Spanish News in English: The Spain Report
Are you looking for an unbiased source of Spanish news in English? An honest source that is not influenced by political and propaganda issues? A source of Spanish news in English that has not been poorly translated by some kind of google online translation robot?
“Oooh stop it!” I hear you say. “It’s not really like that is it?” Surely the tabloids and online sources we have access to are of a higher standard than that. Well, until now, I must admit I haven’t been very impressed!
However, there appears to be light at the end of the tunnel. A great new source of Spanish news in correctly written English and without political under minings and influence has been born … introducing The Spain Report!
We (FIS) asked Matthew Bennett (MB), the brains behind The Spain Report to tell us more about this exciting new project.
MB: I first arrived in Spain all the way back in 1998 to teach English in a summer camp in the northern mountains. I was about to start the third (ERASMUS) year of a degree in Modern Languages & Linguistics and I was met off the flight at Barajas, whisked across Madrid in the back of a car and pushed onto the night train up north. I got off at 5 a.m. in the middle of nowhere, and Father Javier, the priest who ran the camp, was there waiting for me.
I’ve been here for about 13 years in total now, first struggling to make my way as a journalist, then as a translator and now as a journalist again. My first company was a languages affair, but it seems I just can’t pluck this journalism thorn out of my side.
My son Hugo was born here just over a year ago, so it’s personal now.
FIS: So, what is The Spain Report?
MB: A new online newspaper to do 21st–Century, independent foreign correspondence in Spain, for readers in Spain and around the world in English.
The idea is to do breaking news and major stories in a variety of broadsheet- and broadcast-quality text and multimedia formats for you.
Completely independent and non–partisan, with no corporate or party-political interests, it’s just The Spain Report, you the reader and a kind of quest for a deeper truth about the major news stories coming out of Spain.
It seems The Spain Report’s readers also want me to get out and do as much original, on-the-ground, in-depth reporting from around the country as possible.
FIS: What gave you the idea to launch The Spain Report?
MB: Analysing the ‘News from Spain in English’ market as part of the application process for The Guardian’s Madrid Correspondent position, which came up in May and which they still haven’t found anyone for for some inexplicable reason. There are so many ways existing media organistions could be doing much better in terms of reporting on Spain in English but for some reason seem not to be doing so.
FIS: Why is it different to other online newspapers?
MB: It really is completely independent and non-partisan. There’s no editorial line, as such, no party political leaning, no ‘angles’ going into a story. Just talking, and listening and translating and finding a deeper truth for you as a reader.
Then I want to make use of all of the mobile and digital news gathering tools we have available nowadays to bring readers along for the ride as much as possible and to give them news and information about Spain in lots of different ways that make sense online.
FIS: Who are you appealing to? (i.e. target market readership)
MB: Anyone interested in Spain, which so far seems to break down into four groups: interested foreign readers abroad (investors, etc), English-speaking expats in Spain, what we might call international Spaniards, and finally global media editors and producers who want to stay on top of events in Spain and have access to people who know the country when big Spain stories break here.
MB: A wonderful experience, yes. There was a massive amount of global media and reader interest around the Santiago train crash at the end of July. After live-blogging it all night and all the following day, and speaking to a couple of dozen global news programmes about it, I asked The Spain Report’s readers if they wanted me to go up there for a couple of weeks to speak to the people involved and find out more for them. They said yes, and they funded most of the trip too.
They basically bought their own independent Spain correspondent for a couple of weeks to ferret out a deeper truth for them. I collected enough material (photos, visits, data, contacts, 15-hours of unedited interviews with key figures that night, etc.) to do a really great story, but it will take a while to process it all and write it up, as I keep working on the normal news and the rest of the project.
Several people asked me if I wouldn’t mind continuing to do this by, for example, going down to Gibraltar or up to Catalonia as well. It will be my pleasure. Spain is a big enough country to be able to do this more or less permanently, between major breaking news and ongoing important stuff like the economic crisis, the secession of Catalonia or this non-stop flood of political corruption. i can think of loads of great stories in Spain waiting to be told properly in English.
So I’m now setting The Spain Report up to provide regular, continuous value to its readers. Then I want those readers to subscribe for a (very) small fee which they themselves can choose. Everyone even slightly interested in Spain should jump on board. I’m also working on how to allow readers to contribute articles and photos and things from around the country. Between the lot of us, we can do something great with The Spain Report.
FIS: What should people do if they have a topic they’d like you to cover?
MB: Just e-mail me: email@example.com
A big Family in Spain ¡GRACIAS! to Matthew and The Spain Report … a great new source of Spanish news in English!
We love independent, non biased reporting of facts. Do you? If you’d like to hep support this great new initiative, pop over to www.TheSpainReport.com and sign up for updates.
Do you have any stories you’d like Matthew to investigate? We’d love to hear about them …
Author: Lisa Sadleir
We love Family Life In Spain. Join us as we share experiences and essential updates, advice & assistance related to living in and moving to Spain. ¡ Olé !