Veja magazine, March 2002: “The Dossier Wars: Politicians and spies have set up a slander industry in Brazil.” Right: And Veja is that industry’s Yoyodyne. Ask Veja about the work that Jairo Martins later did for it (and testified to a congressional committee about).
Mass hysteria and stupidity can make a real difference to a business’ bottom line. … –Rhymer Rigby. “Craze Management.” Management Today. London: Jun 1998. p. 58
Nassif on the Tieppo Red Herring and the Escola Base Moral Panic (Google Documents): Brazilian journalist Luis Nassif has been writing a series on the decay of Brazilian journalism, with special reference to the Editora Abril’s Veja magazine (above).
He also recently rereleased a 2000 book of his on “Brazilian journalism in the 1990s” as a free PDF download. I have been reading it and taking notes. It makes an interesting counterpoint to the strikingly self-serving Notícias do Planalto, by former Veja editor Mario Sergio Conti, which is taking up considerable space on my nightstand lately as well.
It also adds to my notes on the byzantine back-story to the Brasil Telecom-Oi merger — possibly the business story of the year here in Brazil, and a deal fraught with complex political risks that are a bit difficult to get your head around.
Carlos Jereissati of Oi remains controversial for his role in the 1998 privatization of Telebrás, for example, along with Daniel Dantas of Banco Opportunity, whose allegedly promiscuous relationship with Veja editorial management is a principal focus of Nassif’s series.
I make no claims to having unraveled this back-story, mind you. It is merely part of my ongoing personal effort to learn how to boil Brazilian journalism before consuming it, applying two simple maxims I have developed for this purpose:
- Time is money because life is short
- Therefore, the first thing you need to do is separate the signal from the noise, and ignore the noise
Two principal sources of noise in Brazilian journalism, including a certain strain in local business journalism: (1) Lynch mob-inciting “moral panic” and (2) autohagiography by proxy.
It is interesting and useful to note, however, that Nassif’s current project is the continuation of a theme he written extensively about in the past, applying the same “case study” method.
I had not heard much about the derivatives scandal involving the Tieppo brokerage house (which suffered Central Bank intervention in 1980), for example. I am going to add it to my notes.