Miami Herald Correspondent Falsely Highlighted in Venezuelan Tourism Poster –
A Miami Herald correspondent was falsely highlighted in a Venezuelan tourism poster after being detained for 48 hours.
Jim Wyss, an American journalist based out of Bogota, Columbia is the man pictured in the ad. According to a Miami Herald article Wyss was detained in Venezuela for 48 hours after failing to have the proper media credentials.
The Latin American multimedia platform, TeleSur, released the campaign to boost tourism to the country of Venezuela last month. The poster released was captioned “We love Venezuela…for receiving foreigners like our own.” The photo used in the false advertisement was actually Wyss embracing a fellow Miami Herald employee in the Miami Airport after finally returning home from Caracas in late 2013.
The origin of the ad was the countries hope to boost Venezuela’s struggling economy through money from tourism. Interest in Venezuela’s economy is what created troubles for Wyss.
According to Wyss he was digging for statistics on contraband in the country and was directed by several sources to direct his questions to the Bolivarian National Guard who controls the border.
Things began well in the meeting according to Wyss, but his troubles soon escalated and lasted around 48 hours until director of immigration, Juan Carlos Dugarte, released him.
Wyss recounted his experience in an article published by the Miami Herald.
He explained that he had made a dozen reporting trips to Venezuela without serious problems until this specific trip.
TeleSur took down the picture with no comment on the reason why the photo taken by a Miami Herald photographer was used for their campaign according to a Telegraph UK article.
“Hilarious” and “bizarre” are the words Wyss used in reaction to the Venezuelan tourist poster according to The Telegraph report.
Venezuela’s need for this tourist boost is in response to an economic crisis.
It seems as if TeleSur was looking to send a positive message to attract those abroad to the country…they just chose an interesting way to go about it.