Chile Political Orientation
MBFC’s Country Freedom Rating: 77.05 – Mostly Free
World Press Freedom Rank: Chile 83/180
Freedom House reports, “Media ownership is highly concentrated.” Furthermore, Reporters without Borders ranked Chile 83/180 countries in its annual press freedom index, drawing attention to rising attacks against journalists.
Media Ownership and Government Analysis
The corporate concentration of media is a serious problem in Chile. Diversity amongst large media outlets is only an illusion, as only a few different entities own them. Such as; Conservative Media Tycoon Agustín Edwards Family owns El Mercurio and tabloid LUN; daily La Segunda; and over 20 regional newspapers, including HoyxHoy; and radio stations Radio Universo and Digital FM. Meanwhile, Álvaro Saieh owns GrupoCopesa (CorpGroup), the daily La Cuarta, daily La Tercera, Pulso, and several magazine titles. Copesa has a financial interest in other areas of the economy, such as banking and real estate. Bloomberg reports Corp Group Banking SA filed for bankruptcy in 2021.
Another wealthy family that owns a media conglomerate is the Luksić family, which owns Grupo Luksic(Quiñenco). They also own Chile’s most prominent businesses in industries including financial sectors, energy, mining, and beverages. Through Medios Investments Ltd., they own Channel 13, Rec TV, and radio stations.
The Government owns La Nacion TV and the La Nacion newspaper. Further, the Government uses a defamation law to intimidate journalists. Under the law, a person can face a 5-year prison sentence for libel or slander.
In summary, the concentration of media ownership in the hands of a few wealthy families reduces the diversity of viewpoints limiting media pluralism in Chile. Finally, the Government uses the countries’ defamation laws to intimidate journalists resulting in self-censorship to avoid penalties.
Last Updated on May 12, 2023 by Media Bias Fact Check
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