March 5, 2021

Latin American satirical media coincide in the need to "point to power"

Latin American satirical media coincide in the need to "point to power"



Directors and editors of the satirical media Mongolia (Spain), El Chigüire Bipolar (Venezuela), Barcelona (Argentina) and El Chamuco (Mexico) agreed today in Medellin on the need to "point to power" and not the humblest to do his work.

"We aim at power, not at the bottom," said Pere Rusiñol, editor of Mongolia, in the debate "Let's get serious! The power of journalistic satire," which is part of the Gabriel García Márquez Journalism Festival that concludes today. .

Reflecting on the limits of humor, Rusiñol said that in Mongolia they would not make the same joke in one place or another, so "the same joke about Catholicism (…) in Spain seems very appropriate (.. .) but in Saudi Arabia, where a Catholic may kill him because he is, it seems inappropriate. "

"In Saudi Arabia we will have to make a joke about the Muslims, which is why in Spain, what we have to do if we want to take power is to get involved with our power, Catholicism or the monarchy," he said.

Rusiñol also said that, for him, "the economic issue is fundamental" for a satirical magazine such as Mongolia, since the most comfortable form of censorship is to demand it and to close by not being able to pay the fines.

"If censorship is a scandal, but if a magazine closes because it has no money, well this happens every day," he added.

For this reason, he affirmed that the satirical media should be able to improve as companies, although he believes it necessary that "big capitals" do not enter, because then they would lose their very essence.

"Covert censorship is the one that will most prosper in the coming years," he said about the economic sanctions faced by media such as Mongolia.

For his part, Juan Ravell, Chigüire Bipolar, stressed that "the politically incorrect" does not affect them "in the least when it comes to satire", but it serves as a challenge and "forces them to defend freedom of expression "

"If it offends the power, we believe that this offense is good, we will never challenge the one below, that is not humor," said the Venezuelan.

Ravell was against defining media like yours as "false news", but as "parody and fiction based on the journalistic genre".

He was particularly concerned about the different situations of censorship, since he said that "freedom of expression in Venezuela is extremely threatened", so the media faces very difficult situations, especially for investigative journalism.

For his part, Rafael Pineda "Rapé", director of El Chamuco, jokingly said that humorous media are "a total failure" and it is "very difficult" to get them out.

"We are the plagued because we get to the kitchen," he added.

The Barcelona magazine's director, Ingrid Beck, affirmed that "the strongest censorship" that they have had to face is the fact that the paper for newspapers in Argentina sells it "a single company whose owners are the State and the main newspapers of the country".

For that reason, for them "it is increasingly difficult to print and keep going".

Beck also used the irony to consider that the main competition he believes they have at this moment in Argentina is "the disloyalty of politicians who say and do things that leave them totally stupefied."

Therefore, he stressed that they have "to redouble bets that are impossible to redouble".

The Gabriel García Márquez Journalism Festival, which began last Wednesday and delivered the homonymous prizes, is organized by the Foundation for New Ibero-American Journalism (FNPI).

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