The newspaper with more circulation in Spain, El País, has eliminated from its printed edition the bullfighting section that has been traditional for decades. Although the section will continue in its online edition, it has been losing reader’s interest, so it has been gradually reducing the number of bullfighting chronicles.
The anti-bullfighting animal protection organisation Animanatularis has said “This is good news for journalism and animals because it stops promoting among the public a section that had, increasingly, more detractors. Bullfighting continues to lose presence in the general media, which will depend, increasingly, on strong injections of money by companies that organise bullfighting shows.”
In 1995, El País published more than 1,000 articles on bullfighting, but in 2019 there were only 150. Since 1st January 2022, only six articles have been published. The digital edition has declined from 800 articles in 2015 to 440 in 2019, and 87 so far in 2022.
Bullfighting is constantly losing its presence in the mainstream media. In the case of Spanish Television, the broadcasting has gone up and down depending on whether the government was right or left-wing, respectively. In April of this year, eleven parties registered an amendment to the draft General Law on Audio-visual Communication to prevent by law the broadcasting of bullfights on television during children’s hours (between six in the morning and ten at night). The political parties that have presented such amendment are Unidas Podemos, Esquerra Republicana, EH Bildu, Junts per Catalunya, PDeCAT, CUP, Más País-Verdes-Equo, BNG, Compromís, Nueva Canarias and Teruel Existe. The text of the amendment, promoted by the animal parliamentary group Asociación Parlamentaria en Defensa de los Derechos de los Animales (Apdda) says, “broadcasting, previews, announcements, summaries or promotion of shows in which animals are mistreated or killed will be considered harmful content…To prevent the harmful effects of bullfighting on children, the Committee recommends that the State prohibits the participation of children under the age of 18 as bullfighters, and as audience members in bullfighting shows.”