Hiring journalists takes time, focus, and innumerable phone calls to identify the rare person who speaks the language of technology and can explain it clearly to those who don't.
This summer brought a new hiring challenge for CNET: find the right leader for CNET en Español, a totally new site coming this fall that will bring CNET's entertaining and informative consumer tech news and advice to anyone who prefers to read, watch, and learn in Spanish. (In case you missed it, we announced the project at the CBS Interactive Newfronts earlier this year.)
The goal: find an editor who can write beautifully about gadgets and technology in both English and Spanish -- someone who both knows how to find the best laptop and also knows that en Español, as many people say "laptop" as "computadora portátil."
I'm happy to announce that we found that editor, and his name is Gabriel Sama.
Gabriel is the perfect editor for CNET en Español. He's a 20-year journalism veteran and recognized authority in bilingual media innovation in the US and abroad. He hails from the Columbia School of Journalism and a fellowship at Stanford's 2010 Knight Journalism program, and his career includes Spanish-language tech translating at the Wall Street Journal, as well as writing, translating, and launching and/or managing several newsrooms in the US, Latin America, Europe, and the Middle East. He was the founding editor of the Rumbo chain of newspapers in Texas, and he's also a US-based immigrant from Mexico who thinks, dreams, and writes in Spanish.
I'm excited that Gabriel will bring his passion for technology to the nearly 50 million people in the US who speak Spanish. Some of you may be one of the Spanish speakers, and maybe you already read about tech in English but would love to read about tech in your favorite language. Others may be totally new to CNET and need advice on finding the right tech.
As Gabriel says:
"Es justamente para ustedes...que hemos creado CNET en Español." -- It's just for you we're making CNET en Español.
He explains: "Al vivir en Estados Unidos tenemos acceso a cosas nuevas y diferentes. Entre ellas está la oportunidad de incorporar la tecnología de todo tipo a nuestra vida diaria, a precios asequibles y en todas las formas y colores disponibles. Parte de la experiencia de vivir aquí nos lleva a preguntarnos si nuestros hijos menores de edad deben de cargar celular para la escuela, o cuál es la mejor forma -- y más barata -- de comunicarnos a nuestros países de origen."
Roughly translated, that means: "Living in the United States gives access to new and different things -- among them the opportunity to incorporate all types of technology into our daily lives at affordable prices and in all shapes and colors. Part of the experience of living here is wondering whether our children need a cell phone for school, or what deciding the best, and cheapest, way to communicate with our friends and family in other countries."
We'll be launching CNET en Español soon -- this fall. At this very moment, Gabriel and his growing CNET team are busy creating a site that will deliver fresh, original Spanish-language stories, reviews, and videos starting very soon.
In the meantime, please get to know Gabriel and his team on our social media accounts.