Argentine newspapers lash out at government "thought police" survey on media preferences

By Liliana Honorato

The Federal Administration of Public Incomes (AFIP in Spanish) in Argentina has come under fire for a controversial survey on Argentines' media and journalistic personality preferences, reported the newspaper El Día.

The 23-question voluntary survey asked which television, radio, online, and print media outlets individuals preferred along with which journalists they liked and if they "shared your 'point of view or opinion,'" reported the newspaper El Tribuno.

The head of the AFIP, Ricardo Echegaray, said the survey's objective was to "most efficiently direct public advertising funds," even though the tax administration does not manage public advertising budgets, according to the newspaper La Voz and the news service TN.

The questionnaire was called "worrying," by the newspaper Clarín and "an assault on individual liberties," by the newspaper La Razón. Clarín went on to darkly note the questions were akin to "thought police archives rather than improving communication."

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.