Getting to know Eugenio Mallol, journalist in El Mundo
There are two types of journalists, miners and diamond cutters… and why do digital companies want features in print media? Eugenio Mallol journalist in El Mundo, debates these and other important questions in our interview with him for Etcetera.
Eugenio Mallol, journalist in El Mundo
What advice would you give to your 25-year-old self?
Be the master of your own time; never feel under the control of others, especially at work. Being a good person is the best way to be a good professional. And aside from that, compete as much as you can.
Are you an active user of social networks? Which one is your favorite and why?
I´m not very active. I just use Twitter on a daily basis for professional reasons. I find it the most useful of all of them since it´s the most direct way to know what the opinion leaders from around the world, who I like to follow, are thinking about and what they are recommending to read.
Do you think that the new channels of communication which are emerging are really essential to reach the audience?
It depends on the audience you are trying to reach. New digital tools mean that you can get get to millions of people with the information which up until now hasn´t been really ‘democratic’´. But it also leads to the saturation of the Internet with messages whose form is way more prominent than the background.
In that sense, we are losing some knowledge due to all the information we receive and the value of readers is decreasing in relation to traditional media. Certainly, it´s true that there are forums for the creation of thought and ideas that are now more accessible than ever, thanks to these same digital tools.
But, what should make us think is the following question and I know the answer first-hand: Why do big global companies which we consider within the digital realm want features in print media? From my experience, I´ve had requests from ALL of them. There is something that new tools still haven´t achieved in order to compete for the audience with the added value, the one of the opinion leaders. And the most worrying thing is that instead of redirecting the strategy in that direction, to enhance its main asset, traditional media prefers to reach a massive audience, leaving like that a huge gap.
What do you think are the advantages of the Internet and social networks for the world of information?
1. First of all, immediacy.
2. The global vision: now you can incorporate in you calendar events occurring thousands of kilometers away. This is a breakthrough to share knowledge and improve your outlook.
3. The interaction of a multitude of actors who contribute to converting any information into a collective work. For me, the readers´ critics/comments are very useful, I instantly check the news.
4. The ability to create streams of social movements with a greater reach than the ones on a local level and much faster.
Do you have a favorite journalist? If so, who is he/she and what do you like most or find most inspiring about him/her?
In my opinion, there are two types of journalists, miners and diamond cutters. From the first one, my favorite is Carlos Segovia from El Mundo; and from the second one, Fran Llorente, the former director of the RTVE news. Nevertheless, there are two journalists who balance well between these two worlds adding also a key factor: courage, understood as the antithesis of recklessness. One is Rafael Navarro with whom we founded Innovadores, and the other is Pedro J. Ramírez.
What is the biggest obstacle you have had to face in the world of communications?
Although it may sound paradoxical, sometimes it is misunderstanding, and the others my rigidity to change the strategy. Sometimes I was right and on other occasions, the others were right. The time invested in imposing the best solution has been unfortunately lost time. One of my efforts for years has been reducing as much as possible the wasted time.
Would you like to work in a communications agency?
Of course. I´ve often wondered if I have the proper profile because I tend to escape from too rigid visions and one of the biggest mistakes that companies and institutions commit is to confuse their internal communications strategy with external communication. These are two completely different things. I think it would be an exciting challenge and a huge responsibility for me.
If you weren´t a journalist, in what other profession would you like to work?
Although I don´t know if one day I´ll be up to it, but I´d like to devote myself to university teaching. The only thing I know for sure is that I´m not the kind of person who would like to retire.