Media Tribune #8, Diego Arcos and his journey from sport to sport journalism, non-stop
Diego Arcos (centre) with his colleagues Vito Muñoz and Carlos Morales at the Barcelona de Guayaquil stadium.
by Constanza Maria Pedraza
is one of the most famous sport journalists in Ecuador, working for TC
Television, DirecTV and Radio Diblu, but Diego Arcos' life has been
linked to sport since his childhood. In his youth he was a high-level
baseball player, and when he could not practise it anymore, he decided
to report it. Passion flows through his veins when he talks about it.
-What do you like the most about sport journalism?
love sports. I was an athlete, practising sport at a high level, and I
know how important and necessary is to know how to transmit it. I can be
covering and reporting for 24/7 and I have an obsession for constantly
being informed about every detail of many sports, as well as its
technical and historical sides, so the people that are listening can
receive the best information. What I like the most about sport
journalism is being there, living the joy, the drama of what happens
and, of course, making friends.
-What are the challenges that the current sport journalism must face?
nowadays make you evolve because, as professionals, we must constantly
ask ourselves: “What am I going to do today to be better? Sport
journalism and journalism in general, face the challenge that there is
more competition in the world and we have to try to live up to the
immediacy that exists and realise that this immediacy is not necessarily
always effective. I think the biggest challenge is that despite the big
change that has been in the way people read news today or follow the
reporters, they continue to believe in you as a traditional journalist.
-What is the best or most comforting coverage you have done and that have left an impression in your career?
believe that each coverage has something special. There are some that
can be uncomfortable or unpleasant because you did not have the
resources that you wanted, so I wouldn’t say that all of them are
beautiful, wonderful or comforting. But I remember in a special way when
Liga de Quito were the Copa Libertadores 2008 champions, because
Ecuador had not had great achievements at sports or football level, and
everything changed that night, even journalists were seen differently,
as winners. I felt the same in Atlanta 96 when Jefersson Pérez won a
gold medal for Ecuador and I felt the same when Ecuador went to the
second round at the FIFA World Cup in Germany 2006. But on the other
hand I love working in the Baseball World Series, because I can meet
journalists from all over the world, covering an event that maybe is not
so popular in their countries, but it becomes popular for 15 days.
-What things did you learn and from whom that you want to share with others?
this career you learn every day and from many people, I can name bosses
that at the moment realised I was not giving my 100% and they told me
to do it for the good of my work. Alfredo Adum was that journalist that
one day told me that my reports were not up to the standards that I was
used to, so he instantly let me know. I can mention the creativity of
another boss, Alvaro Freire, who is always trying to see that extra
detail of the news, to generate another kind of vision. I can name
Alfonso Harb, who showed me the ability to draw a diagram so nothing is
left out. There are those that taught me to edit, to write, even to be a
cameraman. I can remember a lot of people. The question is good because
as I try to remember, a teacher comes quickly to my head. He told me
something interesting that I will never forget, while working on
documentaries, "Remember that this is audiovisual…. Audiovisual…. audio
first, because usually everyone worries about video and forget how
important audio is”.
-This career is constantly changing. What is the current situation in your country?
work most of the year in Ecuador, although I have coverages in Buenos
Aires and Miami. But I can say that the country is changing a lot in the
way of how easily people assimilate fake news. People have learned to
believe something quickly. But also the positive of all this is that we
are in a transition in which people that consume news is slowly
beginning to realise that it is necessary to confirm, and for that, they
need to turn to the professionals that have always been there.
Diego Arcos getting ready to interview Ecuador manager Gustavo Quinteros during the qualifiers for Russia 2018.
do you think of the organisation of an international prize, such as the
AIPS Sport Media Awards, open to professionals from 160 countries?
prizes are always going to be nice, they look good on your CV and more
when in one or another way they explain who you are. I like that the
AIPS Sport Media Awards exist, I like that this journalist association
exists, because it is important to be together, to know how we think and
exchange ideas to improve. And I think the most praiseworthy is that
the prize comes from the hands of the same professionals who know you.
Many times someone can choose you because they see you on TV or listen
to you on the radio or read you, and consider that what you did was fine
maybe because you used their same words. I will not judge it here. But
when the award comes from the same professionals, from your colleagues
who are from 160 countries, it's different, it's special and the AIPS
prize that I have I really valued it and took it with a lot of pride
-How can a prize of this kind help future generations of journalists?
prize like this one in particular -and I am going to talk about what I
am seeing from the journalistic generations that are coming- can help
you to remember that this is called sport journalism. You do not
necessarily have to watch a magazine from the 1960s or to watch a TV
show from the 70s, to realise how sport journalism was much more active
before. Today there are more specialisations, and I do not see it badly,
but I think that this award means that we will remember that we are
sport journalists, that we do not cover just one discipline, and I think
it is something that today is confusing young generations who seek only
to get to broadcast a football game and succeed, when there are so many
sports, there is so much world outside and so much possibility of
having action in different places, and that is what they forget. These
Awards remind everyone that we are sport journalists, that we must have
the ability to cover many disciplines and do so with quality.
-Speaking of evolution, what’s your preferred format for consuming news?
am an information junkie and I usually consume everything: paper,
tablet, television, web and radio. I consume everything that generates
information, since I get up very early in the morning until I go to bed
at night I am constantly consuming what is within my reach. I try to be
traditional and I like to read the newspaper every morning, I like to
take the paper in my hands and if I cannot do it, I turn to technology. I
like to read opinion, I like to see information, I like to see styles,
and of course, along the way we make our preferences, and I also like to
generate the news, because as a journalist I do not like to be just
someone who reads news but someone who generate them.
-Which advice would you give to your younger self?
today I met Diego Arcos as a 17 or 18-year-old, I would say: This is
going to change a lot, get ready because what you think you know right
now is not going to be anything after a few years. This is going to be
one of the careers that are going to change more radically, so you have
no idea what's going to happen in the future.
-Between radio and writing, what do you like the most and why?
a difficult question, it's like asking me which son is my favourite.
When the pen flows and I say pen because now we do it in computers, but
when the pen or the letters flow is like to enter a spectacular
dimension, it is like to live in a sovereign world, just like when you
are in a comfortable radio studios and you can talk. I like both, no
matter how lyrical or diplomatic my answer sounds, I like both in a
special way, deep and powerful.
Interviewing Colombian coach Reinaldo Rueda.
-Have you ever been a victim of fake news in your career?
have an obsession with fake news and with denying them. Usually I am
seen as unfriendly because I do not believe anything people say, when
someone tells me something I always tell them, if your mom tells you she
loves you, check it out. I cover sport, but I also have a
specialisation in film, and I write about it and art and in the TV
channel where I worked, I have given the fake news department, because
they consider me a good denial or proof of this type of news. Yes, maybe
a couple of times some important media companies fell into some fake
news and I also thought it where real, like the little boy in Syria,
where have been said his brother had saved him, I believed that news and
then those who made it up came out to tell that it was a lie. If I was
part of a fake news? I believe that not until now, fortunately. I have
not fallen into what I consider today to be terrorism in communications.
you think that being more connected to the readers and listeners
through social media has made the profession better or more difficult?-I
believe that our work has more challenges and gave us more resources to
be able to work. I do not think it has flown easier or harder, it has
become more interesting, the options and challenges you have today have
grown, the number of people reporting, the amount of resources you have,
the amount of competition you have. But it seems to me that it became
more interesting, more valuable, and as it becomes more interesting it
shows you why you like it so much and why everyone is going to have
better information options.
Media Tribune is presented by AIPS
Sport Media Awards, a bridge to the future of sport journalism. Divided
in 6 main categories, the Awards are a celebration of the best sport
storytellers from around the world. Submissions for professionals are
free and open until September 17, 2018. Find more and submit your work