By Oliver Sefrin ///
Deutsche Welle’s DW-TV Latinoamérica channel is on air 24 hours a day in the region broadcasting information on Germany, Europe and bilateral issues. Broadcasts include Journal (news), Prisma (documentaries and features), Cuadriga (talk show) and other magazine programmes. Two hours of programming are currently in Spanish, the remaining programmes alternate between German and English.
Starting in February 2012, however, DW plans to significantly expand its Spanish-language journalistic coverage. Viewers in Latin America can then receive 20 hours of television from Germany a day in Spanish. Portuguese-language programmes for Brazil will also benefit from the expansion. Here, weekly TV formats are planned that will be produced for partner channels. DW director Erik Bettermann emphasizes: “Latin America is one of Deutsche Welle’s core regions. Germany is highly respected in the region, and DW is in strong demand among information seekers and partner channels between Mexico and Argentina. We want to further consolidate this position in the market with the programme expansion.”
DW-TV produces TV formats like the Debates sin Fronteras talk show in cooperation with Latin American television partners such as SJRTV and RTV (both from Mexico), ARTV (Chile) and SERTV (Panama). In total, DW collaborates with almost 900 partners in 19 countries. DW’s Colombian partner channel Señal Colombia offers DW content via three media. “The DW programmes we broadcast offer a different aesthetic and a different narrative from Colombian television,” says the station’s director, Francisco Ortiz. “Our home audience are really enthusiastic.” DW’s most important partner in Brazil is Net, Latin America’s biggest cable company with 4.3 million paying subscribers. In addition, DW offers extensive Internet services for Latin America in Spanish and Portuguese. Users from Brazil occupy fifth place among visitors to www.dw-world.de. The Spanish-language website is accessed about 700,000 times a month.
Furthermore, the DW Akademie is active in media development and journalistic training in the region with workshops and advisory and training services. It also offers specialized training courses, e.g. on environmental journalism, together with Latin American universities. At DW’s headquarters in Bonn, up-and-coming journalists from Latin America and other regions of the world can complete a Master’s degree in international media studies.