Due to a judicial order, service of WhatsApp was blocked for one day starting May 2 for about 100 million Brazilians who use the messaging application. The measure had immediate repercussions among journalists who are accustomed to using the application for communication and also on news organizations that use it to distribute information and interact with readers.
Starting June 2, broadcasters in Mexico may legally transmit information in any of the native languages of the country that are recognized as national languages, including indigenous languages.
In Venezuela, a country where restrictions on the press are rampant and access to public information is not guaranteed by law, being informed about government decisions can be problematic. That is why the Press and Society Institute (IPYS for its acronym in Spanish) Venezuela, with Transparencia Venezuela, is launching Vendata, an online platform used to easily display information contained in the “Gaceta Oficial,” the official government bulletin.
The 17th International Symposium on Online Journalism (ISOJ), a conference about online journalism organized by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas in the city of Austin, Texas from April 15 to 16, advocated for the discovery of issues currently of concern to digital media around the world.
Since Operation Car Wash began in March 2014, it has dominated the political agenda in Brazil. Considered by the Federal Police as the biggest corruption investigation ever undertaken in the country, its coverage is a challenge even for experienced journalists, like the editor in chief of Época magazine, Diego Escosteguy.
No interviews from public officials or access to press conferences, a duopoly of TV stations and most radio stations, and a law of access to public information that is not fulfilled: this is what fills the days of independent journalists in Nicaragua.
Businessman Ronan Maria Pinto, owner of São Paulo newspaper Diário do Grande ABC, was arrested on April 1 as part of Operation Car Wash, an investigation into corruption in the Brazilian government and various companies. The investigation has fueled a political crisis in Brazil that reaches the top levels of government.
The director of Complejo Editorial Alfredo Maneiro (CEAM for its initials in Spanish), the Venezuelan state enterprise in charge of selling newsprint to print media outlets in the country, was sued for what the complainants said is the discriminatory allocation of newsprint paper that caused newspaper El Carabobeño newspaper to end its print edition, according to information from the NGO Espacio Público.
Cuban independent journalist and activist Lázaro Yuri Valle Roca was jailed and held incommunicado for five days after being detained just hours before U.S. President Barack Obama’s arrival to Cuba on March 20. The journalist went to the church of Santa Rita, as usual, to cover the march led every Sunday in Havana by the Ladies in White organization, according to Martí Noticias.
New digital native media outlets are proliferating throughout Latin America. They have been created by journalists who have become entrepreneurs, driven by necessity—oppression from governments, crisis in traditional media, different types of censorship—or because they felt a drive to innovate online.