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Blog   |   Ireland, Mexico

An uncanny alliance to benefit CPJ's assistance program

Pete Hamill was among the journalists who spoke to the crowd; a mariachi band and Celtic performers took turns on stage. (James Higgins)

While a first glance, The Irish-Mexican Alliance might seem like an unorthodox partnership, last night's poetry and music fundraising event for CPJ at Connolly's Pub near Times Square proved otherwise. 

Blog   |   Mexico

Armando Rodríguez's murder: Two years, no justice

Rodríguez (AP)

Two years have passed since the killing of El Diario journalist José Armando Rodríguez Carreón, known to his friends as "El Choco," and no legal process has begun to shed light on the crime committed on November 13, 2008. Faced with the reality of impunity, his widow, Blanca Martínez, asserted that her only hope lies in God. 

November 17, 2010 5:23 PM ET

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Blog   |   Mexico

Alfredo Corchado: 'Trust No One'

On Monday, the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington hosted a panel discussion on the press freedom crisis in Mexico. Carlos Lauría and I spoke about CPJ report "Silence or Death in the Mexican Press" and the results of our meeting in September with President Felipe Calderón. Dolía Estevez described the event in a blog she posted yesterday. I was struck by the remarks made by Dallas Morning News correspondent Alfredo Corchado, one of Mexico's bravest and best reporters. Excerpts from his prepared remarks are below:

November 11, 2010 11:02 AM ET

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Blog   |   Mexico

Mexico no different than Iraq, reporters tell Wilson Center

On Monday, before a large audience of government officials, representatives of NGOs, reporters, and students, CPJ's senior program coordinator for the Americas, Carlos Lauría, said that the level of crime violence, and corruption facing the press in Mexico, where more than 30 journalists have been murdered or have gone missing since Felipe Calderón took office in December of 2006, is destroying the country's journalism and forcing many reporters into self-censorship or exile. "Not only the drug trade and corruption are not being covered, but basic daily sensitive issues are being ignored as well," he said. "Self-censorship is pervasive." 

Blog   |   Mexico

Program to protect reporters raises doubts in Mexico

Journalists in Mexico protest violence against the media. They say they do not trust the government to protect them anymore. (AP/Guillermo Arias)

The Mexican government is currently putting together a program, it says, that will help reduce one of the most brutal problems for journalists: their lack of protection from death threats from drug cartels, government officials, and ordinary criminals. Senior officials at the Ministry of Interior told CPJ that they expect to offer at-risk journalists a range of protective measures, including bodyguards, armored cars and/or stipends to relocate to other parts of the country.

November 9, 2010 3:44 PM ET

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Blog   |   Mexico, USA

Brad Will's mother: 'No movement' in case four years on

AP

Last week marked the fourth anniversary of the murder of Brad Will, a 36-year-old American activist and journalist who was shot while covering anti-government protests in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. His murderers remain at large. 

November 5, 2010 10:47 AM ET

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Blog   |   Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Internet, Mexico, Venezuela

Online freedom of expression in Latin America

On his blog, El Oso, David Sasaki has just finished up the third and last part in his series, "Internet Censorship and Freedom of Expression in Latin America." It's a brilliant overview of current political and social pressures on free speech and online reporting in the region.

Some key observations:

  • Direct governmental censorship in Latin America remains largely non-existent. Even occasional "murky," anecdotal evidence is mostly confined to Cuba and perhaps Venezuela. Sasaki does a great job of collating what's been rumored so far. The OpenNet Initiative has said it will shortly publish updated research.

  • Litigation over content is the most widespread threat to free expression online across the region. As CPJ has reported for many years, criminal defamation laws and overbroad judicial decisions affect independent journalism in many Latin American countries. The large numbers of ongoing cases against individual Net users and their hosting services show that this risk has not diminished online.

  • Brazil and Chile are leading the way in attempts to create Internet-era regulation, with broad participation. Other countries could learn a lot from watching how this new body of law develops, despite occasional missteps (or perhaps because of them).

The above will not surprise close watchers of the Latin American Internet, and it certainly fits with CPJ's own observations there. The real meat of this article, though, lies in the examples. From decades old videos of famous censored Argentine satire to a brief glimpse of the world of Mexican botnets (a collection of hijacked computers used remotely by criminals), it's a compelling and informative read. Check out part one, an overview of the idea of Internet regulation; part two, a survey of intermediary liability cases in the region; and part three, which offers a closer look at direct Net censorship in Latin America, as well as brief glances at Net neutrality, privacy and cybercrime.

November 2, 2010 3:12 PM ET

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Blog   |   CPJ, Mexico

At PEN, CPJ event, Mexico press crisis examined

The line of people at the stairs leading down to the Great Hall at Cooper Union in lower Manhattan formed early and turned into an audience of 500. They came to hear prominent Mexican and U.S. writers and free expression advocates assess, denounce, and seek solutions to the wave of violence wracking Mexican media.

October 21, 2010 12:50 PM ET

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Blog   |   CPJ, Mexico

PEN, CPJ call attention to Mexico press crisis

"Tell them not to kill me!" pleads a man in the opening lines of a fascinating tale of violence with the same title by one of Mexico's most esteemed writers, Juan Rulfo. It is, sadly, the same cry for help that Mexican journalists are sending out to the world today. On Tuesday, October 19, prominent writers and journalists from Mexico and the United States will gather in New York for "State of Emergency: Censorship by Bullet in Mexico," an evening of readings and discussions about the threats facing members of the Mexican press who report on drug-related violence.

October 14, 2010 3:30 PM ET

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Blog   |   Mexico

Mission Journal: Calderón sees a national threat

Journalists protest anti-press violence in Tijuana. (AP/Guillermo Arias)

Mexican President Felipe Calderón Hinojosa had a message to deliver and it wasn't about press freedom. After hearing the concerns presented by a joint delegation from CPJ and the Miami-based Inter American Press Association last week, the president wanted us to know something: He didn't go looking for a fight against the drug cartels.

September 26, 2010 5:32 PM ET

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