Ecuador's Suppressed Journalism

Ecuador's Suppressed Journalism

The heavy censorship and communcations laws that jeopardize Ecuador's freedom of speech.
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President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, has been the continuous president of Ecuador for three consecutive terms and has let the country through a progressive change which improved the country's economy.

But throughout his time in office, President Correa has implemented a set of laws targeting the country’s communication acts and challenging the ways Ecuadorian Journalist can talk about the government and its leader President Correa.

Back on 2011 reporters of “El Universo” Carlos Pérez, César Pérez, Nicolás Pérez- and ex editor Emilio Palacio were sentenced to 3 years in prison plus a fine of $10 million dollars, all due to their apparent misleading coverage of the Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa during a tense police revolt back in 2010.


A set of laws created by President Correa that go by the name of "Ley Organica De Comunicaciones" have sparked controversy due to their power to limit freedom of speech in Ecuador. As stated in Article 26 of the “Ley Orgánica de Comunicaciones”

“Art. 26.- Linchamiento mediático.- Queda prohibida la difusión de información que, de manera directa o a través de terceros, sea producida de forma concertada y publicada reiterativamente a través de uno o más medios de comunicación con el propósito de desprestigiar a una persona natural o jurídica o reducir su credibilidad pública. La Superintendencia de la Información y Comunicación podrá disponer, previa la calificación de la pertinencia del reclamo, las siguientes medidas administrativas”

Translation: “dissemination of information , directly or through third parties is prohibited , whether produced in concert and published repetitively through one or more media for the purpose of discrediting a natural or legal person or reduce its public credibility. The Superintendency of Information and Communication may have upon the rating of the relevance of the claim, the following administrative measures.”

Article 26 in fact protects the values and interests of important figures inside the Ecuadorian GOV as they cannot be accused by any Ecuadorian media due to the media’s fear of repercussion. As witness with the case of “El Universo” and the multimillion dollar fine, following up to this case Article 20 was implemented to further target and subjugate journalist who have to pledge responsibility for the content they create.

"Art. 20.- further Responsibility Media
comunicación.- There will be room for further responsibility
the media, in the administrative,
civil and criminal when broadcasting content are
expressly assumed by the middle or not of
explicitly attributed to another person.
Comments made at the foot of publications
electronic on the websites of media
communication will be legally constituted
personal responsibility of those who made unless
means omitted meet one of the following:
Design and implement self-regulatory mechanisms
to avoid publication, and allow the complaint and
removal of content that adversely affects the rights
enshrined in the Constitution and the law.
The media can only play
social networking messages when the issuer of such
message is properly identified; If means
communication does not fulfill this obligation, will have the
same responsibility for the content established
published on its website that are not already assigned
explicitly to another person."




















In addition the President has relied in using propaganda to improve his images towards the Ecuadorian people and stages weekly reports often around the poorest regions of the country, which he acknowledges are the main contributors to his campaign. While addressing national issues, the President is well known to use these opportunities to criticize anyone who opposes him and his campaign. Similar tactics used by United Socialist Party of Venezuela leader Nicolas Maduro.

Mentioned as “one of Latin America’s most sensitive presidents” by The Huffington Post. President Rafael Correa earned a reputation for being in constant twitter wars with anyone he dislikes, this includes a teenager of the age of 18 who mocked and threatened the President through Twitter and later got called out by the president himself during Correa’s weekly report according to multiple sources. Comedian and talk show host John Oliver replied to the odd case between the president and internet trolls by roasting the President himself and saying,

“Oh, 18, so young, so immature — unlike me the 51-year-old head of state who is currently attacking him in public,” Oliver said of Correa. “To be fair to him, that 18-year-old had expressed a hope that Correa would die, but Correa should have people that take care of that sort of thing for him, rather than spending — like he did — nearly 15 minutes calling out online trolls.”

The sensitivity that surrounds President Correa has indicated why the country’s communications law is in place. To fine newspapers, censor self-editors and have the leverage to sue any journalist who the president sees as a threat to his integrity.

Cover Image Credit: Luis Apolo

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I'd Rather Be Single Than Settle – Here Is Why Being Picky Is Okay

They're on their best behavior when you're dating.
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Dating nowadays described in one word: annoying.

What's even more annoying? when people tell you that you're being too "picky" when it comes to dating. Yes, from an outside perspective sometimes that's exactly what it looks like; however, when looking at it from my perspective it all makes sense.

I've heard it all:

"He was cute, why didn't you like him?"

"You didn't even give him a chance!"

"You pay too much attention to the little things!"

What people don't understand is that it's OKAY to be picky when it comes to guys. For some reason, girls in college freak out and think they're supposed to have a boyfriend by now, be engaged by the time they graduate, etc. It's all a little ridiculous.

However, I refuse to put myself on a time table such as this due to the fact that these girls who feel this way are left with no choice but to overlook the things in guys that they shouldn't be overlooking, they're settling and this is something that I refuse to do.

So this leaves the big question: What am I waiting for?

Well, I'm waiting for a guy who...

1. Wants to know my friends.

Blessed doesn't even begin to describe how lucky I am to have the friends that I do.

I want a guy who can hang out with my friends. If a guy makes an effort to impress your friends then that says a lot about him and how he feels about you. This not only shows that he cares about you but he cares about the people in your life as well.

Someone should be happy to see you happy and your friends contribute to that happiness, therefore, they should be nothing more than supportive and caring towards you and your friendships.

2. Actually, cares to get to know me.

Although this is a very broad statement, this is the most important one. A guy should want to know all about you. He should want to know your favorite movie, favorite ice cream flavor, favorite Netflix series, etc. Often, (the guys I get stuck on dates with) love to talk about themselves: they would rather tell you about what workout they did yesterday, what their job is, and what they like to do rather than get to know you.

This is something easy to spot on the first date, so although they may be "cute," you should probably drop them if you leave your date and can recite everything about their life since the day they were born, yet they didn't catch what your last name was.

3. How they talk about other women.

It does not matter who they're talking about, if they call their ex-girlfriend crazy we all know she probably isn't and if she is it's probably their fault.

If they talk bad about their mom, let's be honest, if they're disrespecting their mother they're not going to respect you either. If they mention a girl's physical appearances when describing them. For example, "yeah, I think our waitress is that blonde chick with the big boobs"

Well if that doesn't hint they're a complete f* boy then I don't know what else to tell you. And most importantly calling other women "bitches" that's just disrespectful.

Needless to say, if his conversations are similar to ones you'd hear in a frat house, ditch him.

4. Phone etiquette.

If he can't put his phone down long enough to take you to dinner then he doesn't deserve for you to be sitting across from him.

If a guy is serious about you he's going to give you his undivided attention and he's going to do whatever it takes to impress you and checking Snapchat on a date is not impressive. Also, notice if his phone is facedown, then there's most likely a reason for it.

He doesn't trust who or what could pop up on there and he clearly doesn't want you seeing. Although I'm not particularly interested in what's popping up on their phones, putting them face down says more about the guy than you think it does.

To reiterate, it's okay to be picky ladies, you're young, there's no rush.

Remember these tips next time you're on a date or seeing someone, and keep in mind: they're on their best behavior when you're dating. Then ask yourself, what will they be like when they're comfortable? Years down the road? Is this what I really want? If you ask yourself these questions you might be down the same road I have stumbled upon, being too picky.. and that's better than settling.

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Pride? Pride.

Who are we? Why are we proud?

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This past week, I was called a faggot by someone close to me and by note, of all ways. The shock rolled through my body like thunder across barren plains and I was stuck paralyzed in place, frozen, unlike the melting ice caps. My chest suddenly felt tight, my hearing became dim, and my mind went blank except for one all-encompassing and constant word. Finally, after having thawed, my rage bubbled forward like divine retribution and I stood poised and ready to curse the name of the offending person. My tongue lashed the air into a frenzy, and I was angry until I let myself break and weep twice. Later, I began to question not sexualities or words used to express (or disparage) them, but my own embodiment of them.

For members of the queer community, there are several unspoken and vital rules that come into play in many situations, mainly for you to not be assaulted or worse (and it's all too often worse). Make sure your movements are measured and fit within the realm of possible heterosexuality. Keep your music low and let no one hear who you listen to. Avoid every shred of anything stereotypically gay or feminine like the plague. Tell the truth without details when you can and tell half-truths with real details if you must. And above all, learn how to clear your search history. At twenty, I remember my days of teaching my puberty-stricken body the lessons I thought no one else was learning. Over time I learned the more subtle and more important lessons of what exactly gay culture is. Now a man with a head and social media accounts full of gay indicators, I find myself wondering both what it all means and more importantly, does it even matter?

To the question of whether it matters, the answer is naturally yes and no (and no, that's not my answer because I'm a Gemini). The month of June has the pleasure of being the time of year when the LGBT+ community embraces the hateful rhetoric and indulges in one of the deadly sins. Pride. Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, the figures at the head of the gay liberation movement, fought for something larger than themselves and as with the rest of the LGBT+ community, Pride is more than a parade of muscular white men dancing in their underwear. It's a time of reflection, of mourning, of celebration, of course, and most importantly, of hope. Pride is a time to look back at how far we've come and realize that there is still a far way to go.

This year marks fifty years since the Stonewall Riots and the gay liberation movement launched onto the world stage, thus making the learning and embracing of gay culture that much more important. The waves of queer people that come after the AIDS crisis has been given the task of rebuilding and redefining. The AIDS crisis was more than just that. It was Death itself stalking through the community with the help of Regan doing nothing. It was going out with friends and your circle shrinking faster than you can try or even care to replenish. Where do you go after the apocalypse? The LGBT+ community was a world shut off from access by a touch of death and now on the other side, we must weave in as much life as we can.

But we can't freeze and dwell of this forever. It matters because that's where we came from, but it doesn't matter because that's not where we are anymore. We're in a time of rebirth and spring. The LGBT+ community can forge a new identity where the AIDS crisis is not the defining feature, rather a defining feature to be immortalized, mourned, and moved on from.

And to the question of what does it all mean? Well, it means that I'm gay and that I've learned the central lesson that all queer people should learn in middle school. It's called Pride for a reason. We have to shoulder the weight of it all and still hold our head high and we should. Pride is the LGBT+ community turning lemons into lemon squares and limoncello. The lemon squares are funeral cakes meant to mourn and be a familiar reminder of what passed, but the limoncello is the extravagant and intoxicating celebration of what is to come. This year I choose to combine the two and get drunk off funeral cakes. Something tells me that those who came before would've wanted me to celebrate.

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