This month of June marks the first 25 years since CONFIDENCIAL was founded, dedicated to producing independent journalism to hold power accountable and promote public debate. CONFIDENCIAL was born in 1996 as a weekly print magazine with the same editorial line and direction as Esta Semana, the television program founded a year earlier with a morning schedule that has aired uninterruptedly on Sundays at 8 pm since the year 2000, even under conditions of television censorship since January 2019. Our journalistic project grew in 2006 with Esta Noche, a second television program, and in 2016 with Niú, an online magazine. It is now consolidated as a digital daily with a single newsroom that brings all these products, and more, together in confidencial.digital, a multimedia platform.
At CONFIDENCIAL, we consider journalism a public good because use by one person does not diminish use by another. Collectively, we aspire for our journalism’s public value to multiply exponentially as more Nicaraguans choose our products to inform themselves, understand their context better, think critically, and make difficult decisions. It explains why our journalism is available to all, without restrictions or fees. This way of understanding our work and our role in society is not improvised, but the result of our track record and lessons learned over 25 years.
Our commitment to the truth and to our audiences explains why, despite brutal attacks from the Ortega-Murillo dictatorship, we are still here, fulfilling our mission with excellence. They will not silence us because our newsroom is not the offices or the production equipment that the dictatorial police stole from us on two occasions. They will not silence us because, despite the dictatorship’s television censorship, we continue to inform through all possible ways. As long as the citizenry continues to demand reliable information to strengthen their critical thinking and exercise their autonomy, we will continue to inform.
The Ortega-Murillo regime unravels insanely as it tries and fails to silence us. The audience’s will to be informed and journalists' will to inform are manifestations of freedom of thought, which is immune and in fact, emboldened in the face of brute force. As long as there is a receptive audience we will never be silenced. Our commitment is unbreakable, despite the aggressions. We will continue to imagine and build a public interest media outlet that serves freedom, justice, and citizens’ right to demand that power is held accountable.
Imagining CONFIDENCIAL’s future is an act of resistance
Since Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo unleashed unbridled violence in April 2018, up to this moment of heightened repression, CONFIDENCIAL has constantly faced the challenge of keeping a balance between continuing to produce quality journalism uninterruptedly; protecting our journalists’ security and wellbeing from the dictatorship’s arbitrariness; and continuing to develop our future as a media outlet, alongside the audiences we serve. Following the second illegal police raid against us, on May 20, 2021, that balance has been put to the test. Our journalists’ security and the continuity of our informative work are, without a doubt, first-order priorities. Continuing to imagine and build CONFIDENCIAL’s future is also an act of resistance.
This is the point of departure for the commemoration of our 25th anniversary, which we will undertake throughout the second half of 2021, alongside our audiences. First of all, we will focus on producing our very best journalism to cover the uncertain political process that lies ahead, in the context of the most complex and severe crisis in postwar Nicaragua. Furthermore, we will refresh our brand and redesign our website to optimize the experience for our users. We will also introduce several new products, including Nicas Migrantes, a platform dedicated to producing quality journalism for and about Nicaraguan migrants, and our Political Test, an initiative that invites the audience to reflect on key social, political, economic, and cultural issues. Finally, we will launch a commemorative campaign to engage in meaningful conversations with our audiences and offer several eBooks with the best of our work in the past 25 years.
Beyond these initiatives, we hope that the commemoration of our first quarter-century producing journalism as a public good will strengthen the bonds of trust and solidarity that tie us and our audience together. The strength of these bonds indicates, without the slightest doubt, that we may continue to imagine and build CONFIDENCIAL’s future, at the service of the public interest, no matter what. We will cover the end of the dictatorship and Nicaragua’s transition to democracy. We will empower our audiences and contribute to establishing citizen participation and critical thinking as pillars of a society in which justice and freedom are protected and reaffirmed each day, in all spaces. Thank you for your trust.
Enrique Gasteazoro is CONFIDENCIAL's General Manager. This article was originally published in Spanish and translated by our staff.