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El Pais | Exemplary

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Source: Brasil 24/7.

247 – The debut of the Prisa group’s El Pais in a Portuguese language online version provokes yet another  example of the Stone Age style lobbying of the major Brazilian dailies.

Representatives of the ANJ, the National Association of Newspapers, announced a lawsuit to remove the page from the Web. The reason: the law that limits to 30% the amount of foreign capital that may be invested in domestic media companies. “We see this as a clear affront to constitutional norms,” said  Ricardo Pedreira, executive director of the ANJ. “They also plan to compete for advertising, which implies they are a domestic media outlet. We are looking carefully at the issue.”

Juan Luis Cebrián, publisher of El País, says no constitutional violations exist, because the digital news service will be just that: an online news agency.

But what if there were a way around the 30% limit on foreign capital that would allow El Pais to install its operation in Spain or any other country in the world?

Would it be possible to prevent someone from creating news services in Portuguese outside Brazil? As a matter of fact, the Folha has its own pages of English and Spanish content targeting international readers with an interest in Brazil.

Obviously, an attempt to block access to Portuguese-language news produced by international groups would be impossible, not to mention undemocratic — which goes to show how jealous the major dailies are of their own privileges.