BY MANNY RUIZ

It was a bizarre time for us at Hispanicize last week.  Barely days after our Hispanicize 2011 conference, certain people who we do not even know took to personally attacking us, falsely accusing us of having a secret partnership with folks from one social media organization, hating on our friends at BeingLatino and much worse.

Our policy is not to respond to unfounded accusations because we believe the body of our work over almost THREE YEARS speaks for itself: two leading online content platforms covering Latino social media (Hispanicize) and public relations (Hispanic PR Blog) as well as two highly acclaimed national conferences that have pioneered the Latino social media space. 

Other organizations have clarified their position so our industry friends have recommended that we make our own clarifications: 

Hispanicize will not condone, support or even retweet any public attacks against other organizations, individuals or companies.  A lot of Latino organizations and people get attacked online all the time but as a matter of principle we do not repost, rebroadcast or retweet anything about them because that’s the same as creating or supporting those things being published.  As an industry colleague wrote recently, shame on those who stir divisions.  

Despite being a for-profit, Hispanicize we will not waver in our commitment to Latino bloggers and social media marketing professionals.  As our own conference modeled for the world recently, we will continue to build online and offline forums for collaboration and unity in this growing space and we will continue to provide these communities with countless free, professional development services because these tools are needed.  This belief is what compels us to produce the annual Hispanic Social Media Guide, the yearlong Latino Blogger Training Series and the Hispanic Social Media Insights Webinars series, among other things.

Hispanicize will continue to provide thought leadership content that helps propel ALL Latina and Latino bloggers forward regardless of whether they blog for personal, private or business gain.  We do this because we are passionately committed to helping ALL Latino bloggers – English and Spanish-language – succeed as citizen voices.

Despite being a for-profit, Hispanicize will also continue to provide the Latino community organizations with in-depth initiatives that serve and empower them.  Our national Latino Social Media For Social Good program, for example, provides unprecedented full day communications and social media training to non-profits serving Latino communities in eight major cities starting in June.  This major initiative is foundational to who we are and what we will continue to be.

Hispanicize will not shy from our commitment to provide marketers with the facts and resources they need to make informed decisions about Latino social media.  We do not pretend for one second to have all the answers but we won’t allow that to stop us from examining the issues and trends that impact Latino social media. 

The Latino social media space is maturing and will mature.  People have suggested that one party or another has preposteriously claimed they “own” this space.  I hadn’t heard that until recently but what’s interesting is that we have deliberately it seems to me that if our recent conference didn’t promote unity, collaboration and partnership in our community in the fullest way possible with many of the leading social media voices in attendance in one place at one time, nothing else can.  

One last thought – Hispanicize is growing and evolving so don’t put us in a box.  We will continue to change and we will try new and innovative things.  Some will succeed and others won’t.  Hispanicize doesn’t have the corner on the best ideas by a long shot but we will put big ideas in motion and we will collaborate with many of you along the way.  In this long and ongoing process, we hope you will judge us by the fruit of our labor.