A Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted from July 3 to 6 showed that 56 percent of Filipinos believed the denial of a new franchise to ABS-CBN would be a “major blow to press freedom.”

The survey results, released a day after the House Committee on Legislative Franchises voted to deny ABS-CBN’s franchise bid, had 1,555 adult Filipino (aged 18 above) respondents.

SWS found 27 percent disagreeing and 15 percent undecided after being asked if “Congress’ non-renewal of ABS-CBN franchise is a major blow to press freedom.”

Seventy-five percent of adult Filipinos expressed support for the franchise renewal of ABS-CBN. Only 13 percent disagreed, while 10 percent were undecided when asked if Congress should renew the network’s franchise, which expired on May 4.

The poll was conducted concurrently with House hearings on ABS-CBN’s franchise application.

Previous surveys by the pollster found high trust among Filipinos on the embattled network.

In 11 surveys from October 2000 to December 2018, net trust in ABS-CBN was excellent in six polls and very good in five.

SWS said the most recent surveys were conducted using mobile phones and computer-assisted telephone interviewing.

Of the 1,555 respondents, 306 were from Metro Manila, 451 were from Balance Luzon, 388 were from the Visayas, and 410 were from Mindanao.

The pollster said the sampling error margins were as follows: ±2% for national percentages; ±6% for Metro Manila; ±5 for Balance Luzon; ±5% for Visayas; and ±5% for Mindanao. John Ezekiel J. Hirro