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Fellows' Papers
Practice of Journalism Digital Media
North America

Fashionable Destination? The Making of Cuba as a Business Opportunity and Tourist Destination in U.S. Online Media

On 17 December 2014, the Cuban and the American Presidents Raúl Castro and Barack Obama made historic statements which started a new chapter of bilateral relations devoted to enhancing economic and social ties.

Although the embargo (or blockade as it is known in the island) on Cuba has not been lifted by the U.S. Congress, two areas of relations between the neighbouring countries have been of particular interest since the announcement: U.S. investment in Cuba and U.S. tourism to Cuba.

Yosley Carrero Chávez, a journalist at Cuban state television, has written an exhaustive study, Fashionable Destination? The Making of Cuba as a Business Opportunity and Tourist Destination in U.S. Online Media, which explores the coverage of these two themes in a selection of US media. 

He presents the results of a detailed content analysis applied to 231 news stories in online editions of the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Miami Herald, and the Tampa Bay Times between 17 December and 24 December 2014.

Among Yosley’s many conclusions are that the New York Times presented the most favourable portrayal of Cuba as a business opportunity and tourist destination. In contrast, although negative reactions to the thaw had a greater presence in Florida media outlets, the Washington Post editorials were the most critical of Obama’s new policy towards Cuba.