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CBS Feature on Brazil Runs Light on São Paulo

What's New — By jmiller on December 15, 2010 at 3:16 am
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60 Minutes report on Brazil keeps viewers in the dark about São Paulo (image credit: Thomas Locke Hobbs/Flickr)

Steve Kroft of CBS News’ 60 Minutes reported this week on Brazil’s global ascent. His feature, however, glossed over São Paulo’s role in the  country’s economic success story.

Video: “Brazil’s Rising Star” on 60 Minutes

Sampa was pictured early in the 13-minute segment entitled “Brazil’s Rising Star.” The program then largely ignored Brazil’s financial center thereafter, choosing to focus on its capital Brasilia and most famous city Rio de Janeiro.

São Paulo was mentioned mostly in reference to Brazil’s industrial might, but scenes from the city were scarce throughout the video package. All of the interviews, including sit-downs  with President Lula and billionaire Eike Batista, were shot in either Rio or Brasilia.

São Paulo is Brazil’s richest and most populous city. Yet Sampa often gets disproportionately little coverage from international media outlets, which choose to focus on the more spectacular settings elsewhere in the country. The equivalent might look something like repeated reports from foreign journalists on the U.S. recession with only passing references to New York.  Or features on China that ignore Shanghai.

Kroft opens his report by contrasting the Americans’ stereotypical images of Brazil–samba, beaches and soccer–with aspects driving its mounting influence on the world stage. Overall, the piece was strong and gave an informative view of modern-day Brazil. But by leaving São Paulo out of the discussion, CBS essentially describes a Cadillac CTS-V Coupe without discussing its engine.

Tags: 60 Minutes, Brasilia, CBS News, CTS-V Coupe, Eike Batista, Lula, Rio, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Shanghai, Steve Kroft

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