“They’ve cut off our newsprint,” says opposition paper’s publisher

It’s a longstanding hazard of state-controlled economies, especially when newsprint or other essential supplies have to be brought in from abroad and are thus subject to foreign exchange or import regulations. This time the target is Nicaragua’s historic and now embattled newspaper La Prensa, published by the Chamorro family. “The government customs office has held up La Prensa’s imports of newsprint and ink since October, according to its editors. Nicaragua’s leading daily is now a skeletal eight pages – down from 36.” [Mary Beth Sheridan, Washington Post/Laredo Morning Times]


  • It is interesting that a shortage of newsprint matters, what with so much of the news now on-line.

    • What percentage of Nicaragua’s homes do you imagine have reliable internet connections?

      • 43%. By no means universal, but enough that it might well result in a substantial reduction in print newspaper demand.

        • According to the paper at issue, the problem isn’t the demand for newsprint that’s the issue, the problem is that the government has arbitrarily cut off their supply of newsprint.

          • My point is that lack of newsprint is less of a setback when many people read the newspaper on-line than when the print form is the only one available. Of course I agree that the government should not censor publications, directly or indirectly.

  • The recent trend of “de-platforming” those who espouse unpopular opinions seems analogous. Social media companies control an awful lot of online discourse – even though the government isn’t actively involved, there does seem to be something more than a little unfair about banning someone from mainstream popular digital public forums for having the “wrong” opinions.