Mundo Al Revés’ three hosts: Sebastian Molina, Carolina Bessolo, and Sergio Mier (Photo courtesy: M.A.R.)
Blogs have taken off in the eastern city of Santa Cruz, Bolivia due to no small part to the efforts of the individuals behind the website Mundo Al Revés (Upside Down World). What started as a portal for articles, news and opinions, made a push to encourage local friends and family to begin writing blogs. Now, the site has expanded to various formats and boasts a weekly one-hour television program on national television, which has made promotion of blogs a large part of its focus.
The program, aptly named Mundo al Revés, mixes comedy sketches, personal interviews and urban tourism and is shown every Saturday evening at 18:00 and a repeat on Sunday at the same time on the station PAT, which is transmitted nationwide. What is billed as the first website to have its own television show, computer literacy plays a prominent role introducing sites such as Wikipedia to its audience. Each show also devotes time in each show to the promotion of the use of blogs. In conjunction with the show and website, a campaign called “Loco por los blogs” (Crazy for blogs) works with local schools and universities teaching students about the concept and use of blogs. The campaign is led by Claudia Vaca and the campaign’s accomplishments are documented on blog.mundoalreves.com. As new blogs are created after the seminars given at 12 schools and 2 universities, they are added to the site’s blogroll. Using tools such as Technorati, the wide reach of this campaign is demonstrated on air by tracking how many sites have joined the campaign.
The relationship with blogs and the television program do not end with this campaign. Naturally, the show has its own TV blog to interact with its audience, receive comments and preview upcoming shows. The three hosts, Sebastian Molina (Plan B), Sergio Mier (Bloglivia) and Carolina Bessolo (Sol Girasol) each write regularly on their own personal blogs. Even one of the production engineers, Edson Hurtado, will not be left out of the blogging fun and will soon have a blog of his own.
Hurtado also hosts is a radio show in Santa Cruz called “Nuestra Noche” (Our Night) and every Monday from 9:30 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. on Santa Cruz FM 92.3, the Mundo Al Revés team takes to the airwaves to spread their blogging message. What might be next in store for this ambitious and successful team from Mundo Al Revés? Perhaps a feature length movie about blogging?