No Puppet's Land: The Role of Social Media in Puerto Rico's Mainstream Television

Manuel G Avilés-Santiago

Abstract


This article explores the role of social media in the boycott and eventual cancellation of Puerto Rico's highest rated TV gossip show, titled SuperXclusivo. The show, hosted by a puppet character called “La Comay” (in English, The Godmother), ignited a controversy in 2012 when it was implied that the murder of a local publicist was caused by soliciting the services of a sex worker hours before he was killed. Within 24 hours of the comments being made, a social media movement emerged calling a boycott of La Comay. Through an online ethnography and a close textual analysis this article offers a close read into this event in order to show how it embodies two larger social and political phenomena: 1) the ways social media demonstrates an unexpected networked power vis-à-vis the entrenched power of a major media corporation and 2) the ways the movement is reconfiguring a cultural citizenship while it subsidizes a second-class citizenship attached to Puerto Rico. 

Keywords


cultural citizenship; La Comay;second-class citizenship;social media movement;Puerto Rico

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Journal of Latin American Communication Research - 2014

 

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