The ’emancipation of media’

Latin American advocacy for a New International Information Order in the 1970s

Article appearing in Journal of Global History Vol. 14

  • Author:
  • Vanessa Freije
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Date: 2019
Journal of Global History

Throughout the 1970s, journalists and leaders in the Global South organized around the concept of a New International Information Order (NIIO), premised upon the self-determination of news access and production. Though largely forgotten today, the NIIO constituted a key platform of the ‘Third World’ solidarity movement. Latin America was a prominent site for NIIO activism, and this article examines the regional and local meetings that frequently brought together governing officials, reporters, and academics. Focusing on the shifting expectations of exiled Latin Americans living in Mexico City, the article explores the domestic political factors that eventually attenuated enthusiasm for the NIIO. By the late 1970s, Latin American advocates argued that repressive governments could not be trusted to safeguard socially responsible information initiatives, such as regional wire services. Moreover, they underscored that national democratization was necessary before global inequities could be resolved.