Para evitar que la opinión pública conozca asuntos como la piscina ilegal de Pedrojota

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El Mundo de Pedrojota trata de silenciar a Periodista Digital

Periodista Digital, Martes, 19 de abril 2005
"El Mundo siempre va a ser un periódico crítico con el poder", le dijo Pedrojota Ramírez al presidente Zapatero mirándole a los ojos durante una entrega de premios en la sede del diario, el jueves pasado, y ante un nutrido auditorio de políticos y empresarios españoles. Y añadió el director de El Mundo a continuación: "Está en nuestra naturaleza, forma parte de nuestra identidad genética".

Exuperancia y Pedrota no se conocían, según él. Según ella, fueron amantes durante años.

Lo que no confesó Pedrojota a ZP es que en la naturaleza y en la identidad genética del director de El Mundo anida un germen mucho más intenso: la incapacidad de asimilar una crítica.

Desde que PERIODISTA DIGITAL desvelara que Pedrojota había falseado la realidad en su libro El Desquite sobre su relación con Exuperancia Rapú --estaba la versión de él frente a la versión de ella--, el director de El Mundo juró en público que no cejaría hasta cerrar este diario online. Durante días, envió un notario a nuestra redacción anunciando multimillonarias querellas que nunca llegaron a materializarse.

Pero ha sido la revelación de la piscina ilegal que posee en su mansión de Mallorca --una violación de la Ley de Costas que, antes de llegar al Congreso de los Diputados, desató una guerra de medios en la prensa mallorquina y un enfrentamiento con Jaume Sastre, quien quiere ser el primero en bañarse en ella este verano-- lo que parece haber llevado finalmente a Pedrojota a idear una forma de silenciarnos: demandarnos por 500 millones de pesetas (3 millones de euros).

En su edición  de papel, a cuatro columnas, con cierto despliegue  y en su sección de Comunicación esto es lo que publica hoy El Mundo

Hace exactamente dos meses y en una prueba evidente de que la reacción de Pedrojota tiene mucho más de rabieta, que de intento de defender legitimos intereses, el sacrosanto New York Times, la biblia de la prensa liberal mundial, se hacia eco del nuevo fenómeno.

En un amplio reportaje, que ocupaba casi una página de su sección Business Media, que al día siguiente reprodujo The International Herald Tribune, el diario neoyorquino describía con minucioso detalle la eclosión de la prensa digital en Europa, con especial atención al caso español.

"Periodista Digital es uno de los diarios digitales más leídos en España, con 115.000 socios registrados", escribia Doreen Carvajal en el NYT. "En un día cualquiera, 4.000 personas se conectan durante el desayuno para leer los titulares sobre los gastos en publicidad del Gobierno socialista, o el último capítulo en la historia de un importante director de un diario que ha extendido su piscina hacia el mar desatando una polémica sobre la legalidad de la ampliación".

Con tanta exactitud como minuciosidad, el reportaje describía la complicada peripecia de la prensa digital en Europa y las maniobras, en el caso español, de parte de la prensa tradicional para cerrar el paso o cercenar sus fuentes de financiación.

 

 


 




The New York Times / Business Media

Europe Teems With Web Dailies That Twit the Mainstream Press

By DOREEN CARVAJAL
International Herald Tribune


Published: February 21, 2005


 

PARIS - The brothers David and Alfonso Rojo are pioneer publishers who monitor the heartbeat of their Spanish digital "newspaper of newspapers" with periodic glances toward tiny numbers on a computer screen in Madrid.

Mornings are the most satisfying for David Rojo, who labels his competitors the "traditional and rotten press." His Web portal, Periodista Digital, is one of the most widely read digital dailies in Spain, with 115,000 registered subscribers.

On a typical day, 4,000 people log on over breakfast to headlines about the Socialist government's spending on publicity, or the latest chapter in the story of a prominent Spanish newspaper editor whose expanded seaside pool has provoked a debate about its legality.

"We have no fear of powerful people - we have no shame," said David Rojo, who started Periodista Digital with a few other journalists and who works out of new offices in Madrid. "We don't have to keep loyalty to anyone."

The Web is a sprawling space that has spawned new breeds of digital press gadflies like the Rojos and an assortment of self-appointed cybermonitors of the conventional news media in Europe.

Across the world, their sharp comments can provoke an array of reactions: amusement, insults, public outrage, blunt legal threats. Yet these Web sites and Web logs, or blogs, are scoured by policy makers and the political elite.

"It's a phenomenon that has grown very much," said Mónica Ridruejo, a former member of the European Parliament who runs her own media consulting firm, Dragonaria, in Madrid. "People like to see the scoops there, and everyone talks about them at lunchtime."

Advertisers are also taking notice, with distinct regional differences. For example, big banks and telecommunication companies post strategic banners on popular Spanish digital press sites, known as confidenciales, for their mix of spicy insider gossip about business, politics and the media. But conventional advertisers steer clear in Italy, where a popular tabloid-style site, Dagospia, feasts on pornographic advertising.

So popular are press gadfly sites that when the international German broadcaster Deutsche Welle organized its first awards for best international blogs in December, journalism, media and technology were the dominant themes of more than 1,000 of the Web logs that were judged. Judges awarded prizes to media blogs in seven languages, like Media Noise (Medienrauschen) in Germany and Ponto Media in Portugal, which is so mainstream in some ways that it is now published in Publico, a popular Lisbon daily.

Konstanin Klein, a Deutsche Welle editor in Berlin who was on the judging panel, said he had favorites but wondered whether the sites were fads that would quickly fade.

"Many of these bloggers claim that blogging is grassroots journalism, while of course the establishment media has a problem with that," Mr. Klein said. "There's more to journalism than just writing things up, such as doing the research and fact-checking, which is not always popular among bloggers"

But fact-checking is what draws more than 300,000 readers a month to Bildblog, a media monitor that was created in the summer of 2004 and dissects the tabloid reports of Bild, Germany's leading daily, which has a paid circulation of more than 3.8 million.

Four journalists with conventional day jobs scan Bild in their off hours to interpret and analyze the tabloid.

Bildblog recently did some shallow digging after Bild promoted its exclusive interview with an aging former American soldier, Herbert Lee Stivers, who says he believes that he may have passed poison to the convicted German war criminal Hermann Goering, who committed suicide at Nuremberg with cyanide. As Bildblog quickly noticed, The Los Angeles Times had reported the news a week earlier.

The site, created in June 2004, draws about 10,000 visitors a day, with many readers sending tips to an e-mail address, said Christoph Schultheis, a freelance journalist and the only founding member of Bildblog who was willing to talk publicly.

"We started doing it because in the daily newspaper business we read Bild anyway," Mr. Schultheis said. "We always found small things we can't put in other newspapers because we can't do it every day. So we decided to create a place to collect them."

Many of Bildblog's readers appear to be Bild employees, Mr. Schultheis said. Bild's management is philosophical about the situation.

"Bildblog is hardly above the threshold of our attention," said Tobias Fröhlich, a spokesman for Bild's parent company, Axel Springer. "We can't help liking it. It is full of silly assertions, pure nonsense and refreshingly biased stories. Moreover, Bildblog boasts the importance of Bild by calling us the undisputed opinion leader and agenda setter in Germany. What more can one ask for?"

The view is darker in Spain, where some senior media executives have attacked the confidenciales that have sprouted alongside Periodista Digital.

Periodista Digital, which contains a mixture of original news and stories compiled from other news outlets, used to e-mail bulletins with links to many of the major confidenciales. But after Alfonso Rojo became editor in chief recently, the links were eliminated. Mr. Rojo, a former war correspondent for El Mundo, said that with a planned expansion, Periodista Digital no longer wanted "to be in the same boat with them."

The confidenciales are a twist on a form of Spanish communication that dates to the last years of Franco's rule and the transition to democracy in the 1980's, said Mara Sánchez González, who is preparing a doctoral thesis on the phenomenon.

The confidential bulletins usually offered information about politics or business to an "exclusive number of paid subscribers that paid a high price for access to information that wasn't available in other types of media," she said. But Web sites give the confidenciales more power and influence because they can be distributed free and quickly to a broader group of people.

El Confidencial, one of about a dozen such sites, has explored the finances of Jesus Polanco, the chairman of Grupo Prisa, which owns El País, the Madrid daily. El Confidencial also has referred to investments made by the media group's chief executive, Juan Luis Cebrian, a former editor of El País.

Mr. Cebrian has been openly disdainful of confidenciales, criticizing their reliance on anonymous rumors and demanding new measures to encourage the digital press to be as "respectable, trustworthy, credible and rigorous as the print press." El Mundo, another Madrid daily, then followed with an editorial, calling some confidenciales a form of trash, "cyberbasura."

After those attacks, the digital publications questioned Mr. Cebrian's motives, arguing that he feared competition, but some conceded that there was room for improvement on ethics.

 



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