— teleSUR TV (@teleSURtv) January 6, 2018
With 2017 ending as one of the worst years for press freedom in Venezuela, the official hegemony has decided to counter reality with their own narrative: The Bolivarian Republic is actually under attack by the Empire’s malicious press. What’s their evidence? A “listing” of “negative news”.
Nicolás Maduro spoke about it recently and the dictatorship’s international channel, Telesur, followed through with an error-laden and deliberately vague piece intended to present themselves as victims and avoid any real debate about Venezuela.
Of course, the actual count hasn’t been made available to the public. Maduro said Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza gave him a report. That’s all. No details about methodology or the reasoning to point out the U.S. of A. as the main culprit. Zero links to underlying data. The usual.
Accusing “media corporations from the U.S.” is strange. Many on the list aren’t exactly corporations, others aren’t from the U.S.: the Associated Press (AP) which is a non-profit cooperative involving a number of U.S. print and broadcast outlets (some represented in AP’s Board of Directors), and Agence France-Press (AFP) is, duh, French. And fully independent from their government.
But the discussion of what really is a corporation and their countries of origin is besides the point; this is about demonizing the media and avoiding responsibility. In the official narrative, private media is a mercenary cabal of evil, capitalist, imperialist U.S.A. and its domestic lackeys, all to create chaos in the peaceful chavista dream. Period.
The very same government that made it difficult (if not impossible) for foreign correspondents to cover the country, blocked international TV channels, shut down local radio stations, harrased journalists and let non-friendly newspapers die, wants to show itself as victim of a “media war”. But to do so they give us numbers that we can’t check on the basis of a methodology they don’t share. Because for them, news agencies should be focused in public relations. Like the hegemony’s AVN.
The icing on the cake: they’re also getting involved in the “fake news” trend.
Girish Gupta, the Reuters’ journalist who, sadly, is about to leave Venezuela, puts it best:
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Amazing that Venezuela’s government somehow quantifies, “News outlets that produce most news against Venezuela,” but doesn’t quantify the country’s inflation, GDP, infancy mortality rate (it publishes an absolute figure here) etc. https://t.co/AzVeOpKDtM
— Girish Gupta (@jammastergirish) January 6, 2018