Can the Internet Be the Great Equalizer?

(Or: Don't Shoot the Blogger)

By Published on .

Laura Martinez Laura Martinez
The response of some Hispanic media and advertising executives to my Big Tent column of last week, Why Can't Hispanic TV Be as Good as Hispanic Advertising? was so intense, that a friend called last night to ask me (jokingly, I hope) if I had anything to do with this week's major executive shuffles at Telemundo, the NBC-owned Spanish-language TV network.

"I wish," I said ... jokingly, of course.

Nobody is that powerful, particularly my humble self. But I have to admit feeling overwhelmed with the response, both online and off. Comments to this column ran the gamut from "kudos" to "leave the industry if you don't like it" (ouch!). But regardless of their content, the responses -- some of them up to three times longer than the original post -- had one thing in common: They were all very passionate and seemed to address very specific concerns among content producers of Spanish-language television, advertising agencies and the media outlets themselves.

Readers logged on from Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Cincinnati and Puerto Rico to engage in an exchange of ideas so rarely seen in traditional media outlets, especially television. "Think about it," a friend told me last night over a glass of wine on a rooftop near Columbia University. "The Internet is letting us watch, read, write -- and do -- what Spanish-language TV never has and never will. ... Isn't that a great thing?"

Is it? I suppose that as a relatively new entrant to the Internet wave (and a hopeless lover of print media) I still find it hard to believe the net is poised to be the Great Equalizer; the place where the so-called minorities (Latinos, gays, African-Americans, Asian-Americans) are getting their fair share of coverage and exposure. But it might very well be. At a recent gathering of multicultural bloggers in New York City, I came to meet a very interesting group of young, talented (and mostly broke) writers hoping to make a difference, trying to cover the issues they think are important and are not getting out of the traditional media.

As one reader put it: "If you cannot help create solutions, then you are part of the problem." I couldn't agree more.

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Read more from Laura daily at Mi Blog Es Tu Blog.
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