«Globo Downplays FIFA Association»


Source: Brasil 24/7

Globo, the official broadcaster of the World Cup, has already brought in R$ 1.4 billion in advertising revenues for event coverage.

Despite this, last week TV Globo issued a recommendation to its journalists to avoid “positive spin” on the event.

In a memo circulated among staff, Globo calls for balanced coverage of the championship and asks that irregularities also be covered. These guidelines appear to apply mainly to the staff of the Jornal Nacional. It is no accident that the network’s flagship news program affords daily coverage of delayed public works and the rising cost of stadiums. Continue reading

Globo and IBOPE | End of an Era?

Source: Tijolaço

Concerned by constantly falling ratings, which not even its long-standing audience measurement provider, IBOPE, is able to disguise, Globo has picked up its marbles and put an end to an initiative by the other networks to bring a new polling institute to Brazil.

The Folha de S. Paulo said today that  Globo, “which stood on the sidelines and watched the German firm GfK try to compete with Ibope in Brazil, has decided to make an approach to the potential new TV audience metrics firm.”

This is curious, given that at the beginning of the year, Globo told the Germans it had no interest in diversifying the monitoring of its audience, a job currently performed by Ibope.

Globo now has the ability to “sweeten” the pricing agreements reached with the German insitute by the other networks, becoming its primary customer, with all the privileges that come with this status.

Recall that a polling institute is a for-profit business, which survives and thrives on its contracts, and not some academic institute.

Thank you, I knew that.

The Folha reported that “GfK plans to start operations in Brazil in December” and that “it promises  to offer a broader sampling of TV audiences that is more rapid and less expensive than that provided by IBOPE.”

Is it also more trustworthy?

Globopar and the Virgins | Material Events


Source: Blog da Cidadania

Between 2001 and 2002,  Globo Comunicações e Participações Ltda. (Globopar) organized a financial scheme to acquire the transmission rights to the World Cup of 2002. The federal tax authority found the scheme to be fraudulent and criminal. The company was punished  with heavy fines and other penalties.

Globopar had acquired a company in the Virgin Islands that was dissolved just one year later. The funds traced to this company by the tax authority were used by the Marinho family holding company to pay for the transmission rights.

The tax authority brought charges against the company, finding that the transaction had resulted in the evasion of the Income Tax for Corporations [IRPJ] and demanding the payment of the principal, together with adjustment for inflation and a fine. In all, the company was presented with a bill for some R$ 600 million.

All of this took place at a time when news of Globo’s financial problems were widely reported in Brazil and around the world.

In October 2002,  Globopar, a shareholder and operator of the NET cable TV network — an asset it would later sell to the Mexican group Telmex — announced it would renegotiate the deadlines for settling the debt generated by its participation in NET.

At the time, market experts viewed the manuever as a sort of  [“blank  settlement”] by Globo.

Continue reading

M&A Deals |Turner and Esporte Interativo


Source: EXAME

São Paulo – The number of M&A transactions in the Brazilian market fell 4% in the second quarter relative to the same periodin 2012. Between April and June, 213 deals were sealed, according to a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

In the first quarter, 397 deals were announced, down 1.5% from the first quarter of 2012. The IT sector deals formed the largest bloc of transactions, with 54 deals done in the second quarter.  The services sector was close behind, with 47 deals, and 40 deals involved the retail sector.

The prospects of the 3rd quarter are most cautious, with a tendency to spend more time and analysis on transactions, possibly affecting the annual total. “We see opportunities for companies and investors that are able to take advantage of the moment to strengthen and consolidate” their businesses,” the  report said.

The magazine goes on to list the deals done.

An interesting deal I missed out on, closed June 10, 2013:

 Turner Broadcasting, the TV division of Time Warner, announced its acquisition of a minority share in the Brazilian channel Esporte Interativo (EI), which operates on the Internet as well as open to air TV broadcasting and cable TV. The deal went for R$ 80 million.

The companies did not reveal the size of the participation acquired. With this deal, Turner gains two seats on the board of directors of EI, which has 7 seats.  The Brazilian channel will continue to function as an independent company. Management decisions will remain with the original controlling group. “Pay TV is growing in Brazil and the country will host major sporting events in the next few years. This is a market we want to invest in,” said Alex González, VP Corporate Development and New Media, Latin America, to Valor.

This is the third investment of this type by Turner. In 2007, the company bought seven channels from the Claxson group of Argentina, for US$ 234 milhões. In 2010, it spent US$ 150 milhões to acquire Chilevisión. The current deal is its first direct investment in a sports channel anywhere in the world.  Turner owns transmission rights to various sports, but content is delivered on its ther channels.

The executive says the purchase of Esporte Interativo will help Turner learn more about the Brazilian market, and especially the open to air broadcasting business, where Turner had no presence until now. He says he believes that the other 13 channels that Turner owns in Brazil will results synergies  between content and publicity with the new channel.

Created in 2007, the Brazilian channel employs 350. Its audience is an estimated 33 million per month on TV and 10 milhões on the  internet.

Prior to the sale to Turner, EI was structured as follows:  A controlling bloc with 52% shared among 9 partners, a 25% bloc of other partners, a bloc of 15% owned by BNDESPar (which invested R$14 million in 2009) and 8% in the hands of the Corcovado Capital investment fund.

Diniz says none of the original partners left the company with the entry of the U.S. company. The deal results in the dilution of shares. [?]

The company has no IPO plans.

Celso Schröder on Veja: Bordering on the Criminal


Source: Viomundo | Sul21

Date: May 28, 2012

Subject: Interview with PENAJ president — reelected in 2013 –Celso Schröder

Background: Evidence that Veja magazine allowed a criminal suspect to use its cover story to attack its accusers, in exchange for political favors

Head: FENAJ Will Not Protect Criminal Journalists

Translation: C. Brayton

A CPI conducted by the National Congress that seeks to investigate the influence of numbers racketeer Carlinhos Cachoeira among public officials has awakened a debate as unexpected as it is necessary: The relation of media with the halls of power,  political  as well as  economic.

The Polícia Federal has identified nearly 200 phone calls between the director of the Veja agency in Brasilia, Policarpo Júnior, and the scheme mounted by the racketeer [Charlie Waterfall]. The publication of these wiretap transcripts show that Cachoeira [Waterfall] often had a determinative say what was covered by the Abril weekly, which allowed itself to be caught up in Cachoeira’s political intrigues with Senator Demóstenes Torres (ex-DEM).

Given these facts, some lawmakers have demanded that Policarpo be summoned to testify in the CPI, even though commission member Odair Cunha (PT-MG) had already rejected a demand for information on the incident.

In the view of Celso Schröder, president of National Federation of Journalists (Fenaj),  the magazine ought to explain what guided its coverage in this episode. “Veja must explain itself to the Brazilian reader. It has to explain how it exercises the role of journalism, given the shallowness of this coverage, its lack of commitment to and irresponsibility regarding the long-standing ethical and technical principles of the profession,” Schroder said.

In this interview with Sul21, Schröder assesses the conduct of the magazine in this and other episodes and defends the development of a regulatory framework for communications.

Sul21 – What can the CPI of do Cachoeira tell us about the Brazilian media?

Celso Schröder – The CPI is showing us that the media is an institution just like any other and must submit itself to public principles to the extent that its raw material — information — is public in nature.  The less public this institution is, the more beholden it becomes to the private interests of its leadership, the  less committed it is to the nature of good journalilsm.  Like any institution, the media is not beyond good and evil, or the precepts of the democratic rule of law and the public interest.  From a politial perspective, a Veja has confused the public with the private. From the journalistic point of view, it has committed an unforgiveable sin: It has established a promiscuous relationship between reporter and source.

It is not just the reporter, but the organization as  a whole and its leadership, who have opted to behave in a technically dubious and ethical unacceptable way.  Every journalist learns during the first week of classes that the source is a part of the story only to the extent that it is treated as a source. The source has his or her own interests, and rather than let these contaminate the information being supplied, the journalist should act as a critical filter. The source, at the same time, provides the reporting with credibility and contributes to the plurality of the story. If it is not filtered, however, it may also contaminate the content.

Sul21 – At what point did Policarpo Júnior and Cachoeira violate the boundaries between reporter and source?

Schroder – Policarpo did not treat Cachoeira as a source. The problem is when a journalist or news organization assigns someone the role of a single, exclusive source, negotiating directly with that source the content and dimensions of the article and, in the case of Veja, committing the magazine to an act driven by partisan politics [and organized crime.]

This is a sin that Veja has been committing for a long time now. The Brazilian opposition  is very fragile. Lacking a strong opposition, the press assumes this role, but in the process completely distorts its mission.  The press is not obliged to assume this role. Society does not view [the world] through partisan lenses, as Veja seems to believe.

But Veja has recently produced some of the most shameful moments in Brazilian journalism.  When an attempt was  made to sneak into the hotel room of former minister José Dirceu (PT) by a Veja reporter, I wrote an article saying that if Watergate was the high point of world journalism, Veja”s behavior was the exact opposite — an anti-Watergate.

Little did I know that we would soon see something even worse. This was not the individual act of a reporter who lacked critical judgment. It was the premeditated and systematic act of a news organization whose chief dispatched his reporter to perform an immoral act that comes dangerously close to being criminal.

Sul21 – Can the same be said of the episode involving Policarpo Júnior and Cachoeira?

Schröder – At the  moment, that story is still coming together. This is a magazine that risks losing the raw material of its existence: its credibility.  It strikes me as suicidal,  especially from the point of a view of a company in the news business — unless Veja is counting on other means of financing, or has already received subsidies from a mechanism not involving credibility and public relations.  We lack concrete facts about its financial condition, but all signs are that at this moment Veja is financially changing  course.  The moral compromise and unscrupulous alignment of the magazine with a particular worldview makes one think of Veja as a publication with its hand out in exchange for services rendered to the political establishment that finances it.

Sul21 – But the magazine has had periods of greater commitment to proper journalism. What changed?

Schroder – Veja has long given signs that it does not care about its journalistic reputation. Veja was fundamental to the redemocratization of Brazil. It was an example to emulate for journalists of various generations and was led by men like Mino Carta. After a certain time, however, the magazine began aligning itself with a particular social group. Obviously, the editors of the magazine have their own opinions and play a conservative role in society.  There was nothing wrong with that so long as it expressed its editorial policy clearly.  Now, it limits its informative journalism to a space of discussion with counterpoints.

I am wracking my brains to translate this last sentence. Perhaps the yellow pages interview provides an example: the interviews often come off as scripted and softballed …

Elementary rules of journalism have been abandoned by this magazine, which was once so important to the transition to democracy and the development of journalism. It has degenerated into a negative example whose failings need to be confronted.

Sul21 – How do you view the possibility of summoning Policarpo Júnior to testify before the CPI?

Schroder – I have seen proposals in that vein from some politicians, such as Senator Ana Amélia Lemos (PP-RS), who says investigating the role played by Policarpo in this incident represents an attack on the press. But journalists are not above the law and cannot be held to be above and beyond republican values.  If he is summoned by the CPI, he has the right not to attend. If he attends, he has the right to claim reporter-source confidentiality.  But the summons in iitself represents no threat.

Veja owes Brazil an explanation. It must explain how it goes about doing journalistic work based on these mere ideological inclinations, this lack of commitment  and irresponsibility with regard to longstanding technical and ethical rules of journalism.   It is essential that we ask these questions. Journalists and academics have an obligation to question these practices.

Sul21 – In this light, would  it not seem valid to summon the president of Abril, Roberto Civita?

Schroder – That seems to me to be a loss of focus … In the CPI, Veja is [only] one of the topics to be covered. The main problem is the corruption that ties Cachoeira to the Brazilian parliament. A statement by Civita would generate a debate that would shift the focus of the CPI awat from its essential tasks.  There is no doubt that Veja praticed poor journalism and should be made to explain itself. The CPI has wiretaps of magazine employees talking with the numbers racketeer.  So let them be summoned. But bringing the chief of Veja’s Brasilia branch in to answer questions is no trivial matter.

Sul21 – Criticisms of Veja tend to be answered with arguments that praise its own, supposedly investigative, journalism while firing back with various charges of corruption [against critics]. The Policarpo-Cachoeira tapes, however, reveal the workings of the machinery behind some of these [character assassination ] attacks.

Schroder – There is a certain sensation in the air that we are living through the most corrupt period in our history.  This is far from being true. Consider our history and see whether or not we have functioning democratic institutions.  The press plays a democratic role by providing oversight of corruption scandals. The problem is that in certain sectors, where these charges are formulated, an absolute value is attributed to the concept of corruption.  In the Veja case, the worst of all was that magazine itself was directly involved.  This was not just bad journalism.  There were dangerous signs of self-enrichment – which need not necessarily be financial in nature. It may come in the form of an exchange of favors, in which Veja furnished Cachoeira, not with a journalistic report, but rather the script of a political campaign.

[It acts as  though] it were the political party that its opposition cannot be. If the press engages in such practices, it returns to standards not seen since the XVIII Century. If this is so, let the magazine change its name and openly assume its political alignment and partisan coverage. These days, as it presents itself as a space for the sharing information, Veja should reflect on the complexity and diversity of the Brazilian public sector and civil society. If it refuses, it is undermining journalism and bordering on a illegality which will have to be investigated.  Fenaj will not protect criminal journalists.

Sul21  – The revelation of this modus operandi practiced at Veja is generating an almost unprecedented debate: More and more, the  media is debating the media. Carta Capital magazine has dedicate several front pages on the topic and Record has broadcast a report. This is common in other countries, but to date has not caught on in Brazil.

Schroder – In the 1980s, when Fenaj proposed a programmatic support for the democratization of communication, we began with the awareness that the democratization of Brazil had yet to catch up with the media.  The Brazilian media system, unlike other institutions, had not undergone democratization.  We have five articles in the Constitution on this topic that have never been implemented. For 30 years we have mounted various initiatives to attempt to structure this debate. The basic logic of regulation exists in every nation in the world.

In Brazil, however, we face resistance from a powerful media that succeeded in electing the first two post-democratization presidents.  Sarney and Collor are among the politicians who owe the Globo network so very much.  Globo allies, advocates and concessionaires have been elected to our congress, such as Antonio Carlos Magalhães, who doubled as Minister of Communications. The media is not just concentrated, in the sense of suffering from monopolies. It is completely bereft of public control.  It is completely convinced that freedom of expression is a right exclusive to media owners. If the Constitution says that freedom of expression belongs to the people, the role of the media is to ensure this right.

Sul21 – How mch progress have you made in this direction since then?

Schroder – We had spent 30 years debating this theme by the time Confecom (National Conference on Communication, December 2009) took place.  Fenaj has successfully implanted the idea that the debate needs to be a public one. The media refuses to report on the debate, however, calling it an attempt to impose censorship.  At first, Confecom had the support of the media companies. I went with representatives of RBS and Globo to speak with federal ministers Helio Costa (Communications),  Tarso Genro (Justice) and Luiz Dulci (presidencial secretary-general) with our proposal for the event.

The companies believed at the time that telephony was threatening their business models.  During Confecom, however, Globo and its many allies attempted once again to sabotage the debate.  Conservatism is in the DNA of Globo. Globo is accustomed to believe that there should be no rules regulating its business. It is accustomed to autocratically  imposing its views and is therefore existentially opposed to any regulation.

At that moment, when Globo walked out on Confecom, it was clear that it is impossible to count on these media owners to support any attempt to construct a public, humanistic, national  communications policy, guided by cultural, democratic and educational principles. All that interests them is the rapid growth of revenues.

Sul21 – The editorial in O Globo defending Veja: is this a sign of collusion among traditional media owners?

Schroder – The principle uniting the two publications is the same adopted by SIP — the Interamerican Press Association: “The best media law is no media law at all.”

Media companies aligned with the idea that they cannot be held legally accountable  do so to protect themselves. Dressed up in the mantle of a freedom of expression convenient to their interests and businesses, they band together to shut the public out.

But journalism is the fruit of a professional activity, not of a business. Journalism is not ad sales. Essentially, journalism is the work of journalists. For this reason, it is the journalist’s obligation to speak out every time the profession is marred by misconduct, as occurred with Veja. It should also be the obligation of media companies, to the extent that they themselves are not involved in this type of conduct.  When the media owner or his agent becomes the accomplice of their source and covers up these practices, they align themselves with criminality.  These companies compete for market share, but mutually protect  “what is considered essential” in their attempt to refute the idea that their work is subject to the public interest, like any other.

Globo | Suicide Bomber?


Source: Brasilianas.Org.

By: Amaury Ribeiro Jr. and Rodrigo Lopes | Hoje em Dia

Translation: C. Brayton

Cases against Globo may resurface in the Congress

Facing death threats, a retired accountant promises to deliver to the Congress, in the next several days, the more than 10,000 original volumes of civil and criminal cases against the Globo network, which has been charged with tax evasion, money laundering and crimes against the financial system.

The documents disappeared from the offices of the tax authority on the eve of the second round in the 2006 national elections.

In response to the charges, Globo issued a press release with a detailed time line of the case from its point of view, professing ignorance: I translate, below. Continue reading

Globo | Shredding the Documents?

Globo's DARF file

Globo’s DARF file, 2002-2013

Source: Revista Fórum.

Brazilian blogger Miguel de Rosário has an interesting project underway: a challenge to Brazil’s leading, privately owned media organization to “publish your DARF” — that is to say, divulge your Documento de Arrecadação de Receitas Federais (Documentation of Federal Tax Revenue).

The case involves Globo’s use of offshore corporations to acquire broadcast rights to the 2002 World Cup without paying taxes on them.

Volunteers pitching in on the project have gained FOIA-like access to the case file and found that it had disappeared from the files of the federal tax authority.  Promoters have set up a Facebook page to organize the blog-in, which has attracted 3,572 RSVPs. Continue reading

The Death of Roberto Civita | The Man Who Would Be Murdoch


Via Brasilianas.Org

Roberto Civita has passed away.

Civita was the key figure in bringing American journalistic standards to Brazil, convincing his father to create news and information magazines.

The first of these was Realidade. According to journalists who worked with him, such as Luiz Fernando Mercadante, the young Civita had sound journalistic sense, and handled the importation of U.S. entertainment models with talent.

Sometime thereafter came Veja, copying the model of a U.S. journalism product.

The editorial standards adopted were based on those of Time. They consisted of treating news as though it were melodrama. On Monday, a planning meeting would be held in which the articles with most appeal to the readers would be selected. The issue was planned in accordance with criteria that made the news more attractive to read. Then the reporters would go out in search of quotations that confirmed the theses predefined and defended by the magazine. Continue reading

The Return of Consciência Humana | Brasil de Fato

cons - entre a adolecencia

The group releases the above LP in 1997, followed by Agonia do Morro (2003)

A seminal human rights-oriented rap crew is back after a decade hiatus. The report is translated from Brasil de Fato.

After ten years without releasing an album, rap group Consciência Humana will appear on a record titled “Strong and Firm,” due for release in the latter half of this year. With the participation of famous guest rappers, the group promises to launch new ideas while maintaing the same principles.

“As long as there is injustice and police violence, people, we are going to be on top of it. On the day that this is accomplished, we will stop speaking out,” says group member WGI.

The rap group Consciência Humana rose to prominence in 1991 with lyrics that focused mainly on violence perpretrated by the State — violence that intensified in the periferal regions of the city after the demise of the civil-military dictatorship of 1964-1985.

It was in this context that the group produced Now is the Time, which portrays murders committed by policemen of ROTA, an elite patrol unit of the state military police.
Listen to a news story with the group’s music as a backdrop.

The song, based on actual facts, mentions the names of military personnel who are quite well known in such outlying neighborhoods as São Mateus (Eastern Zone), the birthplace of the rappers. One of these is Corporal Bruno, who participated in the so-called “Death squad” charged with at least 50 homicides. Paulo Counts Lopes (PTB), the former head of the ROTA a sitting São Paulo city councilman, is also singled out by the record.

Consciência Humana has forged a powerful identification with São Mateus. In the song «Law of the Periphery», the group recites the main problems faced by residents on a daly basis. Group member Preto Aplick said that these songs are important ways to create a sense of belonging to community residents.

“The newspapers have had only negative things to say about São Mateus. Only bad things emerge from the community, as opposed to such postive examples as athletes and performing artists. All of a sudden, here comes a group of performing artists, a rap group calling attention to all our problems. The population of São Mateus trusted our word and this meana so much to us.”

Consciência Humana recently granted an interview to the TV arm of Brazil de Fato … The Brasil de Fato team traveled to the São Paulo neighborhood of Itaquera where the Só Monstros studio, owned by the group, is located. Ten years after its last recorded release, Consciência Humana is readying a new CD, «Firme Forte» — roughly, «Stand Strong and Firm» — that signifies a new era in the group’s career. This year, the group will celebrate 22 years in the business..


With ROTA patroling the streets of the urban peripheries, terror was inevitable. Created in the 1970s with the mission of sustaining the military government in power, the performance of the duties left traumatic souvenirs. The track «Aplick» brings back many powerful memories of that time.
“We lived running away from them. That was when I wrote my first song, «Terror in São Paulo». From then on I was listening to the ideas of people I met in the dark of night. I passed part of my life in the street. Then I ran straight into them. And so we began writing this history. In the middle of recording that song, I met Conte Lopes. He invaded the shanties, he shot my uncle in the mouth. It was from that experience that “The Time has Come” was created.
Conte Lopes counts declares war
After the song made the radio and achieved excellent ratings Consciência HumanaConsciência Human was interviewed by the Popular Notice magazine. The group recounted the persecution and killing carried out by death squads with military police as members.
Popular Notice shone the spotlight on massacres which, according to the residents of São Mateus, were commando by ROTA commanding officer, Counts Lopes. The policeman, however, denied the accusations and at one point threatened the members of group.
In the introduction of another track called «Gray Rat Scumbag», an audio insert appears to be a recording of Conte Lopes, saying «listen here, it is Magnus and Capitan Conte Lopes … this is the Magnão we like to see,” referring to the singers in the group. Aplick says that the persecutions had increased since then.
“In the Popular Notice daily, he asked people to stop singing this song during concerts unless they wanted problems. But people continued singing along with this song. We are not stopping. It was then ROTA started to lean heavily on our shows.. ROTA would arrive at the show and said “You are not going to sing that song.” They took up positions in front of the stage ane were against our performing,” Aplick recalls.
For WGI, another member of Consciência Humana, taking the hard line influenced the political context. . “At the time, Conte Lopes was running for the legislature and we were making sure that he he lost votes among voters in São Mateus.

«40 Questions for Yoani Sánchez»


Opera Mundi relays 40 questions for Yoani Sánchez concerning her current world tour, posed by Salim Lamrani of the Université Paris-Est Marnes-la-Vallé.

I offer you a completely draft-quality, madly dashed off, translation of the item.  Continue reading


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