prompter – a taste of what’s yet to come. (EARL HENDRICK PATARAS)