What the ABC/Univision joint news venture really means
posted at 10:00 am on May 8, 2012 by Jorge Bonilla
ABC and Univision announced a joint venture yesterday, the contents of which should serve as a wake-up call to conservatives, and should sound an alarm to conservative media outlets. According to ABC News:
ABC News announced this morning that it plans to join forces with Univision News to create a multiplatform news, lifestyle and information programming service aimed at U.S. Hispanics.
Both organizations promised in a statement to provide “uncompromising coverage of current events with a unique perspective” with the around-the-clock, English-language television network and digital platform. Both will cater to the country’s more than 50 million Hispanics with programming focused on news, lifestyle and culture. The television network will be staffed by journalists from ABC News and Univision News.
A website, mobile and social media content are expected to debut this summer. The yet-to-be-named television channel is expected to launch in 2013. Editorial coverage will focus on the issues most relevant for U.S. Hispanics, including the economy, jobs, health care, immigration, education, politics, entertainment, health and wellness and more.
This is huge, and a win-win for both networks. Both networks tap into the nation’s fastest growing demographic in a complimentary manner that enhances each company’s business models.
ABC gets its own Spanish-language news operation, thus catching up with NBC/Telemundo/NBC Latino. Furthermore, ABC gets to build upon its successes within English-language dominant Hispanics, such as Ugly Betty, the casting of telenovela stud William Levy on this season’s Dancing With The Stars, and the global success of ESPN Deportes.
Despite all that, Univision is the big winner here. Until now, Univision’s growth and sustainability has depended (almost) exclusively on a steady influx of non-English speaking, non-assimilated, non-cultured immigrants. Today, Univision has set itself up for the demographic long game. By partnering with ABC, Univision is able to hold onto the children of their core viewers (who faithfully tune in to Sábado Gigante, and the telenovelas, and Jorge Ramos’ newscasts). Essentially, there is now no outgrowing Univision.
We’ve always known that the mainstream media is playing the Institutional Left’s long game, and they have now secured a venue with which to mainstream the immigration grievance narratives that are the backbone of Univision News (lest anyone have lingering doubts, I give you Exhibits A and B).
Fox Latino is not the answer, as it bears a closer resemblance to People En Español than to an actual news outfit. MundoFox is still a ways away, and still a question mark…especially with regard to its news division.
Thus, the question needs to be asked: How serious are conservative media outlets when it comes to countering the memes and narratives of Hispanic mainstream media? I can’t even begin to frame the effect of an unabated Univision/ABC venture on the electoral landscape…not just in 2012, but in 2016, and beyond.
It’s time to wake up. Clear Channel, Salem, TRN, NewsCorp…I’m looking right at you. All of you.
Crossposted at El Tercer Riel (The Third Rail). You can follow me on twitter @BonillaJL.