Mexico's 'Narcoblog' gives uncensored view of ongoing drug war
Mass media in Mexico tends to gloss over stories on drug cartels
Mexico's "Narcoblog" is an Internet site full to the brim with horrific imagery about that nation's ongoing drug war. Criminals and innocent bystanders alike are shown beaten, tortured and murdered in explicit photographic detail. Unlike other Internet sites that seek to titillate visitors with gruesome imagery, the Narcoblog attempts to fill in the blanks about Mexico's war with the drug cartels, a subject rarely touched upon in that nation's mass media.
The media in Mexico, particularly television stations are ran by a few top placed individuals. Mexicans are more likely to own a television set than to have access to running water.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The media in Mexico, particularly television stations are ran by a few top placed individuals. Mexicans are more likely to own a television set than to have access to running water. Two Mexican television stations, Televisa and TV Azteca control 94 percent of television entertainment content, according to the Mexican Right to Information Association.
There is clearly a need for the blog's coverage. "The narco blog uses much of the information citizens upload to other social networking sites," Pedro Perez, president of the democratic union of journalists in Tamaulipas says. Tamaulipas is one of the states on the US-Mexico border hardest hit by drug violence. "Organized crime gangs don't use it [social media] to inform, they use it for issuing threats."
Some recent headlines from the site include: "Entire town taken hostage by Gunmen in Chihuahua;" "Eleven year old arrested in Acapulco with AK 47;" "Sinaloa cartel welcomes new police chief with tortured body;" and "Mass narco grave, 60 bodies found, total 148 corpses."
"Individuals journalists are doing the best they can, but in general I don't think the media has done a fair job in covering drug violence," Lucila Vargas, a professor of journalism at the University of North Carolina who studies Mexico's media landscape says. "The media in Mexico are commercial enterprises and their first concern is with the bottom line," she says.
The narco blog has broken some major stories, including a video where a prison warden exposed her alleged system for setting inmates free at night to carry out murders for a drug gang. Security forces arrested the warden after the blog published the video.
Violence linked to Mexico's drug war has claimed more than 36,000 lives since President Felipe Calderon declared all-out war on cartels in December 2006.
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