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Archive for the ‘Media Issues’ Category

POLITICO: Latino Lawmakers Slam NBC Meeting

A story published last night by POLITICO reported that members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) expressed serious concerns during a meeting with NBC executives, when NBC News President Deborah Turness used the term “illegals” and said the following: “We love the Hispanic community…Yo hablo español.”

The meeting was intended to lower the tensions between Latino lawmakers and NBC after the CHC (as well as other organizations) had called for “Saturday Night Live” to disinvite Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump from hosting SNL’s November 7 show.

According to POLITICO, some lawmakers were “irate” by the end of the meeting:

‘There was a lot of frustration in the room,’ said Rep. Tony Cárdenas (D-Calif.). ‘You know that [Trump is] an issue on all of our minds and as soon as you start talking about it, you say none of the executives for the entertainment (division) are here. It was a cop out. It was disingenuous.’

Cárdenas argued that if Trump — who has made a series of remarks about Hispanic immigrants, including calling them “rapists” — said similar things about African-Americans or Jews, NBC would not have had him on the show.

The meeting “was about them sitting down with the Hispanic caucus for the sake of saying they met with us,” said Cárdenas, who was a leading voice against the Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger. “Like that is progress.”

The POLITICO story said that NBC “did discuss their diversity efforts during the meeting, noting that the company has added more Hispanic correspondents to ‘NBC Nightly News.’ They also touted news that Jose Diaz-Balart, an MSNBC and Telemundo host, will officially become a rotating anchor on the Saturday edition of “Nightly News” and will be a regular contributor to ‘Meet the Press.; That part was well received, according to a source familiar with the meeting.”

In a written statement sent this morning to Latino USA, America’s Voice Juan Escalante, who organized the online petition campaign that called for NBC to disinvite Trump from SNL, shared his thoughts about the NBC meeting and the POLITICO story:

“Despite the intense backlash that NBC received over Donald Trump’s appearance on Saturday Night Live, it now even clearer that the network has no intentions of adequately representing Latinos—at any level. Latinos and immigrants are members of a vibrant community, who come from all types of backgrounds: and just like anybody else, we ask to be treated with dignity and respect.

It is inexcusable for Deborah Turness, President of NBC News, to call immigrants ‘illegals’—yet another sign of how out of touch and insensitive NBC is towards members of our community.

NBC and its executive just don’t get it! And it’s shameful for them to continue down this path of inadequacy. I am thankful for the members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus for correcting Ms. Turness, and for pressing NBC to take a closer look at its diversity. It seems to me that NBC decided to shred the 500,000 petition signatures that I hand delivered to their studios in New York City, which called on their network to not use ‘SNL’ to satirize Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric.”

Fetaured image via Wikimedia Commons

When You Ask White Actors to Act Whiter

Today Mic released a new video that addresses Latino stereotypes and the problems of casting and misrepresentation in the entertainment business. At one point, actor Arturo Castro decides to lead his own audition to drive home a point about how Latinos are portrayed in mass media.

(h/t Latino Rebels)

Maria Hinojosa on #Nerdland: Prison Reform & Trump

This past weekend, Latino USA anchor and executive producer Maria Hinojosa was part of the panel for MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry show.

In case you missed it, our team curated three clips of Maria’s appearance.

In the first clip, Maria wonders why the issue of immigration detention is not part of the national conversation surrounding prison reform. In the second clip, Maria asks former George W. Bush press secretary Gian-Carlo Peressuti if Donald Trump could win the general election. Peressuti said Trump cannot win a general election, indicating that Trump would lose 40 states in that scenario. The video’s last clip addresses Maria’s thoughts about the death of Corey Jones, who was killed in Miami last week.

Phoenix Anchor Defends Her On-Air Pronunciations

Meet Vanessa Ruiz. A few weeks ago, she joined Phoenix’s Channel 12 News as a new anchor. Before going to Phoenix, Ruiz did the morning show for KNBC in Los Angeles.

According to social media and a Buzzfeed article published earlier today, the bilingual Ruiz was getting criticized for the way she was pronouncing words in Spanish:

This past Monday, Ruiz went on television to explain:

She also wrote an opinion piece where she stated the following: I seized the moment to address some viewer inquiries wondering why I pronounce certain words in Spanish in just that – Spanish. I was raised speaking both languages and for me, certain words just sound better when said in their natural way. It really is that simple. Nothing more, nothing less.”

Now that Ruiz’s video has gotten some attention, many people are tweeting her support. Here are just a few examples:

Although, not everyone has been supportive:

What do you think of what Ruiz had to say? Tweet @LatinoUSA, me @julito77 or add your comments below.

Photo via 12News

Midlife Crisis Pink-slipped

When he was 39 years old, Sal Morales got pinked-slipped from his dream job. He loved his job as anchorman at a Spanish-language station in Los Angeles, but when he lost his job he felt like his life turned upside down. He moved back to his hometown of Miami to start over. Eventually, Sal realized journalism wasn’t dead—just different. Sal tells us his personal journey of learning to land on his feet.

Photo via Sal Morales

From Invisible to Visible: Maria Hinojosa’s Story

For a text version of this talk, visit this link.

Last month, Maria Hinojosa spoke at the first-ever TEDxPennsylvaniaAvenue event, held at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. on June 24. The title of Maria’s talk was “From Invisible to Visible.” Here is the official video, which was published on YouTube yesterday.

What did you think of what Maria had to say? Share your thoughts in the comments section below, or better yet, tweet @Maria_Hinojosa. Many of you had a lot to say about Maria’s talk on June 24, and we would love hear more about the issues Maria raised in this very personal story.

Photo of Maria Hinojosa, taken June 24, 2015, by TEDxPennsylvaniaAvenue.

When Statistics Don’t Tell The Whole Story

Who suffers when media misinterprets statistics? Well…everyone. Ethnifacts’ Guy Garcia and Latino USA’s senior producer, A.C. Valdez,  break it down for you. Learn why it matters that numbers tell the whole truth, and how sins of omission can make for bad journalism.



guygarcia 2Guy Garcia is a former Time magazine staff writer and contributor to the New York Times, and the author of The New Mainstream: How the Multicultural Consumer is Transforming American Business and other books.






ACValdezA.C. Valdez is Latino USA’s Senior Producer. A.C. Valdez comes to Latino USA by way of public radio shows like America Abroad, The Diane Rehm Show, WAMU-FM’s The Kojo Nnamdi Show, and Tell Me More. He’s worked with reporters from around the world, coordinated performances with groups like The Noisettes, and done in-depth work on the U.S. military’s counterinsurgency strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan. A native of Washington, D.C., A.C. Is a graduate of Emerson College.




Photo by Flickr user ansik

Scoring TV Networks On Diversity

The season finales have aired. Summer shows are about to return. This week, producer Daisy Rosario gives the big networks grades. What show does diversity right? What network has the “sneakiest” use of Latinos? And what network looks like they have doubled down on diversity for next season? What grades would you give these networks? And what shows should we be watching? Tweet at us @LatinoUSA or hit us up on Facebook and let us know.



Daisy-Rosario-headshot-150x150Daisy Rosario is a producer, reporter and comedian, but to keep it simple she’d tell you she’s good with words. She’s a proud Brooklyn native who works with The Moth and Upright Citizens Brigade. She recently interned with WNYC’s Radiolab. A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Daisy has held a number of odd jobs in the name of curiosity. She longs to be the quasi-love child of Manny Pacquiao, Theodore Roosevelt, and Carl Sagan, but what do you do with that?





Buzzfeed’s Big Idea

The media landscape is one still dominated by white men, but perhaps BuzzFeed is a glimpse into a more colorful future? The editor of the newly launhced BuzzFeed Ideas, Ayesha Siddiqi, talks with host Maria Hinojosa about the need for women of color to own their own narratives, squaring off with ABC Family and why Kanye West is a role model.



Ayesha Siddiqi is the editor of Buzzfeed Ideas.






Photo courtesy of Wikimedia user Jonathan McIntosh

Shut Up And Listen: Lessons From #CancelColbert

On Thursday, March 27, Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report tweeted something it shouldn’t have — the punchline to a joke from the night before. That tweet sparked the trending #CancelColbert hashtag, and a debate that quickly erupted into an explosive argument about race, satire, and who is allowed to be offended by what. Latino USA producers Michael Simon Johnson and Daisy Rosario, along with sportswriter Tomas Ríos, sat down to talk about what happened, how it happened, and what, if anything, can be learned from the experience.

TomasRiosTomas Ríos is a paid-lance writer who has contributed to Deadspin, Sports on Earth, Slate, Pacific Standard and The Classical. He tweets @TheTomasRios







Micheal_JohnsonMichael Simon Johnson is a Pittsburgh native who spent most of his childhood making music and groaning when his parents put on NPR in the car. So naturally he graduated from Emerson College with a degree in Sound Design, moved to New York and made his way into public radio. As an engineer, he has worked for Afropop Worldwide, WNYC’s Radio Rookies, and Jazz at Lincoln Center. He commits much of his time to working on radio and multimedia projects but can often be found playing the bass, rock climbing, and traveling.




Daisy-Rosario-headshot-150x150Daisy Rosario is a comedian, writer and producer of things from radio stories to live events. Recently graduated from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, she also works with The Moth and the Upright CitizensBrigade Theatre. Daisy has interned at Radiolab, taken a play she directed to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and is an obsessive baseball fan. Her story “Child of Trouble,” was featured on the Peabody award-winning Moth Radio Hour. She holds a BFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.




Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images



Are U.S. Media Ignoring Venezuela?

Venezuelan protests between the Chavista government and the opposition have killed more than thirty people. The Venezuelan government has imprisoned generals suspecting a coup and more opposition leaders may face prosecution. But here in the U.S., Senator Marco Rubio, Jose Antonio Vargas and Latino journalists are calling out the lack of coverage of Venezuela. Some even compare it to the crisis in Ukraine.

Latino USA did some research with help from the NPR library. Our brief media survey on databases like Nexis and Factiva showed a lot more coverage for Ukraine before the Ukrainian crisis became international with the annexation of Crimea by Russia. We also found that as the protests in Venezuela escalated, the amount of coverage has remained the same. Our survey is not comprehensive and didn’t take type of coverage into account as a measurement.

We ask media experts and other journalists what they believe is behind the difference in coverage. We also ask news organizations about how they decide on what international news to cover. Also, we look at the ways the digital age may be changing the way we think of international news.
















Sources: Factiva and Nexis, keywords: “Venezuela” and “Ukraine”, with “protests,” “crisis,” and/or “presidents.”


Photo by Elyxandro Cegarra/AFP/Getty Images



EES It OKAY? Latinos On TV

Latino reality show lovers had a lot to look forward to at the beginning of this TV season – Juan Pablo, raised in Venezuela, was going to be El Bachelor and Shakira was returning to the popular singing competition, The Voice. But after “Ees Ok” became Juan Pablo’s catch phrase and one too many “her hips don’t lie” jokes, can we really consider this a new beginning for Latinos on television?


headshotAntonia Cereijido is a senior at Medill, Northwestern University’s School of Journalism. She has interned at Latino USA, Endgame Entertainment, and MiTu Networks. She is also an entertainment blogger for the Huffington Post.

Fusion’s Alicia Menendez Learns The Ropes

When you launch a new project, the learning curve is steep.

Alicia Menendez knows this first hand.

3 months ago, she had her first night as Fusion’s evening news anchor.



Fusion is an news, pop culture and satire TV network aimed at English-speaking millennials, including those of a Hispanic background.

Alicia Menendez Tonight employs a sassy, irreverent tone to cover the news stories not traditionally covered in evening broadcasts.

“My generation is really redefining what we mean by news,” says Menendez, “We mean news, the headlines but also news in the context of conversations that we’re having every day.”

 She talks to Latino USA host Maria Hinojosa about how Fusion is trying to reach the millennial audience and about the lessons she’s learned 90 days into her tenure.



Alicia Menendez_1844 By Gio Alma 2013 Ready Alicia Menendez is Fusion’s evening news anchor.

40 Years Of Bilingual Radio

40 years ago, San Francisco based KBBF was the first station in the country to hit the airwaves in both English and Spanish. Today, 95% of Latinos across the nation tune into the radio at least once a week. We explore this tiny station’s history and how it continues to serve a growing and diverse audience.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user Nite_Owl


Crosscurrents Live 2012 No Watermark-127Martina Castro is the Managing Editor of KALW News.  She started her career in journalism as an intern at National Public Radio in Washington D.C., and worked with NPR as a producer, trainer, and freelancer before coming to KALW.  Martina’s independent work has been featured nationally on NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Day to Day, as well as the online radio magazine The [Un]Observed.


Blogging from Cuba

Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo is a Cuban blogger, activist, and editor of Cuba’s first digital magazine Voces. Maria Hinojosa talks to Pardo Lazo about blogging and writing in Cuba, the democratic potential of the Internet, and Pardo Lazo’s impressions during his first trip to the United States.

00570032Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo was born in Havana. He graduated with a degree in biochemistry and later became a writer, photographer and blogger. He founded the independent literary digital magazine Voces, Cuba’s first digital magazine. He is the other of numerous works of short fiction and manages the blog Lunes de Post-Revolución (in English – Post Revolution Mondays) as well as his photoblog Boring Home Utopics.


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