Mino to Globo: “And the Kamel You Rode In On”

“Contributions to a dossier on the Brazilian media: Kamel, of Globo TV, protests, but has he listened to the recordings of the conversation between Capt. Bruno and the reporters? Strange, truly strange. It is confirmed, by the way, that Globo TV received the photos of the mountain of money before its competitors. In the case of the Veja cover story, on the supposed meeting between Freud (Godoy) and Gedimar (Pereira Passos), that the times and dates Veja reported are inconsistent with the official documents on which they are based. Among other things …”

Mino Carta (Brazil) notes recently:

Colocadas em 20º lugar na classificação das Empresas Mais Admiradas no Brasil, que a pesquisa TNS InterScience realiza e a CartaCapital publica, as Organizações Globo pretendiam inserir um anúncio na edição especial a ser lançada na segunda-feira 29. Rezava o anúncio: “De tanto nos investigar, a CartaCapital acabou descobrindo o que você já sabia”.

After finishing in 20th place in the ranking of Brazil’s most admired companies, which TNS InterScience compiles and our magazine, CartaCapital, publishes, the Globo Organizations decided to insert an ad in the special edition, which comes out on October 29. The ad copy reads: “After all that investigating of us, CartaCapital wound up discovering what you already knew.”

Where did Globo finish in last year’s survey?

Has it gained or lost ground in the esteem of the 1,300 Brazilian executives surveyed?

Não havia como aceitar a mensagem global, sutil como uma Panzer Divisionen da Wehrmacht. Ao recusar o anúncio, em carta dirigida ao diretor de propaganda da Central Globo de Comunicação, José Land, não deixamos de esclarecer as nossas razões. O texto pretendia demonstrar que CartaCapital investigou em vão certas situações a envolver as Organizações Globo. Tentativa obviamente mistificadora.

There was no way we could accept Globo’s advertisement, which was about as subtle as a Panzer division. In refusing the ad, in a letter addressed to Globo’s ad eirector, José Land, we made our reasons quite clear. The copy implies that CartaCapital investigated certain situations involving Globo, but in vain. An obvious attempt at mystification.

CC’s “Dossier on the Media” issue, and follow-ups thereto, chronicled Globo’s role in that astonishing election-eve “mountain of money” scandal last year. See

I can testify that the magazine’s latest fact-check — targeting an op-ed by Ali Kamel on alleged “Communist indoctrination” in Brazilian textbooks — caught these people dead to rights.

You see a lot of astonishing dishonesty from the likes of Globo and Abril — and with great frequency and regularity, too — but this was a massive, throbbing tissue of out and out lies, lies by omission, fabrications and misrepresentations:

And see also

É do conhecimento até do mundo mineral o currículo da empresa da família Marinho. Apoio ao golpe de 1964 e à ditadura que se seguiu. Crescimento vertiginoso à sombra e com a ajuda do regime fardado. Oposição ferrenha à campanha das Diretas Já. Favorecimento sem conta durante o governo Sarney, com a bênção do ministro das Comunicações Antonio Carlos Magalhães.

The curriculum vitae of the Marinho family store is well-known. Support for the 1964 coup and the dictatorship that followed. Explosive growth in the shadow of, and with the aid of, the uniformed regime. Iron opposition to the “Rights Right Now!” movement. Received a blank check on patronage from the Sarney government, with the blessing of the Minister of Communications, Antonio Carlos Magalhães.

E assim por diante, rosário de dezenas de outros episódios nada edificantes, sem excluir a tentativa in extremis de torpedear a reeleição do presidente Lula às vésperas do primeiro turno. Todos hão de lembrar o sinistro aparecimento no vídeo global dos reais do escândalo do chamado Dossiê Serra, diligente e sabiamente empilhados.

And so on, the same old rosary of dozens of none-too-edifying episodes, without omitting its attempt to torpedo the reelection of the current president on the eve of the first rounds of the elections. Everyone recalls the appearance of that “mountain of money” in the scandal of the so-called Serra Dossier, diligently piled up, on the TV screen.

Mino emphasizes the network’s notorious political meddling, but even leaving those cases aside, it not hard to catch the broadcast and publishing empire — which not long ago controlled 80% of the TV advertising market — lying, distorting, slandering, fabricating and just plain viciously gabbling on just about any topic you can think of, trivial or momentous.

Na carta a José Land sublinhávamos também que a pesquisa da TNS InterScience junto a mais de 1.200 executivos registra as preferências de um público especial, que não representa a maioria dos brasileiros. Aspecto importante que, se não desqualifica o prêmio, desqualifica inapelavelmente o anúncio. E assim concluímos a carta: “Aceitaríamos de bom grado outro anúncio, que não nos ofendesse”.

In the letter to José Land we underscored as well that the TNS InterScience survey of 1,200 executives records the opinions of a specialized public that is not representative of most Brazilians. It is an important point to recall, which, if it does not disqualify the ranking, certainly does disqualify the advertisement. And so we conclude our letter: “We would gladly accept another ad that did not offend us.”

Dois dias depois, recebemos a resposta de José Land. Sustenta que o anúncio “nada tem de ofensivo”, enquanto “nós é que poderíamos nos sentir ofendidos pelo tratamento invariavelmente hostil”. E aí volta à cena a divisão Panzer. “Estamos reagindo com bom humor”, escreve o diretor de propaganda, “e esperávamos que vocês tivessem tido o mesmo comportamento cordial, compatível com a liberdade de expressão que tanto defendem”.

Two days later, we got a reply from José Land. He argues that the ad “contains nothing offensive,” but that “it is we might well feel offended by your invariably hostile treatment.” And here come the Panzer Divisions again. “We are responding with good humor,” writes the ad director, “and would hope that you would have shown us the same cordiality, compatible with the freedom of expression you so often defend.”

Bom humor? Cordialidade? Resta entender até onde vão a falta de senso de oportunidade e a desfaçatez de quem se acostumou a pontificar sem contraditório. Mas tudo não passa de mais um episódio na história de uma mídia sempre a serviço do poder, por ser, ela própria, um dos seus rostos mais evidentes.

Good humor? Cordiality? It goes to show you just how deeply they lack any sense of appropriateness, and the extent to which they are used to pontificating without being contradicted. But it’s all just one more episode in the history of a company that has always served power — being, itself, one of the most prominent members of the power elite.

Quanto à liberdade de expressão, ocorre-me a liberdade de que alguns cidadãos dispõem para caluniar os semelhantes. De sorte que não nos surpreenderia ver o anúncio da Globo em outros veículos.

As to liberty of expression, what come to mind are the liberties that some citizens take in slandering their fellow citizens. So that it will not surprise us to see Globo’s ad running in other publications.

On the other hand — and these people do love to take the bait to the level of hermeneutics — I suppose you could interpret the ad copy in another way: Not that CartaCapital did not catch Globo journalism, fair and square, in a number of its myriad acts of manipulation and mendacity, but that that catching them at it made no difference.

As in, “Yes, we lie, but no one listens to the people who catch us at it. [Nelson Muntz:] Ha ha!”

And they could be right about that.

On the other hand, their TV ratings are getting eaten into.

And on the other other hand, Globo journalism is not the entirety of Globo’ business, either. Far from it.

Some of their entertainment products are awfully engrossing, and the public still sesm to eat them up.

Their stable of actors includes some truly amazing talent, and their writers are capable of producing some brilliant programming when given license to do so. A Grande Familia is fun to watch. I liked the historical soap JK.

Casseta e Planeta — though people say it ain’t what is used to be — is awfully funny. Some of the pop acts they promote through their music machine are not so awfully bad — though extreme overexposure — and scheduling them for events like that Cansei rally — quickly makes you sick of them anyway.

As a culture factory, Globo has all the talent and technical know-how it needs to be awfully darn good. So why is it not better? The standard answer: Having a monopoly means never having to compete with anyone. Which tends to make you stupider. It’s a free-market theory I tend to subscribe to myself.

Not even all of its news programming is uniformly awful all the time. Their G1 news portal even showed signs for a while there of being very gung-ho to produce and deliver high-volumes of quality news in an engaging and cleverly designed manner (but seems to have been reined in lately.)

It would be interesting to know, in fact, how much of Globo’s overall annual revenues are represented by its Journalism Center operation.

Because that is really what we are talking about here. Not Globo. Globo journalism, which gets massively abused as the Marinho clan’s private gabbling ratfink PR agency.

Globo’s primetime TV journalism products and publications are overflowing with toxic sludge. There is a lot of nutritional potential there, but the savor of toxic sludge tends to put you off it pretty quickly.
And it really is hard to figure why they keep the toxic sludge levels so high.

There really seems to be no need for it.

Plenty of competent professionals there, itching for a chance to produce content fit for human consumption.

Globo journalism could actually transition over to being fairly good without costing the corporate parent a dime.

Just fire Ali Kamel, bring in someone with a modicum of intellectual honesty, and let those professionals do their jobs in a competent, ethical and independent manner.


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