The news websites El Faro de El Salvador, Plaza Pública de Guatemala and Confidencial de Nicaragua are working on creating a consortium of Central American digital media outlets to cover the region. The group would seek to add other news organizations in Honduras, Costa Rica, and Panama as well.
In an interview with the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas, Carlos Fernando Chamorro, director of the news site Confidencial, explained that the idea is to formalize their current content-sharing partnership, through which these three media outlets already share information and opinion columns.
Stories such as the arrest of 18 Mexican citizens who were accused of money laundering after trying to cross the border between Honduras and Nicaragua disguised as journalists from the Mexican TV network Televisa, is only one example of the recent topics that have tied together various countries of the region. At the moment, these three news websites are looking for funding from international organizations and non-profits to hire an editor and journalists dedicated to regional press coverage.
In the following interview, Chamorro also spoke of the challenges that independent news outlets in Nicaragua are facing in the presence of growing media concentration in the country. Currently, four out of the nine open television stations in Nicaragua belong to the family of president Daniel Ortega and four others belong to Mexican businessman Ángel González.
These days in Nicaragua, official sources do not give interviews to media outlets such as Confidencial, which has forced the independent media to seek sources outside of the government to fulfill their role as government watchdogs.
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.