Lessons learned from producing during Covid-19
Based in L.A., our new fellow shares his vision for the coming year.
The controversy over Disney’s Princess Sofia reflects misunderstandings about Latinos and race says Fi2W commentator Jack Tomas.
Learning how to put a human face on complex media policy issues for ethnic and community audiences will be critical to closing the digital divide between media haves and have-nots.
Advocates across the nation have begun a 10 day countdown for immigration reform that will culminate on May 1st, while analysts argue over the fate of an ephemeral bill.
After a tough economic year, many Mexican immigrants who usually return home from the U.S. for Christmas and New Year are more likely to stay home.
By Diego Graglia, FI2W web editor
Some Latinos among CNN’s audience feel the network is adding insult to injury. This week CNN started broadcasting a four-hour special on “Latinos in America” without addressing the controversy over one of its main stars, Lou Dobbs, and his frequent statements against immigrants in general and Mexicans in particular.
Protests were held across the country to coincide with the launch of “Latinos in America.” One activist even tried to complain about Dobbs in an interview on CNN, but claims the network censored her.
San Antonio civil rights lawyer Isabel García told The New York Times‘ blog “Media Decoder” that the channel edited her comments out of a taped interview in which she debated with Phoenix-area Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
She said she called Mr. Arpaio and Mr. Dobbs “the two most dangerous men to our communities,” and added that “because of them, our communities are being terrorized in a real way.” She also asserted that CNN was “promoting lies and hate about our community” by broadcasting Mr. Dobbs’s program. The comments were not included when the interview was broadcast.
A CNN spokeswoman said: “The segment was tied to CNN’s documentary ’Latino in America,’ which is a far-reaching look at the successes and challenges Latinos are facing — including illegal immigration. As with all pretaped interviews, they are edited for time and relevance to the topic of discussion. The debate between Isabel Garcia and Joe Arpaio was no exception.”
Hispanic and pro-immigrant activists are becoming increasingly vocal in their demand that CNN drop host Lou Dobbs. Dobbs has a history of supporting fringe conspiracy theories –like the so-called “birther” movement that questions whether President Obama was born in the U.S, and one that claimed immigrants were spreading leprosy in America.
The latest of several campaigns against Dobbs was launched yesterday. It targeted CNN reporter Soledad O’Brien, who has Hispanic roots and occasionally reports on Latino issues for the network. She has an upcoming special called “Latino in America” that will air next month.
“Tell Soledad O’Brien that CNN can’t have it both ways. CNN should not make money off of the fastest growing demographic in the U.S., Latinos, at the same time that it promotes the type of dangerous language that has led to increasing hate crimes against those very same Latinos,” said the campaign launched by an activist on Twitter.
This is just one of several initiatives on the web against Dobbs. Presente.org, a “national online advocacy organization,” launched BastaDobbs.com (Enough Dobbs). Miami-based activist group Democracia U.S.A. created another campaign, asking CNN to “to hold Mr. Dobbs to journalistic standards.” Monitoring organization Media Matters, the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), America’s Voice and various other groups have put up DropDobbs.com, which aims to convince advertisers to pull their ads from Dobbs’ show.
Thousands of Venezuelans living abroad, for example, used Facebook last week to learn about and participate in an international protest against President Hugo Chavez. They set their Facebook status to the demonstration’s slogan: “No Más Chavez” (No More Chavez.)
The use of Facebook and other social networks by the Venezuelan opposition had already become so prominent by July this year that the Venezuelan government responded with an official statement. In response to the September march, it also launched its own Facebook campaign.
Immigrant advocacy groups in the U.S. are also using Facebook to increase their visibility and mobilization.
Make the Road New York, a New York City-based immigrant advocacy organization, is exploring the idea of incorporating Facebook training in its computer literacy workshops for immigrants and revamping its presence on the social network. The idea came from Mauricio Rocha, 24, who arrived in Queens from Colombia three months ago. Rocha thinks Facebook can contribute to the organization’s effort to mobilize immigrants.
“Every person of my age uses Facebook, not only on their desktops or laptops but on their phone and handhelds,” said Rocha. “Older people learn and adapt very quickly to this technology. In Colombia, Facebook helped organize a million-person movement against the FARC. We can do the same here in Queens.”
A random search on the “Facebook Groups” option will bring up congregations of Mexican Jews, Haitians in Connecticut, Indians Abroad, Colombians in London, Israelis in the World — all sorts of nationalities and movements have created their own Facebook public square.
A search of the word “immigration” this week showed almost 7,000 groups.