Down our roots we go, we originally started off as a news website named The Maritime Link by HNBC Singapore, operated by the Henrusian News Broadcasting Corporation (HNBC) in 2014, which is wholly managed by Pawsry (present-day Project Head of GFTV), who by then was yet a furry.
It covered current affairs and entertainment by gathering articles from other public news sources.
HNBC also published videos covering major events in Singapore through various programmes such as globalNEWS and News at 7, along with some event live streaming through globaINEWS LIVE.
Big names, small projects, yet a rapidly flourishing tree. As of 2016, the platform was receiving nearly a thousand unique visitors to the site, with audiences across all major continents.
The toppling of the growing tree, is not a choice
On 16th August 2017, HNBC merged with HRSMA Media Publicity Service (HRSMA MPS), the broadcasting wing of a Singapore-based mascot and furry-oriented nonprofit fandom association, the Henrusian Mascot Association (HRSMA, also headed by Pawsry).
The HRSMA-HNBC Media Publicity Service (HRSMA-HNBC MPS) is formed, after HNBC deleted their website The Maritime Link, citing a potentially serious problem arising from a lack of source citation.
The platform’s hundreds, if not thousands of audiences had to watch the utter demise of the site that had so much potential.
The merger was confirmed as HNBC couldn’t be sustained for long due to a massive loss of resources.
A sudden turn, for the furry
On 1st October 2017, HRSMA MPS rebranded into HRSMA TV. This came as HRSMA emphasised more on using online platforms to promote the mascot fandom and connect global mascot fans together.
However, from September 2018 onwards, the channel started to cover the furry fandom; HRSMA shifted focus towards it after Pawsry became a furry in August 2018.
Since then, HRSMA TV publishes its iconic furry-oriented series HRSMA FurryTalks (present-day The Pawsry Show) on a weekly basis which covers various furry topics, from culture to some furry news as well. It was hosted by Pawsry.
An eye for the future
On 9th November 2018, HRSMA TV rebranded into the International Furry Broadcasting Service (IFBS), sporting a brand new logo and slogan.
More programmes were introduced; HRSMA FurryTalks became The Furry Show on 22nd December, and The Furry Report (now GFTV News) was launched, drastically growing its content repertoire.
The IFBS was a full-on petri dish for many experimental projects. They come in the form of concepts simulating things the channel wants to create.
From radio (GFTV FurWave) to a news-focused vision (GFTV Newsday) and the largest of all, the Mass Broadcast, a 2-hour-long concept video showing how an IFBS furry TV broadcast would look like.
The IFBS ceased to broadcast on 9th February 2019 as the IFBS is engaged in merger discussions with an America-based furry radio station.
However, after the other party withdrew their intention to partner or merge with the IFBS on 12th February 2019, the IFBS reformed and rebranded once again.
It’s now Global Furry Television (GFTV).
Growing past the storm, advancing forward
As the GFTV continued to grow anew, it first established 5 programmes, laying out a foundation for content development – from news to event coverage and infotainment.
As part of an initiative to linguistically reach more furries, GFTV’s first Chinese channel was born.
Known as Channel 2 China, it went viral within the Chinese furry community during its first few days of operation, earning GFTV its biggest audience base until now.
“That was really sort of a, “undeserved” thing for the channel, to me too, because the channel is not so established by then, and yet people want to see it and had so much hopes for it.”-Project Head Pawsry
No longer a journey alone
For 4 years, it has always been a one-man operation, and it all seemed sort of empty. Even if there was unprecedented growth on the channel and having so much audience with us.
But there was one thing, that might be the very one we are ready to pursue.
Since GFTV’s launch, furry news sort of became a thing for the channel. That prompted the channel’s very first staff position openings, which mainly consisted of news editor and correspondent slots around May.
Time went by, and the response was unexpected – albeit slow, GFTV earned contributors across the Americas, Europe and Asia, forming a small yet floofy team ready to contribute to this project.
This project we call, a way, for us to contribute back to the very fandom that changed our lives for the better.
When politics rain hell on us, we press on
GFTV’s growth came at a time when the world is transitioning. Divisions come and go – some predictable, some are not. Furries are getting torn by things like politics and tribalism … and it doesn’t look pretty.
As furries call for better dialogue and apoliticism to close up divisions, there are those who reject it. These detractors mainly aim to spread their political views over a diverse community … using free speech as justification.
That goes so far as to bond labels on whoever supposedly is “pro” or “anti” whatever, and make anyone an enemy under this black-and-white context.
People desperately want facts. Only facts. We always made sure we showed them all while throwing out of our space those who want us to “safely dispose of” views contrary to their own agenda. This soon became our mantra.
No matter how many times people, even popular figures, tried to pressure us to reject this mantra, we fiercely rejected them. We proved we stand by it.
We became a bridge by accident
Seeping into furry fandom was also a longstanding Western-centric worldview. That is powered by longstanding popular furry websites – they are all Western. Is there ever an Asian voice in this dialogue table?
Here at our seat in Asia, we found a bridge: us.
We straddle between the Asian and Western communities. We are China’s first-ever SE-Asian furry news channel. And just so happens, we became the world’s first-ever bilingual furry news channel.
Don’t talk about labels. GFTV now fosters communities from both the East and West, bringing these sides closer together. China’s furry fandom relies on us for global furry fandom news.
Above all, our presence means we are balancing out, geographically, furry news sources worldwide.
Oh crap. Our responsibility just multiplied so damn much.
Blame our “first-ever” labels. Never once we have imagined ourselves in this role, in this position, let alone thought of doing … all of this.
But people started to want us, to need us. People started to trust in us, our coverage, and our data. They want us to press on.
Giving up immediately seemed so illogical. But with what we’ve learnt and where we’ve come to through these years, a stage is built. It calls on us to step on it and do … something.
It was by this time a mission, a target for us ahead became clear.
To unite the fandom together, through the power of media. For all; unbiased, objective, fearless, for good.