Respect or Ageism? Veteran DJ Cringe for Being Called “Tito” by Gen Z

DJs who have been in the game for a while are held in high regard. While calling these DJs “Tito” may appear to be a term of endearment, it can also be interpreted as a way of kissing ass to the more experienced DJs or, at worst, ageism, or discrimination based on age.

Family friends one generation above, like parent’s friends, are called “Tito” (for males) and “Tita” (for females), although they should not be confused with Tiyo and Tiya which are for blood relatives. However, “Tito” and “Tita” are also sometimes used to reference blood relatives as well.Wikipedia

One such veteran is “DJ *A**V*E,” a DJ who has been spinning records for almost two decades. Despite his experience and contributions to the industry, DJ *A**V*E has recently found himself annoyed and felt disrespected by younger DJs. What is the reason? They referred to him as “Tito,” which irritated him and many other DJs of his generation.

Importantly DO NOT EVEN start calling veteran FDJ “Tita,” or “Ate” as this can be perceived as a form of body shaming. In many cultures, women are judged based on their appearance, and their age is frequently used to determine their attractiveness. It can make her feel as if she is being judged based on her appearance, which can be hurtful and uncomfortable.

Tito DJ - Midnight Rebels

DJ *A**V*E is among those who regard the term as an insult, claiming that it is a form of ageism and implies that he is no longer relevant in the industry. His sentiments are shared by many DJs of his generation in the Philippines, who believe that their contributions to the industry are being overlooked, and that their experience and knowledge should be celebrated, not ridiculed.

There are a few reasons why DJs might be called “Tito.” For one thing, it can be a way of showing respect for their experience. In the DJ world, experience is everything. The more experience you have, the more likely you are to be booked for gigs and to be taken seriously by other DJs. So, when a younger DJ calls an older DJ “Tito,” it is a way of showing that they respect their knowledge and skills. In the same sense as our young DJ friend Kobeast, this is his way of showing respect.

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When I was a kid, my dad always taught me to be kind to more mature and knowledgeable people. He taught me how important it is to listen to the wisdom and knowledge that come with time. As I started my career as a DJ, I kept this lesson in mind, and I often call seasoned DJs in the community “tito.”

For me, calling a veteran DJ “tito” is a way to show how much I respect their skills and contributions to the industry. It’s a way to honor their years of experience and show respect for how much they know.


5 Ways to address a veteran DJ with the respect they deserve.

  • Use their professional name: Every DJ has a professional name that
    they use when performing. Using this name shows that you respect
    their craft and acknowledge their contribution to the industry.
    If you’re not sure what their professional name is, ask them.
  • Acknowledge their experience: Veteran DJs have years of experience
    and knowledge that younger DJs can learn from. Acknowledge their
    contribution to the industry and show appreciation for what they
    have achieved.
  • Be genuine: Instead of using generic terms like “Tito” or “Tita” try to
    be more specific. Use their name or a title that they have earned in the
    industry. For example, if a DJ is known for their remixing skills, you
    could refer to them as “The Remix King/Queen.”
  • Show interest in their work: Ask veteran DJs about their experiences
    and their music. Show a genuine interest in their work and let them
    know that you appreciate what they do.
  • Treat them as equals: Despite their years of experience, veteran
    DJs are still human beings. Treat them as equals and avoid
    patronizing them. Remember that they have earned their place in
    the industry through hard work and dedication, and they deserve to
    be treated with respect.

The debate over whether it is appropriate for younger DJs to call older DJs “Tito” is a complex one. On the one hand, it can be seen as a sign of respect; after all, calling someone “Tito” is a way of acknowledging their authority and experience. On the other hand, it can also be seen as a form of flattery or even kiss assing; after all, calling someone “Tito” is a way of putting them on a pedestal.

It is inevitably up to the individual DJ to decide whether or not it is appropriate for younger DJs to call older DJs “Tito.” Some may see it as a sign of respect, while others may see it as a form of flattery. There is no right or wrong answer, and it is ultimately up to the individual DJ to decide how they feel about it.

Out of respect for the people’s right to confidentiality and safety, we are not going to identify anyone by name. These stories were sent to us, and we are well aware that similar stories occur in real life. We are grateful for the opportunity to raise industry awareness in this way. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us if you have any stories that you would like to shareContact our official Facebook page


Hey, I'm a music producer, DJ, and event curator for BASS N' BACON, and run a record label. I can speak English, Tagalog, and Bisaya, and I enjoy writing about music and culture. Whether it's through my music or writing, I bring a unique perspective and lots of experience to every project I do. Thanks for checking out my work!

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