Indigenous Media in the Mexican Isthmus


 Bertha Rodríguez Santos (Chatin) is a filmmaker and freelance reporter for U.S. and Mexican news organizations. From 2002 - 2005, she was the media coordinator of the indigenous communications program of the Uníon de Comunidades Indígenas de la Zona Norte del Istmo (UCIZONI), an advocacy group for Native communities in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, in Oaxaca, Mexico.
At UCIZONI, she and Violeta Chavez co-directed four documentaries, including La Tierra Es Nuestra Esperanza, winner of the 1st Place Award for the Defense of Indigenous Rights at the 2004 Festival Internacional de Cine y Video de los Pueblos Indígenas in Santiago, Chile. As UCIZONI media coordinator, Rodríguez helped found the community radio station in San Juan Guichicovi, which broadcasts in Mixe and Spanish. She also has reported for media groups in southern California, Mexico City, and Oaxaca. Rodríguez received her BA in journalism and collective communication from the Escuela Nacional de Estudios Profesionales, Aragón- UNAM, in Nezahualcóyotl, Mexico. She grew up in Mexico in Palomares, Oaxaca, and lives in Los Angeles, California.
"We want media that inspires creativity, that goes to the root of what it means to be human, that questions, that includes the participation of everyone, that incites us to abandon our comfortable role as spectators. We want media that gives voice to those at the bottom, the community, or better yet, that the people be the ones to take over the television channels, use the radio stations, make their own videos, transform the walls, make their own presses, invade the theaters, appropriate the Internet, occupy the pages of the newspapers to say the truth, as they are now doing in all the country, even on the other side, and that more than anything, that they teach us, like our colleagues in Oaxaca." --From Native Networks