Hope and anticipation for MNL48, AKB48’s Filipina sister group (Part 2)

Don’t forget to read Hope and anticipation for MNL48, AKB48’s Filipina sister group (Part 1)


Clipping of newspaper article on MNL48 (poster on Twitter by user WONWOO @rapsvtnn)

Challenges and opportunities for MNL48 fandom

I believe it will not be smooth sailing for MNL48, but it will be a fun ride and a great learning experience for the first generation members. There will be the scandals, of course, unless they are bright enough not to fall into the lures of an untimely or unwanted romance. Such issue can be contained, but the biggest challenges, I think, will be record sales and music piracy.

In the Philippines, a record needs to hit the sales threshold of 7,500 for gold certification, 15,000 for platinum, and 150,000 for diamond – all measly totals compared to the sales and shipment thresholds of China (domestic shipments of 20,000 for gold and 40,000 for platinum), Indonesia (domestic sales of 35,000 for gold and 75,000 for platinum), and Japan (shipments of 100,000 for gold, 250,000 for platinum, and 1,000,000 for diamond). Guess we are not an enthusiastic music record-buying country.

To sustain MNL48, we need to spread awareness of AKB48’s Filipina sister group. We must support them in the same manner as Indonesians support JKT48. We need to make MNL48 an enduring act, not a one-hit wonder. We need to emphasize record and ticket sales as primary means of supporting the group. We need not to just settle for gold, but platinum and diamond plaques.


MNL48 billboard up in Quezon City, Metro Manila (image from http://www.notey.com/blogs/mnl48)

With the limited number of TV and radio networks in our country, we need to plant the consciousness in locations that will matter, not only in Metro Manila, but also in top-tier areas like Metro Cebu, Davao City, Iloilo City, Bacolod, Dumaguete, and Cagayan de Oro. We may as well need to bring MNL48 to PBA games, huge fiesta celebrations (like the Sinulog of Cebu), mall and school shows (lots of them) and even Filipino festivals abroad because, unlike Japan, the Philippines has a limited number of entertainment events.

TV and radio guestings are necessary to establish the brand of MNL48 as long as Mo Twister and Vice Ganda are not involved. We should as well bring the game to online streaming, Internet TV, podcasts, and even mobile applications. Interactive is the key!

Another issue we need to address is the rampant music piracy in the Philippines. This will be the death of MNL48. To my fellow fans, let’s support MNL48 through record store purchases and legal downloads. I’m killing myself here, but it will be worth the money, right? I mean, we get pictures, posters and other freebies that come with the record purchase.


MNL48 merchandise (image by Quaestor on http://www.back2gaming.com)

We can also commit to purchasing other merchandises: I hope there will be MNL48 notebooks, pens, and even food items. Let’s support MNL48 in many ways.

The entry of MNL48 will give Filipino music fans an opportunity to listen to songs other than novelty songs and cover songs and to artists other than Taylor Swift, One Direction, Sarah Geronimo, etc. That is, if FM stations choose to play MNL48.

Let’s pray for the success of MNL48

With MNL48 we can show how we locally love AKB48 and J-pop culture in general. The higher-ups at AKB48 has given us this opportunity to host a sister group, so let’s make the best use of this opportunity. Let’s cherish this gift. Let’s give Yasushi Akimoto and company a great return of investment. I hope the Philippine market is ready to support MNL48.

More importantly, let’s pray for the success and well-being of MNL48. May they be able to juggle between music and studies and handle the challenges of being an idol. We pray they stay away from potential scandals and conduct themselves properly before the public. May they keep in mind that they will not only gain local fans, but international fans as well.

To MNL48, we are ready to support you!

Resources and suggested readings:

‘Idols You Can Meet’ AKB48 Filipino Version: Will We Soon See MNL48?


Hallohallo inc will build a Theatre for MNL48

Idol group MNL48 debut coming soon

MNL48 Facebook Page

FilWota48 Facebook Page

MNL48 Stage48 entry




  1. Waiting anxiously in America
    : )

    • I pray MNL48 will create a positive impact in the Philippines – and in the whole 48 fandom.

      • I’m starting to think that this is really going to happen!

      • Indeed, Denny. Excitement is coming.

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