It’s been a turbulent start to the new year for Mexico. With an economy already reeling from the rhetoric of Trump’s campaign, and now direct executive actions, the country was dealt another blow when it suddenly increased gasoline prices by 15%-20% on January 1, which has also lead to price increases for nearly all consumer products.
The price hike, known as “gasolinazo” has spawned rallies and protests throughout the country, a phenomenon not seen since 2014 — the year 43 students studying at a teachers college went missing in the rural town of Ayotzinapa and the corruption scandal of Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and his wife known as “La Casa Blanca.”
Additionally, Mexico is enduring a campaign of disinformation and corruption that many consider to be a government strategy to divert public attention from the measure taken to remove the gasoline subsidy. In this context, some citizen groups have taken up the task of documenting the protests to help raise voices of discontent and counter the disinformation campaign.
WITNESS has joined this effort, and together with La Sandía Digital and CoAA TV. On January 9th we filmed this video to amplify one of the rallies in Mexico City. In it we hear proposals and concerns from the protesters themselves.
The strategy we followed to make this video goes hand in hand with WITNESS’ video advocacy methodology, which includes taking some time before recording and thinking about the: objective, message and audience. In other words: what do we want to say, whom do we want to tell, and what do we want to achieve?
Objective: To reduce disinformation and make visible that, despite the efforts to demobilize and divert attention about an unpopular economic measure which is strongly criticized by the economists themselves, the people have come out to express themselves and make their anger heard.
Message: To achieve this, we focus on showing the purpose of the rally from the voices of the protesters themselves. In summary, they are a series of measures, including constitutional reforms, which have weakened the Mexican economy and security, which is why there is a weariness in many sectors of the population.
Audience: Mainly those people who seek to understand the depths of the discontent felt by a large part of the Mexican people.