I’m fairly certain EVERYONE in Foz interviewed Kristinn at some point during his time there. Here’s another interview that appeared over the weekend. There’s an abbreviated version from Público.es [Spanish, English trans.] and the full version on Pascual Serrano’s website [Spanish, English trans.]
Mara Grabert (CNM / CUT) and Kristinn Hrafnsson
The man really should smile more often, particularly when in the northern hemisphere.
Trying a new theme. Looking for something that will allow you to view photos in their original (often larger) size…
Image from Blog do João Gabriel
It’s terrible, the sound, the picture… there are brief moments of “this is ok,” but they are very brief.
If you watch any of it, I would suggest it be the first 29 seconds, when Kristinn strides onto the stage, tries to sit next to the ladies (well, technically, the pony-tailed person seats him there) and Natalia’s like, “no, buddy, you gotta sit over there!” Priceless.
That’s right, kittens, Talking to WikiLeaks and more.
First: A transcript of Kristinn’s talking bits at the 1st World Meeting of Bloggers, 28 October 2011, in Foz de Iguazú, Brazil, translated and transcribed into Spanish by David Vazquez and Ruben Sanchez, translated back to English (for the most part) by my friend and yours, Google Translate:
Iroel Sanchez: Just four hours after that Wikileaks denounced the blockade of financial institutions like Visa, MasterCard and PayPal, the General Assembly of theUN condemned almost unanimously for the twentieth consecutive year the U.S. economic blockade against Cuba, what do viewing it coincidence?
Kristinn Hrafnsson: I always thought is absurd economic blockade against Cuba, still standing after all these years. This situation is totally absurd. And the fact that we still see it during the administration of Obama, showing all the empty promises of Obama, I know it’s a disappointment to many people. He promised to change things, close Guantanamo, end wars and nothing has happened. And think about the simple fact that Obama is supported by the criminals of Wall Street, is a known fact. He will not attack the bankers of the world, or as I call them, bankters. Nothing surprises me.
IS: The traditional 5 / 2 that started the publication of State Department cables made money and legitimacy through the cables leaked by Wikileaks and gradually assumed a very hostile to their organization, what you think about this evolution?
KH: As the great philosopher said: “I know its entrails.” I’ve been a journalist for 20 years, so I know the media organizations can not rely much on them and you can not expect gratitude, it is difficult to work with. So when it comes to their lack of gratitude or even counter… so, they just expose themselves. Part of what we have done in this great project last year and a half is to expose the vulnerability and bad in the media. That’s good too, because we are exposing the public that these guys are not trusted, even The New York Times or The Guardian .
I know the situation in this region, Latin America, it is very difficult to receive criticism for whom we are working in this region and possibly some of those criticisms are right in some way. That only amplifies the importance of what Wikileaks opened.
When you go to countries dominated by industrial interests means they are not going to be the voices of the people, for example, Mercurio is not the voice of the people of Chile, do not know much of Brazil to discuss details about Globo, and so on. I can tell you a pretty little story: I was in Chile in late August and invited me to speak to the association of media publishers in Latin America, and of course, they are hostile to any movement or social improvement and the newspaper that was the host of the event was published in the same home the victory of Pinochet after the coup, then they are not the nicest you’ll meet in the business of journalism. But there, the news editors of major newspapers in Latin America were sitting at a table in a seminar and invited me to speak and answer the question: how can we get the younger generation, how we can bring our content to people.
At the same time, the two-day workshop, young people were fighting the police in downtown Santiago and were being beaten. Then, just two hours and I went to downtown to see what was happening with the students and workers rose up against the government of Piñera and the police. It shows the ridiculous way the media wanted to connect with people, but people were not there, were at the center of the city, fighting the police that the media support. The cover of the day after the Mercurio, when 40 people were arrested, many beaten and killed by a student shot by police the day after all this the main headline in El Mercurio was “492 police officers injured.” I know it’s a difficult situation and is something that we realize, and how we can work with the community in the future and support good practice in journalism, which is the main objective of our struggle. They (social movements) are also fighting for the same principles as us: justice, transparency, fight corruption.
IS: What is the current status of the case against Julian Assange?
KH: We only know that the high court will give a verdict, we have no idea what might be. He may be extradited to Sweden in a few days or more, I think probably he’ll have an opportunity to appeal to the Supreme Court if it wins. This probably will not end…
IS: One of the accusers of Julian Assange worked in the Swedish Embassy in Argentina and was linked, even visited Cuba with the U.S. people used to overthrow the Cuban government, do you have any comments on that?
KH: You ask me to comment on the facts of the case in Sweden and as a court case will not make any comment on these allegations, but I am aware of what you mentioned, but in essence this is something I can not comment…
But in general I think there is enough evidence published on the Internet about this case and presented in open court in London for people to think for themselves.
IS: It is noteworthy that one of the people who have defected from Wikileaks, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, was in Davos, seeking funding. But while Wikileaks is subjected to an economic blockade, this person receives support from those who are not exactly the poor of this world…
KH: Well, my mother told me once that if you could not say anything nice about a person, it was better to say nothing.
IS: What is your vision of the relationship between social struggles in Latin America and the role of the media?
KH: You ask this as if I were a media expert in Latin America and I’m not. But, I’ve been traveling a bit around the region. … My impression of the media environment is that it is very difficult, we are seeing means that in many ways are in full agreement with the power, economic power or political power in many countries of course is the same power, however there are exceptions to this, good means, we work with them, progressive critics. But more important, even in media that are not progressive or our political tastes, we have found individuals who are strong and have been willing to fight in the media.
Anyway, maybe there’s a new solution in the region, I hope the new solution is not necessarily a copy of what we call journalism approach appears to be the “creme de la creme” in the Western world, and say that by working with what is considered the best of Western journalism as The Guardian, The New York Times and El Pais, has not been good enough to understand the true role of journalism is to expose corruption and fight for justice.
I call this one “The Thinker” Photo by Manuel Henríquez Lagarde
Second: Talks between [WikiLeaks] and Visa Europe will take place at the Icelandic embassy in London on Wednesday, 9 November. This is an attempt to come to a solution on the banking blockade that would eliminate the need for legal action. My expectations are not high. For more info see here (Daily Mail), here (MBL.is) and here (Fréttatíminn).
Today has totally been “Get Your Picture Taken with Kristinn Hrafnsson” Day but I’ll throw some of those up later. At the Primeiro Encontro Mundial de Blogueiros in Foz do Iguaçu, Kristinn’s like, a superstar. And rightly so.
Really diggin’ this video at the moment. Interview by the wonderfully named Carloscarlos.
As I was sitting here, trying to think of something to post and poking about on the interwebz (World Bloggers Meeting in Brazil? But he’s not confirmed yet…) I saw the word “Porta-voz” splash across my screen and in some weird moment of serendipity there it was, the confirmation. I mean, I only know of one particular “porta-voz” that I would be receiving alerts about…
Kristinn will be back in Brazil (has he even left South America?) at the end of October to participate in a panel/debate on the role of new media at the 1st Bloggers World Meeting (it sounds better in Portuguese: 1° Encontro Mundial de Blogueiros). And this was the confirmation.
These things hardly seem like news anymore, it’s just what he does now, I guess. :-) But I also find that somewhat comforting, the predictability of it all. I just hope he wears a tie. A red tie. But I know he won’t.