Three months into his presidency, the controversial, embattled Rodrigo Chaves has given Costa Ricans an unsparing earful of his feelings toward the press. In that respect, even the leader of the ‘Switzerland of Central America’ is no exception to the Central American rule. At the same time, it’s ironic that Costa Rica remains a haven for journalists exiled from Daniel Ortega’s Nicaragua.
Aware that widespread disinformation and threats to press freedom pose threats to democracy, the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States (OAS) launched the Center for Media Integrity of the Americas. This center intends to hold training seminars and conferences and offer grants to encourage the production of journalistic investigations. John Feeley, executive director of the new Center, spoke to the LatAm Journalism Review about the initiative.
In FLIP's analysis, the government of Iván Duque, which ends on August 7, maintained a strategy of friend-or-foe with the press. With those considered critical, distrust and secrecy prevailed. In addition, he used human and economic resources to prioritize institutional communication and impose his narrative. This contributed to an atmosphere of polarization and built a wall that affected access to information.
Via a podcast, César Pérez Romero, son of one of the directors of the Ecuadorian newspaper El Universo, decided to tell from a more personal perspective what was behind the historic case of the newspaper against then-president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, during one of the most difficult times for freedom of expression in that country.
All winning stories in this year’s IPYS’s National Journalism Contest were published by independent digital news outlets. This situation remains the same, year after year, due to the Venezuelan government’s censorship. The collaboration and support of international organizations has been key to keeping investigative journalism alive in Venezuela
The Chapultepec Index of Freedom of Expression and Press shows the evolution of the indicators of freedom in the practice of journalism between 2019-2020 and 2020-2021. The Executive Branch appears to be most influential in unfavorable situations for the press in the Americas.
Brazilian journalist Rubens Valente participated in the "5 questions” section of the LatAm Journalism Review (LJR). In the interview, he talks about the conviction that forces him to pay USD 70,000 to a justice of the Supreme Court. "Its effect was that it provoked the worst censorship of all: self-censorship”, Valente said.
Amendments approved this month by Cuba's National Assembly, which hinder foreign funding and imprison anyone who slanders public officials, provide the Cuban regime with legal tools to justify its attacks on independent press coverage.
Although Uruguay has been considered a benchmark for freedom of expression, the eighth monitoring report by the Center for Archives and Access to Public Information (Cainfo) recorded a 40 percent increase over the previous year in cases of threats and restrictions on journalists. There has been an increase in the number of cases for the third consecutive year and regressive legal reforms in terms of human rights and freedom of expression.
“It is an attack on freedom of expression and information,” journalist Rubens Valente said. The Superior Court of Justice and the Supreme Federal Court of Brazil ruled that Valente has to compensate Supreme Court Justice Gilmar Mendes because of information contained in Valente’s book “Operação Banqueiro.”