El Universal (Mexico City)

El Universal is a Mexican newspaper based in Mexico City.

El Universal
Spanish: El gran diario de México
(Mexico's great newspaper)
TypeDaily newspaper
Founder(s)Félix Fulgencio Palavicini [es]
PresidentJuan Francisco Ealy Ortiz
EditorJuan Francisco Ealy Jr.
HeadquartersMexico City, Mexico


First issue of El Universal, published on 1 October 1916

El Universal was founded by Félix Palavicini [es] and Emilio Rabasa in October 1916, in the city of Santiago de Querétaro to cover the end of the Mexican Revolution and the creation of the new Mexican Constitution. The circulation of the print edition of El Universal is more than 300,000 readers.

In 2013 the El Universal website claimed to have an average of more than 16 million unique visitors each month, with 140 million page views, and 4 million followers on Facebook.[1]

Aviso Oportuno[2] is the classifieds service of El Universal. The brand has become widely known in Mexico, and the phrase Aviso Oportuno is sometimes used as a generic term for the classifieds business. This brand has four sub-sites: Inmuebles, Vehículos, Empleos and Varios (Real Estate, Vehicles, Jobs and Miscellaneous).

News items are open to reader comments through a simple sign-up system which has resulted in many accusations of bias and propaganda. The system also tends towards anonymity and abuse by having questionable users and operators pass as average readers discrediting political and journalistic adversaries.[3]


  • The publication has been accused by the political left in Mexico of having a cozy relationship with past governments during key periods in the nation's fraught history. The day after the Tlatelolco massacre on October 3, 1968, at the height of the Mexican Dirty War, El Universal published misleading headlines such as, «Terrorists and Soldiers Sustain Harsh Combat During Several Hours» and «Tlatelolco: Battle Camp». Under pressure, the editorial board gave a statement saying, "With pride, we can say that 'El Universal' adequately covered the facts during those days. Perhaps, like many of the publications of our era, we had too much confidence in the word of our government, but we've been honest."[4]
  • On December 3, 2012, political expert and city planner Andrés Lajous wrote a column in Animal Político justifying his exit from El Universal as the editorial board had modified the title of his column titled, «El robo de vehículos durante el gobierno de Peña Nieto» (the theft of cars during the government of Peña Nieto)",[5] referencing President Enrique Peña Nieto when he was the governor of the State of Mexico and his ties to the theft of vehicles. The column was published on April 13, 2012.[6] In his article, Lajous Loaza argues that when he tried to summon a response from the editors for the headline change, he was told that, "the decision was last minute and comes from the highers ups." He stated that he was promised a new headline, but that nothing ever came. Because of this incident, Lajous Loaeza resigned shortly thereafter as he felt he was not guaranteed the freedom to write critical pieces about the government without editorial interference.[7]
  • On December 25, 2017, The New York Times published an article titled, «Using Billions in Government Cash, Mexico Controls News Media»[8] signaling El Universal as the largest beneficiary of government funds in the form of publicity and, consequently, transforming the newspaper into an attack dog for the government in power during the elections of 2018 against its adversaries.[8] In response, the Mexican publication ran a story on December 26, 2017[9] in which they accuse the information obtained by The New York Times as false and biased.

See also



  1. ^ "Historia breve". eluniversal.com.mx (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 22 April 2018. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  2. ^ "Aviso oportuno: Legal notice". avisooportuno.mx (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 5 November 2017. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  3. ^ "The Not So Untested Battlegrounds of Comment Propaganda". Cosmopolitburo. 16 May 2011. [dead link]
  4. ^ "eluniversal.com.mx ::: México 68". archivo.eluniversal.com.mx. Archived from the original on 29 April 2022. Retrieved 5 July 2020.
  5. ^ Andrés Lajous. "lajous – robo de vehículos". docs.google.com. Archived from the original on 6 July 2020. Retrieved 5 July 2020.
  6. ^ Andrés Lajous (13 April 2012). "El robo de vehículos en Edomex". Archived from the original on 29 March 2019.
  7. ^ Andrés Lajous (3 December 2012). "Por qué dejé de escribir en El Universal". animalpolitico.com. Archived from the original on 4 July 2023. Retrieved 4 July 2023.
  8. ^ a b Ahmed, Azam (25 December 2017). "Using Billions in Government Cash, Mexico Controls News Media". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on 26 December 2017. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
  9. ^ "La verdad no se vende". El Universal (in Spanish). 26 December 2017. Archived from the original on 27 December 2017. Retrieved 26 December 2017.

Further reading