9 Questions for Eduardo Arcos

Eduardo ArcosEduardo Arcos of Mexico City is one of the few emerging Latin Americans who have managed to make a career out of blogging. Besides his own prolific and infamous blog, ALT1040, Arcos is also the founder of Hipertextual, 10blogs, and what appears to be a grand-scale upcoming project.

GV: It seems like an “A-list” of bloggers is starting to emerge out of Latin America. Where do 9rules and 10blogs play a part in that?

EA: Unfortunately, yes, there is. But it's mostly paid attention to by Mexican bloggers rather than bloggers from other countries. 9rules will choose “quality sites.” Well, that's a little subjective. Blogs in Spanish entering 9rules will turn into “A-list” weblogs.

GV: 9rules seems to focus on design. Does 10blogs.com have a focus?

EA: Not really, we're just a group of friends, getting together, sharing information, and trying to help each other out. But we're not out trying to compete with 9rules.

GV: You've had some problems with the Mexican telecommunications monopoly, TelMex recently and have written about their founder and CEO, Carlos Slim. Do you think other internet service providers will start appearing in Mexico soon?

EA: The problem is that every single company trying to enter Mexico's telecommunications market has to use (in one way or another) TelMex's infrastructure. So they depend on them … and if TelMex provides poor service, then the other companies will also. For example, AT&T is now offering DSL service, but they are just TelMex resellers so there is no option.

GV: Why aren't other companies laying their own lines?

EA: The government doesn't let them.

GV: You hinted about a new project on your last podcast – can you give us an idea of what it's about?

EA: Oh, I can't talk about it just yet. What I can tell you is that some of the most famous people in FM radio here in Mexico City are involved so it's going to be big.

GV: What do you think can be done to help bring together the North American and Latin American blogospheres?

EA: Unfortunately, the main problem is language. I have some contact with people like Xeni Jardin from Boing Boing, we did some collaboration recently translating posts from Jacob Appelbaum from the Houston Astrodome They posted a chat transcription on Boing Boing and I posted the translation on ALT1040 – it was a very popular post. I try to show what is happening in the US … most of my readers don't read any English blogs because of the language barriers so a lot of information doesn't reach Latin American blog readers.

GV: Do you have any favorite weblogs you've recently come across?

EA: My favorite blog recently, hmmm, tough question. I've been reading Om Malik's blog a lot – he's got some great stuff. And in Spanish, Pixel y Dixel is one of my favorite blogs.

GV: What have you been listening to?

EA: I've been listening to Steve Wilson's (from Porcupine Tree) side project called Blackfield and also Clor.

GV: OK, and finally … where's my sticker!?

EA: :) They're coming. I've already received all the requests via mail. It's incredible to “devirtualize” the people you read on the internet … at least, by reading their handwriting on a real letter.


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