INTERVIEW with Roberto Sánchez, director of the mythical program “Si amanece, nos vamos”, which is broadcasted from 4 to 6 am on Cadena SER. He is also the author of the books ‘Noche en vela’, ‘Asesinos de Series’ and other novels. He is also the author of the book series ‘El Juego de los Detectives’.
Roberto, How have the Internet and social networks changed the way journalism is practiced?
Immediacy has been gained in some media. But, the networks and the Internet have changed the orientation of the pyramid that used to say that the essence of the news was in the headline, lead and first paragraph. Now that part is nothing more than a bait followed by filler to see what you are looking for at the end of the thread.
In that sense the essence of the profession has changed: we have gone from being counters of things to professionals of the trick of faking and hiding the crown jewel. It is a perversion from which I hope we will soon emerge.
In what ways does the work of journalists benefit?
It is clear that it facilitates access to sources and documentation. Through the networks, contacts and testimonies that previously required a greater effort of research and production are achieved.
The journalist is more exposed (for better and for worse) and is more accessible and has more critical references about his or her work
In addition, the journalist is more exposed (for good and for bad) and is more accessible and has more critical references about his work; which is not necessarily good since it is accredited that fury and rage are usually engines with greater combustion than flattery. There are haters; not so much lovers.
They have also brought negative consequences… what would be the main ‘evils’ of social networks?
In addition to what has already been outlined, I think that in journalism when we talk about social networks we really have one in mind; ours: Twitter (X). Sometimes we have been tempted to believe that what is going on there is sociologically representative of something.
Evidently, no. Apart from the fact that trends and opinions about those trends are moved and agitated by very specific interests in the hands of bots. There is also the algorithm that prioritizes the feedback of topics and opinions that are part of your world and your circles d concordance in interests. Therefore, the cocktail you drink has a rancid sectarian whiff.
How do you use social networks?
Less and less. Right now, my Twitter and Instagram accounts are basically limited to being mere showcases for posting professional and promotional issues. That’s in terms of the direction from here to my followers. Internally, I use Twitter to follow the main headlines of various media of different nature, editorial line and locations. My Facebook account is even more neglected.
They used to consume a lot of my energy and time. I’m not old enough to spend my time in festering disputes. I need to read more and watch more series and movies.
Do you think that radio is taking full advantage of the networks? Is a greater integration possible?
I think that radio has shown, once again, the great flexibility and ductility it has always had; its great capacity to adapt to the new habitat. After a period of loss of oremus in which it gave too much voice to what was happening on Twitter, it now uses the networks to expand its radius of action and not lose sight of the necessary interactivity with the listener; the healthy one.
What role do they play in “Si amanece…”? Maybe it’s too early in the day to employ the networks?
They serve us to be in that new showcase. To present our offer and our product to an audience that perhaps had not approached the medium, the radio or the podcast. Also to hear the proposals and suggestions of those who follow us. Not all of them can be put into practice, but they are always taken into account.
And then there is a space like El Juego de los Detectives where through the networks you can also participate live. Internet has made that there are no hours: a late-night program lives all day long; it has life beyond its natural territory.
How do social networks help to achieve audience? Why is it important to measure social audience?
If I’m honest with you, we don’t measure social audience in a very specific or scientific way. No, at least in the writing of the program. They give us an idea. It’s a thermometer to know the penetration or the interest that a section, a gag, a new collaborator has had…
And as for gaining audience, I think that in the previous answer I already alluded to this: they give you a great tool to extend the life of the program, to be seen and to reach other audiences who did not know you.
What feedback do you usually receive from viewers?
It’s not usually bad, although it’s clear that on the networks it’s more noticeable those who want to get into a fight. In our case it is a very participative feedback, positive, supportive and that adds up.
What’s new in the new season of “Si amanece”…?
Well, a children’s version of The Detective Game. Adriana Mourelos has launched it this summer and, as we found in the pandemic, the little ones are big fans of this section. Thanks to the networks and the podcast we will be able to do a spin off for youngsters that will hopefully drag the parents along. It’s a great family game, as many families can attest when they travel by car.
Can you tell us any funny anecdotes that have happened to you on the networks?
The one that comes to mind has to do with a piece they did about me in a digital media on the occasion of the return of Si amanece nos vamos. Perhaps it would have been simpler if, as you did, they had called me. However, they fed it with scraps they found on the net: other interviews, videos, wikipedia, my publications in networks. And the truth is that to be based on these documentary sources it was well constructed a profile of who Roberto Sanchez could be.
Too bad that one of the accounts consulted was not mine and as a result of the photo that had that other person as profile background on Twitter they deduced that I was a consummate “animalist”. Nothing could be further from the truth; my allergies mean that I can’t get close to any of them that have fur.