Univision At 50: The Most Powerful Name In Spanish-Language News

By Alex Weprin 

The Hollywood Reporter‘s Marisa Guthrie writes an in-depth look at the state of Univision in next week’s issue. The network, which turns 50 this year, and is still by far the most-watched Spanish-language network on television, commanding 73% of the market.

News is a big part of Univision’s history, and a big part of Guthrie’s profile. Maria Elena Salinas and Jorge Ramos, who have anchored Univision’s nightly newscast “Noticiero Univision” since 1986, talked about the changes:

“I’ve been with the company for 31 years, and I can tell you there’s been a humongous change,” says Salinas of the network, which celebrates 50 years in business this year. “When we started, there were 14 million Hispanics, now there are [more than] 50 million. Before, we had to beg for interviews and explain who we were. Now the doors to the White House are open to Univision. We don’t have to go knocking on their door, they come knocking on ours.”

Of course, many media critics and pundits, especially from factions hostile to immigration, have accused Univision’s news division of engaging in “advocacy journalism.” But Salinas contends the network does not take a position on issues. “I think of it more as contributing to democracy and to the debate on immigration,” she says. “Because without our point of view it’s not a debate, it’s a monologue of blaming immigrants for all the ills of this country.”