Mérida, 14th May 2012 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – Venezuelan alternative news website Aporrea.org reached its tenth anniversary today, marking a milestone in Venezuela’s Bolivarian revolution.
With over 100,000 visits per day and over 650 million in its lifetime, the site describes itself as “a trench of the grassroots revolutionary movement in Venezuela, and a space of information and expression of the popular struggle as much in Venezuela as the wider world”.
The site was born out of the Popular Revolutionary Assembly (APR), a gathering of activists and social movements in Caracas on 10 April 2002, which sought to counteract the right-wing opposition coup attempt against President Hugo Chavez and defend the country’s Bolivarian revolution.
After the coup was defeated on 13 April and Chavez returned to power, the APR continued to support revolutionary grassroots organisation. It advocated social control over media, the participatory role of the people in Venezuela’s politics, and the deepening of transformative political, social and economic government reforms.
With the slogan “grassroots communication for the construction of 21st century socialism,” on 14 May 2002 the Aporrea website was launched to continue the APR project.
Ten years on, Gonzalo Gomez, one of Aporrea’s founders, comments that while the site has faced a lack of resources it has never ceased to constantly inform the Venezuelan people. Run by collaborators and volunteers, users are able to publish their own articles and opinion pieces.
In a recent interview with Venezuelan newspaper Ciudad CCS, Gomez explained that it is not only individual users who write for the site, but that it is also utilised by numerous social organisations and collectives as their chosen media to release information.
Aporrea has also acted a space for criticism of problems and irregularities in the Bolivarian process, from the perspective of defending the Bolivarian revolution.
Rather than a program of events to celebrate its anniversary, the site is holding conversations with users and collaborators to look at ways of developing the page. Current plans include redesigning the site, increasing interaction with the public, launching a fundraising campaign, and making more use of video.
In its own article marking the decade anniversary, Aporrea states its wish “to ratify our commitment with the Venezuelan revolutionary process and the struggles of the peoples of the world”.