Página/12 is a newspaper published in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was founded on May 25, 1987, by journalist Jorge Lanata in association with writer Osvaldo Soriano and Alberto Elizalde Leal. His first president was businessman Fernando Sokolowicz, in 1994 Grupo Clarín supposedly owned a share; Lanata claimed in a 2007 interview that businessman Rudy Ulloa (a businessman close to former President Néstor Kirchner) also owned a share. Since 2016 the newspaper is property of Grupo Octubre, an Argentine multimedia company created and directed by Víctor Santa María, president of the Justicialist Party in the Buenos Aires city.
The front page of Página/12 April 12, 2011.
Osvaldo Soriano, Alberto Elizalde Leal
|Publisher||Editorial La Página S.A.|
|Editor-in-chief||Víctor Santa María|
José Pablo Feinmann
|Founded||26 May 1987|
|Headquarters||Buenos Aires, Argentina|
The name of the paper comes from the fact that its preliminary editions as it was being developed had 12 pages. The name had already been chosen, thus the publishers opted to reserve the twelfth page for reports or news stories of central importance. Another version holds that the paper was going to be called "Reporter" but when the owners went to register the name, they were told that the name was taken. They then decided to count the number of pages in order to choose a name.
With a stark design, a daily circulation of 10,000 copies and a size of 16 pages that doubled within a few weeks, the paper was a sharp contrast with other Argentinian newspapers due to its progressive orientation, its in-depth articles (each one occupying more than a page on average) and rich analysis. Inspired by the French paper Libération, its style contrasted with the conventional Argentine press, where a higher priority was placed on showcasing a wide variety of information as opposed to more probing reports.
The editorial staff included journalists such as Horacio Verbitsky, writers Tomás Eloy Martínez, Osvaldo Soriano and José María Pasquini Durán, Juan Gelman, Eduardo Galeano, Osvaldo Bayer, Rodrigo Fresán, Alan Pauls, Juan Forn, Eduardo Berti, Ernesto Tenembaum, Homero Alsina Thevenet, José Pablo Feinmann, Juan Sasturain Miguel Repiso (Rep) who since the release of first edition has been in charge of illustrating the back cover and various sections of the paper, have been regular contributors. The first manager was Jorge Lanata, later replaced by Ernesto Tiffenberg.
The newspaper had a close relation with the governments of Néstor and Cristina Kirchner, and received huge amounts of state advertising as a result. Cristina Kirchner made a speech during the 25th anniversary of the foundation of the newspaper in 2012, praising the editorial line, journalists and authorities. She said that "there is a true cultural battle. We'll keep fighting in all fields, and Página/12 too. They will only defeat us when we cease to fight". She made reference to a conspiracy theory, frequent in the Relato K, that considers that the Kirchners were attacked by a cabal of hegemonic groups.
Mauricio Macri was elected president in 2015, ending the Kirchnerite regime, and the advertising scheme that benefited Página/12. The newspaper had to seek private advertising as a result. The newspaper was also bought by Víctor Santa María, president of the Justicialist Party in the Buenos Aires city, and president of the Suterh union. Santa María had used the union funding to start the "Octubre" group, which also includes the newspaper Diario Z, the magazines Caras y Caretas and Planeta urbano and two radios.
Página/12 is a Kirchnerite newspaper. The owner Víctor Santa María considers that, although it is not a complete advocate of the Kirchners, the newspaper supports most of their policies. In turn, it is also against the policies of the president Mauricio Macri.
When Julio Nudler, who was the head of the economic department of Página/12, impeached the chief of the Kirchner cabinet with corruption allegations in 2004 the directorate of Página/12 refused to publish an article of Nudler. Nudler accused Página/12 of censorship and the article was finally published, with an added note from his colleague Horacio Verbitsky stating that some of the data in the article was wrong.
The government of the Kirchners favored Página/12 with a huge portion of the advertising media selection. State advertising was destined to media politically aligned to the Kirchners, instead of to the most sold ones; this was used as a reward to such media for their political support. The Kirchner administration ceased to release full numbers of this operation in 2009. As of 2010, the partial numbers released revealed that Página/12 received 33.9 million pesos, 26.5% of the total advertising. The media of Sergio Szpolski, also a vocal supporter to the Kirchners, got 21% of the total, and both of them combined received the 47.5% of all the advertising. In contrast, Clarín, the highest sold newspaper, only got 12.9 million, 10% of the total advertising. Mauricio Macri was elected president in 2015, and redefined the advertising scheme. Página/12 received 3.2 million in 2017 under the new scheme. Víctor Santa María considers that this is a campaign of defamation by a cabal of hegemonic groups, and that the freedom of the press is in danger. He was supported by a number of former populist Latin American presidents, who wrote a manifesto against the perceived censorship against Página/12.
When Jorge Bergoglio was elected as Pope Francis, Página/12 published renewed allegations about his actions during the Dirty War. However, due to the Pope's popularity in Argentina, Cristina Kirchner made what the political analyst Claudio Fantini called a "Copernican shift" in her relations with him and fully embraced the Francis phenomenon. Página/12 then removed their controversial articles about Bergoglio, written by Horacio Verbitsky, from their web page, as a result of this change.
A 2012 comic strip titled "An Adventure of David Gueto" featured a parody of a DJ, asking the prisoners of a Nazi concentration camp to dance, and a caricature of Adolf Hitler approved the idea, adding that "if they are relaxed, you get a better soap". Sergio Widder, director for Latin America office of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said: "This so-called parody is beyond offensive. As a newspaper that has been a champion for human rights and fight against racism since its foundation, we expect the editors of Pagina/12 to immediately and publicly apologize for this distortion of history. Pagina/12 'Young Culture' section would better serve its youthful readers by teaching them the importance of preserving the memory of the Nazi genocide through remebrance, education and prevention of human rights violations". The newspaper issued an apology afterwards.
In July 2017, Aerolíneas Argentinas ceased distribution of the Pagina 12 newspapers on their planes. They argued that the newspaper had a debt on the payment for this distribution since the previous year. ADEPA voiced their concern, and asked both parts to find a satisfactory solution.
In 2007, Casa América Catalunya, directed by the governments of Spain, Barcelona and Catalunya, gave Página/12 his annual prize for Freedom of expression for its "rigor and professionalism". placed at the service of justice and human rights" through hands of Spaniard musician Joan Manuel Serrat who said: "I think we are in this situation that often occurs in which those of us who participate knows perfectly what is happening, which is so important that it fills us with pride and is part of our memory, but outsiders don't really know. We must transmit this to others, transmitting what is Página/12, what these journalists of Argentina have done, those who made Página/12 possible and made other newspapers and publications possible, sometimes at risk of his own life"
- Casale O’Ryan, Mariana (2014). "The Making of Jorge Luis Borges as an Argentine Cultural Icon". MHRA.
- López, José Ignacio. El Hombre de Clarín. Buenos Aires: Editorial Sudamericana, 2008.
- "En la provincia del Presidente se perdió algo muy pesado: el miedo". Diario Perfil. 17 June 2007.
- "Nuestra historia" [Our History]. Retrieved 2 February 2018.
- Balcarce, Luis (14 April 2013). "Jorge Lanata: "El kirchnerismo ha armado un enorme aparato de prensa con dinero público que no ve nadie"" (in Spanish). periodistadigital.com. Retrieved 23 January 2014.
- "Szpolski y Página/12 recibieron casi la mitad de la publicidad oficial" [Szpolski and Página 12 got almost half of the state advertising] (in Spanish). Perfil. January 20, 2011. Retrieved July 24, 2018.
- "Cristina festejó con Página 12, sin recordar a Lanata" [Cristina celebrated with Página 12, ignoring Lanata]. La Nación (in Spanish). May 31, 2012. Retrieved July 25, 2018.
- Gabriel Ziblat (February 28, 2016). ""No existe el periodismo independiente", dice el nuevo dueño del diario 'Página/12'" ["There's no such a thing as independent journalism", says the new owner of the Página 12 newspaper] (in Spanish). Perfil. Retrieved July 25, 2018.
- "Grave censura política de Página/12 a Julio Nudler". rodolfowalsh.org (in Spanish). 28 October 2004. Retrieved 22 March 2013.
- "De títeres y titiriteros: la columna de Julio Nudler". perfil.com (in Spanish). 5 May 2008. Retrieved 22 March 2013.
- "Nudler sobre Verbitsky". rodolfowalsh.org (in Spanish). 16 November 2004. Retrieved 22 March 2013.
- Alejandro Alfie (October 31, 2017). "Aumenta el gasto en publicidad oficial, pero baja en medios K" [The budget for oficial advertising increases, but it lowers for the K media]. Clarín (in Spanish). Retrieved July 25, 2018.
- "Santa María se defiende: "Apuntan a callar cualquier manifestación disidente"" [Santa María defends himself: "They want to silence any disident voice"] (in Spanish). Perfil. February 14, 2018. Retrieved July 25, 2018.
- Associated Press in Buenos Aires (27 March 2013). "Cristina Fernández de Kirchner turns Pope Francis from foe to friend". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 March 2014.
- "Página 12 sacó notas de Verbitsky sobre Bergoglio y la dictadura" [Página 12 removed Verbitsky's articles about Bergoglio and the dictatorship] (in Spanish). Perfil. 18 November 2014. Archived from the original on 20 June 2015. Retrieved 28 May 2015.
- "Pagina/12 Issues Apology - Wiesenthal Center Expresses Indignation at a Comic Strip Published in Argentine Daily Pagina/12 Mocking Victims of the Holocaust; Urges Immediate Public Apology". Simon Wiesenthal Center. Retrieved July 24, 2018.
- "ADEPA pidió que Aerolíneas Argentinas permita la circulación de Página 12" [ADEPA asked Aerolineas Argentinas to allow the distribution of Pagina 12] (in Spanish). Perfil. July 10, 2017. Retrieved February 2, 2018.
- "Por su compromiso con la memoria" (in Spanish). Retrieved May 6, 2017.