Latinflare Presents: What is Latin America?
This Cinco de Mayo, join Latinflare, Cloudflare's Latinx Employee Resource Group, as we showcase the diversity of Latin America. Most think of the region as one large block. We will highlight differences in a region with shared culture and history!
Hello and thanks for joining us on Cloudflare TV. My name is Amada Echeverria and I'm on the field marketing and events team here at Cloudflare and I'm the moderator for today's discussion.
We're excited about the special panel conversation presented by Latinflare, Cloudflare's employee resource group for Latinx employees, the mission of which is to help create a more diverse workplace, create a sense of community and belonging for Latinx employees and connect with the communities where we work.
I'm here with an amazing group of panelists who, as you will see, although all Latinx, are not all the same.
We'll be answering the question, what is Latin America, from our perspectives in an effort to showcase the diversity of Latin America.
Most think of the region as one large block. We will highlight differences in a region with shared culture and history.
Felicia, Neil, Krystal, Paul, Annel, thank you all so much for joining us on Cloudflare TV.
Before we dive in further, a quick note for our viewers, we hope you'll join in by sending us your comments and questions by emailing us at livestudio at Cloudflare .tv.
You can find the banner right below this video. So, welcome to the panel. Let's start off with quick introductions.
Please tell us your name, your role at Cloudflare, what office you would be in if you weren't remote, and your nationality or heritage, whichever you feel more comfortable answering.
So, Felicia, we'll start with you.
Okay, my name is Felicia or Felicia, depending on who's talking to me, it's with the accent.
I was born in San Francisco. I am Mexican and Nicaraguan and daughter of immigrants.
Thank you. And Neil, what about you? Hi, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, everyone.
Neil Sanchez, or Neil Sanchez, if it's in Spanish.
I'm a customer assistance manager based out of the San Francisco office. I was born in New York City, raised in Dominican Republic, and I'm very proud to say I'm Dominican.
Fantastic. Paul? Hi, I'm Paul Caesar, or Paul. I was born in Brazil, and I'm a digital marketing manager.
And now I'm in the Austin office. I moved from the San Francisco office about eight months ago.
Thank you. And Crystal?
I'm Crystal or Crystal. I'm Mexican American born in Chicago to Mexican immigrant parents.
I am a software delivery manager and based out of Austin. Thank you.
And Anel? Hi, I'm Anel. I am an inbound business development representative based out of Munich office here in Germany, but I'm born and raised in Mexico.
Great, thank you all for sharing. So I know from discussions with, you know, other Latinx folks that describing someone as Latin American certainly has its shortfalls.
And some folks feel that it's simplistic and a catchall for a rich and intricate spectrum of identities and ethnicities that really mean different things to different people.
So you might not even identify as Latin American per se yourself, but rather with your country of origin, or that of your parents, or maybe you do identify as Latin American or Latinx.
So the goal for today is to explore our differences while also celebrating what brings us together.
So let's dive in.
To start off, where were you born? And also, where were you raised, which of course, might not be the same.
So Anel, let's start with you. Sure. I was born in New York City, specifically Washington Heights.
Very, they call it little Dominican Republic out there.
But I was raised in the Dominican Republic. And I was always, as I was growing up, I was going back and forth between New York City and the Dominican Republic.
Okay. And Paul? I was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil. But I did live in Rio and Puerto Lago, the southern state.
And I moved to the States to go to college quite a while ago.
Okay. Crystal. I was born in Chicago and like mostly grew up in Illinois.
But similar to Anel, my family was always going back and forth between Illinois and in Mexico.
Thank you. And Anel? I was born and raised in Mexico in the northern part of the country.
But I live in Germany for nine years now.
Okay. And Felicia? So I was born and raised in San Francisco, but in the Mission District.
So the primary, it's very different now since tech came into San Francisco, but it was very much a Spanglish neighborhood.
And my family traveled in packs, like most of the families.
And it was primarily all Latino families.
Okay. All right. Thank you all for sharing. So our next question was inspired from the fact that, so I'm from Miami, but my parents are Mexican.
So I identify as Mexican.
So I'm curious, what regions are your parents from? And do you identify in the same way as they do or in your own unique way?
And we can start with Paul.
Both my parents are Brazilian. My mom was born in Rio, my dad in Sao Paulo, but my dad's side of the family, they like at least five or six generations born in Sao Paulo.
So I'm definitely a Paulista, someone who was born in Sao Paulo. Okay. And thank you.
And Crystal? Yeah, I would say I identify as Mexican as well, but born in the US and just always been back and forth.
So I would say, yeah, I identify most as Mexican.
Okay. And Felicia? Yeah. So on my dad's side, I'm Nicaraguan and my grandmother came apparently, which I didn't find out until we did all our genetic testing and everything that she's from Mazatlan, which I still haven't been yet.
Wonderful. And Neil? Yeah. Both my parents are Dominican. They were born in a city called El Sibal, which is up on the Northern part of Dominican Republic, more on the countryside.
Unfortunately, I've never been there by the time I was born, the youngest of five siblings, we had already moved to New York about 10 years before I was born, but I will visit someday.
Thank you for sharing. So what languages? Oh, I'm sorry. Sorry about that.
Yeah. I guess I had to also compliment that from my side, both parents from the North part of Mexico, I actually really identify with this region, which is like very unique and a bit different from the rest of Mexico.
So Mexican brought like North of Mexico.
All right. Sorry about that. I think I wasn't following along properly.
And thank you for sharing. So what languages did you speak at home growing up?
And did Spanglish have any place in the home or not? So Crystal, let's start with you.
Yeah, for us, it was both English because of school. But then, you know, we spoke Spanish in the house.
Spanglish wasn't super common for us. And Anil?
Yeah, totally Spanish, 100%. All right. And Felicia? Since we all had different families that we came from, it was definitely primarily Spanglish.
Prayers only in Spanish, that was very strict rule.
But a lot of Spanglish. And I think when I was younger, I didn't, there were some words that I didn't know in English, and I only knew the Spanish word for, especially if they were inappropriate.
And Anil? Definitely the omen to Spanglish. Being the youngest of five siblings who were already in New York speaking the language.
There was a lot of Spanglish going on in my household.
All right, great. And Paul? Yeah, Portuguese. But growing up, my dad, he was an exchange student back in the 60s in the US.
So he had a lot of exposure to English.
And all my siblings have lived in the US at one point in their lives.
Okay, great. So our next question is, what do you think unites us as Latin American?
And what brings us together as sort of a common denominator? So, for example, Brazilians speak a different official language than the rest of Latin America's official language, but I think are obviously definitely still very much a part of LATAM.
So curious to hear what you think, what brings us together and unites us all these different countries.
So Anil? So I think that the Latin culture brings us bring us together, since it is very warm, family oriented, and open to people and has a very traditional culture.
Great. And Felicia? Yeah, I mean, I have, again, a mixture of cousins.
I have first cousins who are Peruvian, first cousins who are Puerto Rican, it was all over the place.
So for family, it was just about being together, music.
And it was great that everybody brought different food all the time.
So I was able to experience all of the cultures every time, but just in our, you know, family parties.
Great. And Anil? Yeah, I'm sure we can all agree with everything that brings us together here.
But for me, specifically, from first experience was the music, being born into a family of musicians, I, and then eventually I was in a few bands myself.
That definitely, that definitely united people.
So merengue, bachata, reggaeton, vallenato, cumbia, everything, everyone loves.
Great. And Paul? Same thing, very family oriented parties.
Soccer is a big one. That's part of, I think, most, pretty much every Latin American culture.
Brazil. All right. And Crystal? Yeah, I mean, I, again, I agree with everyone here.
I'd say also, you know, music, food, family, and just kind of the, the really warmth and affection that the Latino people share is really unites us.
All right. Great. Thank you. Okay. So on to our next question. What is something that people often get wrong about you or about your country of origin?
So to take myself as an example, so like I said, my family's from Mexico, from Mexico City, and I was born there.
And a lot of people assume that it's on the beach or that it's very hot.
And they'll say, oh, can I, can I go visit you? Can I, can I want to spend some time on the beach with you and your family?
But you know, Mexico City is cold.
It's in the mountains, actually in a valley. So I feel like a lot of folks think Latin America is just one big beach.
So what sorts of stereotypes have you heard about your home when you tell people you're a Latinx?
And what do they get wrong about where you're from?
Felicia? Yeah, well, first of all, nobody knows what Nicaragua is and where it is.
And even my son wears a sweatshirt that says Nicaragua and people are just like, what is that?
So he wears that to school. But, you know, and my in-laws are Italian Irish, and they were asking, you know, if Nicaragua was near Portugal.
So I think it's kind of just all one big, whatever the countries are down there.
And, you know, I really, you know, hate that a lot of people bring up the stereotypes.
You know, I'm supposed to know how to cook, have a ton of kids.
I did have a ton of kids. But, you know, I'm supposed to be this stereotype.
So that's I wish we could do away with. But it's always nice when you do something unexpected as well to go against those stereotypes.
Great. And Neil?
Yeah, like yourself, I always get the, oh, Dominican, yeah, from Punta Cana, right?
This is an uncle went up that went there. And unfortunately, everyone thinks that Dominican Republic is a big resort.
Very far from it, although that would be nice, though.
You can relate to that. And Paul? Yeah, I still I still get to this day Spanish, people think I speak Spanish.
Everyone thinks every Brazilian can somebody dance really well.
Not my case. Also, people might think that every Brazilian supermodel will marry like this average football player in America, like Tom Brady's wife, Giselle, or Brazil is related to things that I know nothing about, like aesthetic procedures, really to lifts or waxes, but I get that all the time.
Okay. And that's funny. And Crystal? Yeah, I feel like I can relate to Amada and Neil as well.
Like when I say my family's from Mexico, a lot of people think it's, you know, beach tropical, but my parents actually from two from rural villages in the mountains, like ones from the south.
And, you know, within their their own families, they have very unique foods and different traditions and cultures.
So I think people tend to stereotype, you know, Mexicans are like Latinos, like to one thing that they might see on TV or whatnot.
All right, thank you.
And Anel? Well, yeah, I also come from Mexico. And most of my friends also think that all Mexicans this Caribbean beach with really warm weather and palms everywhere.
But I actually come from the northern part of Mexico. And it is it is the desert of Sonora.
So it could be very warm in summer, like up to 50 degrees. So you really see like many cactus here and there and also palms everywhere.
And we also have beaches with a great contrast of sea and desert and desert.
But yeah, in general, like being from Mexico or being Mexico such a big country, we have the fortune to have a very diverse climate and regions.
So it's very rich. Not everything is just the sea and palms, but it's very diverse.
Great, thank you for sharing. So similar question, but instead of, you know, speaking to the place of origin, it has a bit more of a personal twist.
What common misconceptions do people have about being Latinx?
And so more of an identity question, and what can you share with the audience to set the record straight?
So Neil, we'll start with you. Yeah, being a Dominican, we don't all play baseball.
First of all, I appreciate baseball very much.
Grew up around it. I can swing a bat here and there, but definitely not at the intercultural professional level.
But for me, it's different accents, even within the same country, the same culture, we can have different accents, because I know I speak differently than my mom and my dad speak, just because they were raised in the northern part of Dominican Republic, where I was more in the central area.
And Paul? Yeah, so one thing that I agree is like, being like extroverted and being like the life of the party.
Not my case. And I've even heard from many of my Latino friends that I'm no Latino, because I don't fit to those stereotypes.
Can't relate to that as well.
And Crystal? Yeah, I mean, these are all, I would agree with a lot of these, you know, words, dialects, like also food is very regional, even within a particular country.
And um, yeah, I'm not the greatest dancer either.
But people might think that I am just stereotypes.
And one too, that bothers me sometimes is, you know, a lot of people think Latinos are always late, which we may or may not be, but not all the time.
Definitely can relate to the always being late, I think. I know, in some cases, it's considered rude to be on time.
So that's a bit cultural, but obviously not applicable to everyone.
And Anel? Yeah, I totally agree with all of you.
Latinos are not all loud and extroverted. I have the feeling that many things of us is very super exotic, and always like in a party mode with tequila bottle in our hands, just in case.
But I consider also myself like super calm and relaxed.
And not all Mexicans come from Mexico City. Mexico is huge. So that's also a misconception.
Absolutely. Thank you. And Felicia? Yeah, I didn't especially hard time fighting stereotypes, because my dad is a musician, and his friends are, were famous growing up in Santana.
And so I was always around all of these extroverts.
And I, you know, not everybody's like that, you know, I'd rather be home reading a book.
And same thing with the drinking, we're not all heavy drinkers.
I think that's a very big misconception. But everybody's got different family language, politics, education levels.
So that's definitely something that's talked about often.
Got it. Thank you all for sharing. So Latin American, Latino, Latina, and Latinx are not considered racial terms, but instead describe ethnic and cultural origins.
And these terms also include, you know, indigenous Latinas, Asian, Latin Americans, Afro Hispanics, and white Latinxs.
So it's quite a comprehensive term, but because it might be a bit broad, some folks maybe don't use these terms, rather, other use these terms to describe them.
And you might prefer to use more specific descriptors that you feel are more relevant to your personal identity.
For example, Hicho or Richa for Salvadorians, Waricuas for Puerto Ricans, Chicanos, Chicanas, Chicanx for those of Mexican descent.
So is there another term that you identify with more closely? And why?
And you can answer this however you feel comfortable. So Paul? Yeah, obviously, it depends what form I'm filling out.
But usually I go, and I think that this form has been improving, they're better, like check multiple boxes, because with white and Latino, because that's what I've been told many times.
But I usually say that I'm Brazilian.
Oh, that's interesting that maybe you're forced to check a box that you don't even feel applies to you.
That's unfortunate. And Crystal?
Uh, yeah, I guess for me, it kind of depends when I'm, you know, in the US or amongst like friends and family in the US, I say I'm Mexican, because that's the language and food and culture that I was raised in at home.
But then when I'm in Mexico, you know, my relatives say that we're either Mexican American kind of because we grew up in the US too.
So and then I don't know if anyone else has had this experience while traveling internationally.
But a few times, you know, people have asked me, where are you from?
Or where do you live? And I say the US and they're like, yeah, but where are you from?
Because like, I'm brown. And they just like, don't imagine other non white people living in the US.
And then I usually say, Oh, I'm, you know, I'm Mexican Afghans from Mexico.
And they're like, Oh, you know, so I don't know, I've had that experience happen a lot, actually.
Thank you for sharing and Anel. And for me, just Latina or Mexican is enough.
I think that's a good description, being in Europe or in Germany. So I think it's just enough to say Mexican.
Got it. And Felicia? Yeah, somebody asked me, I'll just say, you know, Nicaraguan Mexican, but I think the, you know, I definitely identify as Chicana.
And, you know, very, it's very important to me that people know that I'm indigenous to where I stand right now.
I think people always ask me, they're like, where are you really from?
And in California, especially, I'm just like, I'm actually from right here.
And I get frustrated every time my kids do fourth grade California history, because they don't share any of that.
So, you know, it's kind of like something that could be reinforced in education, and it's not.
But you know, I'll tell my kids what they are.
And they'll just understand that it's too far for some people to understand for a while.
But hopefully someday. Got it. My parents love to talk about how Mexico, how California and different states used to be part of Mexico.
So the history teachers didn't teach us that they definitely did. And Neil?
Yeah, um, I guess I'm kind of even split. I'm very much American and Dominican.
I served in the United States Navy and everything. But whenever I would tell people I'm American, that still happens every once in a while, they asked me where I was born.
I was in New York. Okay, and they kind of walk away like, yeah, but you have an accent, but it's not from New York.
Okay, I'm Dominican. And then they get it.
So to clear all that up, I just say I'm Dominican. And I'm okay with that.
Right. All right. Thank you. Thank you all for sharing. So most of us speak English, Spanish, Portuguese and Latin America.
And of course, there are, you know, thousands of indigenous languages, I'm just speaking to the official ones, maybe primarily used for business, etc.
And language is very nuanced.
And many countries and regions have their own slang or dialects. So what sorts of words do you often use, if any, that some of your friends or colleagues from other countries might not understand?
For me, it's usually when I say que padre, which means that's so cool.
Maybe not everyone knows what that means. So we can start with you, Crystal.
Yeah, for me, in, you know, Mexican Spanish, we use the word mandela.
And many Spanish people might know that it's used a lot in Mexican culture.
And, you know, the literal translation is to command. But we use it more of like, you know, what, or can you repeat that?
Or what do you mean? But it's, I remember growing up, I mean, we were always told to use that when, you know, especially when an elder person was talking to us, because it's like more respectful.
So yeah, I'd say that's my one of my words. And Anel, what about you? Yeah, I agree.
I also use a lot que padre with all of my friends, from different cultures, and they just kind of pretend they understood, because I'm always very excited.
And que ondas? Like to say, how are you doing? What's up? Yeah. Great. And Felicia?
Unfortunately, my Mexican grandmother did not encourage us to learn how to speak Spanish.
So a lot of just phrases, like I said, mostly inappropriate from going to elementary school in San Francisco Mission District, where everybody spoke Spanish, but mostly just Spanglish.
All right, thank you. And Neil? Yeah, I can go for days on this one.
But we do have a saying, it kind of evolves every once in a while, sometimes things, you know, fashionable, street words or whatever.
But we say que lo que, which basically means, what's up? How you doing? And we can abbreviate that, we put que lo que, if you want to text that.
Like that, great.
And Paul? Yeah, like, not many, not words, but like, growing up, because I grew up in so many different states with very different accents.
Even Brazilians can really pinpoint where I'm from within Brazil.
Even Americans, sometimes they cannot, like, we'd have an accent, but where are you from?
And I get the where are you from, from question all the time, too.
Like, no, no, no, Cristal mentioned, where are you from, from?
All right. Thank you for sharing. And what, what question are you most tired of hearing about being Latinx?
And what would you like to say to the audience? So you never, have to answer it again.
Hopefully, everyone in the world is listening.
So Anel. Food related question.
Is all the food spicy in Mexico? And no, it's not, by the way.
And another question is, why tequila has a worm inside? Which is also not true. Oh, well, it is.
So tequila is a type of mezcal, but mezcal is not tequila. Just a quick introduction.
And only mezcal has a worm. I had to research it, actually. I didn't even know.
But it's just, at the end, it's just a marketing strategy. So I don't consider it very Mexican.
But it's a question that comes up very often. Mm. Got it.
And Felicia. Yeah, going back to, can you cook? I do not cook. I obviously spent way too much time just enjoying my abuelita's food and not paying attention.
But now my husband loves my culture so much.
He's actually much better. I mean, it doesn't take much, but he's getting deep into like cooking everything from scratch, especially Mexican food.
Great. And Neil. Yeah. Just earlier when I talked about Punta Cana, they think that everyone comes to Punta Cana.
I've never met anyone that was born in Punta Cana.
It's very much a resort town. And just like any place you go where you get into that nice resort, you go to these really sketched places.
And like, yeah, I'm glad I wasn't born here. But I get the question, are you Dominican Republican?
It's not Dominican Republican. It's, are you Dominican? That's simple.
Got it. Thank you. I'm just laughing because recently someone asked my friend if she was Guatemalese.
So yeah, hope folks learn the proper terms. And Paul.
Yeah, I get the, do you speak Spanish all the time? And I learned to just reply with do you speak any random language?
Do you speak Japanese? Like, no, I speak Portuguese.
I get confused why I asked if they speak Japanese. Anyway, all the time still.
Yeah. Mine is, do you like spicy food? And I do, but not all Mexicans love spicy food.
And like Anel said, not all Mexican food is spicy. All right, got it.
So on to our next question, have you done your DNA test? And was it different from what your parents told you?
So Felicia, we can start with you. Yeah, so my, my Nicaraguan grandfather was adopted.
So we had no idea about his heritage. And the math works out that he is half, or was half African.
And so it's fun learning about specific countries that 23andMe has identified.
And so now I'm even more curious.
I'm in my 40s and learning about my heritage for the first time. All right. Thank you.
And Neil. Yeah, I haven't done it, but my cousin did. We're about the same age.
And it turns out that apparently, from my father's side, I'm 35% African, which I could believe.
And we also, my grandfather was also born in Sevilla, Spain, which is kind of common in Dominican Republic, a lot of Spanish families there.
It's a lot of Spanish influence. But I didn't know I felt in that side of the of the generation.
That was interesting. And Paul.
I have done it. And I was not very surprised. It says that I'm 87% Southern European.
So like Italian and Portuguese, and some from Spain, but I was very surprised at 3% Native American.
I have no idea why. And Crystal. I have not done one of these tests yet, but I'd really like to.
So I think I'm going to do one soon after this.
All right. And Anel. Yeah, same as Crystal. I haven't done one, but I'm super tempted to do one, to be honest.
All right. Thank you all for your answers.
And so since we're celebrating Cinco de Mayo today, and it might not represent or mean what you think it does.
And when I say you, I mean the audience. So given it might have a nuanced meaning, what does Cinco de Mayo mean to you?
And what traditions did you have around it, if any?
Maybe none, maybe yes. So Anel, I can start with you.
Yeah, for me, it's just a time for friends and family to get together.
You know, the whole planning of like, hey, let's honor this day. Let's eat some Mexican food and find a great place and all sit on a big table and have margaritas.
Fortunately, this holiday is not reserved only for Mexicans. So happy to hear that because I've never been kicked out of a Cinco de Mayo party.
I've had a great time too.
That's great to hear. And Paul. Good question. What is Cinco de Mayo?
I'm part of the audience. I just, I remember asking some friends and they, Mexicans are like, oh, we don't celebrate that in Mexico.
I've heard that many times.
But I don't actually, no, I fail. Got it. I believe it celebrates a specific battle that the Mexicans army won versus over the French army.
But yeah, in Mexico, it's I mean, I'm sure the other panelists will speak to this, but it's not a huge deal in Mexico.
So and Crystal. Yeah, I mean, similar to what Amara said, it's not as celebrated in Mexico, but having grown up in the US, we celebrated it a lot with family again, just the time to celebrate, you know, our Mexican roots and culture.
And we do like a carne asada or barbecue and have margarita and chips and like guacamole and stuff and just, yeah, have a good time with family and friends.
And Anel. Yeah, so I have to confirm that it's actually not a big deal for Mexicans.
Yeah, it's a national holiday. And we have the day off to spend like with family and friends.
But the real meaning is actually not known by many, as I can confirm here.
Um, because many think that it's like kind of an Independence Day, because it's like a huge party, a huge celebration.
But we actually commemorate the date of the Mexican army's victory over France at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, which is also known as Battle of Puebla Day.
Um, it was a good day, a big day, but it's like not like an Independence Day or a huge celebration, at least for Mexicans.
All right. And Felicia. Yeah, I think growing up in an immigrant neighborhood in the US, I think it was just a time to, you know, celebrate the culture.
And, you know, Americans in general love Mexican food. So it's nice to have a day where everyone's really positive about Mexicans.
And sometimes it can, you know, be negative a lot of the time.
And, you know, for my kids and my family, you know, it's just about like enjoying food and drinks, but they're going to be tortured because I'm going to blast my abuela's music later.
And I feel like sometimes they like it, sometimes they don't like it, but it's happening either way.
All right. Thank you all. And what, what was or what is your favorite dish?
And or what was your favorite dish growing up? And currently any favorite Latin American foods and might be the same answer or not?
And Paul? I really like Brazilian barbecue, the big chunk of meat, some of those big skewers.
Have some places in the States that we can eat.
I also like Texcan, Texan barbecue, but my wife always says, like, how can you guys eat meat every day?
That's what I like.
All right, got it. And Crystal? I like a lot of food. As Paul said, I used to live in Brazil.
So I really enjoy Brazilian barbecue and pão de queijo too. And then both my parents are phenomenal cooks.
So basically anything they make is is really, really good.
But my favorite dish is one called sopes. Definitely burritos and or tacos de carne asada or steak tacos, which is like our fast food.
We call or I call it that every day. Quesadillas any time of the day and homemade will be gallina pinta, which is a soup with meat, beans and different vegetables.
Super tasty. Sounds great. And Felicia? Right now I'm obsessed with getting molcajete.
I think that was my comfort food during the pandemic, like to keep getting that and feeling like I was bringing happiness into the house.
But I grew up with like really simple food, like rice, beans, some kind of meat and platanos.
Like anytime I have platanos, I think of my grandmother. So simple things. Right.
And Neil? I love platanos, by the way. We have a thing called platano power. We have a dish called lavandera, which is basically means a flag.
And it's steak, flank steak, rice and beans.
So arroz habichuelas, which is the same as frijoles, for people to know as well.
And rice. So basically, it sounds very simple, but the Dominican spices for me are very unique.
And it's very well represented. And those just three items there, which you always people will look at you really weird if you give them a plate of arroz habichuelicana and don't put a little slice of avocado on the side.
What's the avocado? Avocado. Also, we cook the rice a little bit different.
We add a little bit of oil, which kind of creates this crunchy base on the bottom.
It's like rice kind of fries on the bottom. And we call it con con or raspado, which basically means you scrape the bottom of the rice thing.
And it's nice, greasy.
Not to have too often, because you can get it to your arteries. But it's good to have every once in a while.
All right. It's getting me hungry. Thank you all for sharing.
And so let's do a rapid fire round. Salsa or guacamole? Crystal?
Guacamole. Anel? Oh, I think you're immune.
Guacamole. Felicia? Yeah, guacamole. Okay. I love both, but I'll go with salsa.
Okay. Paul? Salsa. Got it. Sandwiches or tacos? Anel? Tacos.
Felicia? Tacos. Neil? It's a tough one, but I love sandwiches. I've always loved sandwiches.
Paul? Taco bell. Crystal?
Tacos. Okay. And wine or mezcal? Felicia? Reposado. Yeah. I'm going to disagree with all of that.
Neil? Good mezcal will be my choice. Paul? I'll go with guaraná Brazilian pop.
Not an option, but respected. Crystal? I like both, but wine is my comfort beverage.
Fair, fair. And Anel? Taking to mezcal, definitely. Okay.
Last rapid fire question. Oprah Winfrey or Walter Mercado? I love this one.
I'm sure Walter Mercado, remember what he used to say when he would say goodbye?
Mucho, mucho, mucho amor. Paul?
I was going to say Maria del Barrio, but it's an option. Keeping it in the pattern of answering with not an option, that could have been a good one.
Crystal? Walter Mercado.
I feel like he was always on in the background at my grandparents' house, or whenever I go to my aunt's and uncle's house, it's just always there in the background.
All right. And Anel? Yeah, totally agree. Walter Mercado, because he was definitely part of the Latino culture, with his super extroverted personality and appearance.
All right. And Felicia? Yeah, Mercado. I mean, he was so over the top, just so much fun.
And I don't know about you, but I was shushed at the end of his, you know, when he was doing his last closing, I was not allowed to talk.
Nobody was allowed to talk.
There's one that I would like to add, because I think we can all relate to it.
Salvador Gigante, Don Francisco, always in the background. Same. Absolutely.
Definitely loved him. All right. So on that note, I want to bring this conversation about diversity in Latin America to close.
And thank our panel for sharing your thoughts and insights with us today.
I think this has been a really valuable conversation and at the end, really fun.
And I know some of these topics around identity can be very personal.
So thank you so much for being open to sharing.
I hope it's provided a broader spectrum of what it can mean to be Latin American and Latinx.
And a big thanks to everyone as well for tuning into Cloudflare TV and providing the space to hold this conversation.
So Felicia, Crystal, Paul, Anel, Neil, thank you all so much.
And stay tuned for the other Cinco de Mayo programming from Latin Flare.
And until next time. Thank you. Thank you.
Thank you, Cinco de Mayo. The real privilege of working at Mozilla is that we're a mission driven organization.
And what that means is that before we do things, we ask what's good for the users as opposed to what's going to make the most money.
Mozilla's values are similar to Cloudflare's.
They care about enabling the web for everybody in a way that is secure, in a way that is private, and in a way that is trustworthy.
We've been collaborating on improving the protocols that help secure connections between browsers and websites.
Mozilla and Cloudflare have collaborated on a wide range of technologies.
The first place we really collaborated was the new TLS 1.3 protocol, and then we followed that up with QUIC and DNS server HTTPS, and most recently, the new Firefox private network.
DNS is core to the way that everything on the Internet works.
It's a very old protocol, and it's also in plain text, meaning that it's not encrypted.
And this is something that a lot of people don't realize.
You can be using SSL and connecting securely to websites, but your DNS traffic may still be unencrypted.
When Mozilla was looking for a partner for providing encrypted DNS, Cloudflare was a natural fit.
The idea was that Cloudflare would run the server piece of it, and Mozilla would run the client piece of it, and the consequence would be that we'd protect DNS traffic for anybody who used Firefox.
Cloudflare was a great partner with this because they were really willing early on to implement the protocol, stand up a trusted recursive resolver, and create this experience for users.
They were strong supporters of it. One of the great things about working with Cloudflare is their engineers are crazy fast.
So the time between we decide to do something, and we write down the barest protocol sketch, and they have it running in their infrastructure, is a matter of days to weeks, not a matter of months to years.
There's a difference between standing up a service that one person can use, or 10 people can use, and a service that everybody on the Internet can use.
When we talk about bringing new protocols to the web, we're talking about bringing it not to millions, not to tens of millions, we're talking about hundreds of millions to billions of people.
Cloudflare's been an amazing partner in the privacy front.
They've been willing to be extremely transparent about the data that they are collecting, and why they're using it, and they've also been willing to throw those logs away.
Really, users are getting two classes of benefits out of our partnership with Cloudflare.
The first is direct benefits.
That is, we're offering services to the user that make them more secure, and we're offering them via Cloudflare.
So that's like an immediate benefit these users are getting.
The indirect benefit these users are getting is that we're developing the next generation of security and privacy technology, and Cloudflare is helping us do it.
And that will ultimately benefit every user, both Firefox users and every user of the Internet.
We're really excited to work with an organization like Mozilla that is aligned with the user's interests, and in taking the Internet and moving it in a direction that is more private, more secure, and is aligned with what we think the Internet should be.
Everybody should have access to a credit history that they can use to improve their situation.
I'm Tiffany Fong. I'm head of growth marketing here at Kiva. Hi, I'm Anthony Brutas, and I am a senior engineer on the Kiva protocol team.
Great. Tiffany, what is Kiva, and how does it work, and how does it help people who are unbanked?
Micro-lending was developed to give unbanked people across the world access to capital to help better their lives.
They have very limited resources, limited or no access to traditional financial banking services, and this is particularly the case in developing countries.
Kiva.org is a crowdfunding platform that allows people like you and me to lend as little as $25 to these entrepreneurs and small businesses around the world.
So anyone can lend money to people who are unbanked. How many people is that?
So there are 1.7 billion people considered unbanked by the financial system.
Anthony, what is Kiva protocol, and how does it work? Kiva protocol is a mechanism for providing credit history to people who are unbanked or underbanked in the developing world.
What Kiva protocol does is it enables a consistent identifier within a financial system so that the credit bureau can develop and produce complete credit reports for the citizens of that country.
That sounds pretty cutting edge.
You're creating, you're allowing individuals who never before had the ability to access credit to develop a credit history.
Yes. A lot of our security models in the West are reliant on this idea that everybody has their own personal device.
That doesn't work in developing countries. In these environments, even if you're at a bank, you might not have a reliable Internet connection.
The devices in the bank are typically shared by multiple people. They're probably even used for personal use.
And also on top of that, the devices themselves are probably on the cheaper side.
So all of this put together means that we're working with the bare minimum of resources in terms of technology, in terms of a reliable Internet.
What is Kiva's solution to these challenges? We want to intervene at every possible network hop that we can to make sure that the performance and reliability of our application is as in control as it possibly can be.
Now, it's not going to be in total control because we have that last hop on the network.
But with Cloudflare, we're able to really optimize the network hops that are between our services and the local ISPs in the countries that we're serving.
What do you hope to achieve with Kiva? Ultimately, I think our collective goal is to allow anyone in the world to have access to the capital they need to improve their lives and to achieve their dreams.
If people are in poverty and we give them a way to improve their communities, the lives of the people around them, to become more mobile and contribute to making their world a better place, I think that's definitely a good thing.
What is Nito?
My name is Justin Hennessey. I'm the VP of Engineering at Nito. Okay, so I understand Nito is an e-commerce platform based in Australia.
Tell us a little bit more about it.
Nito is a omni -channel sales platform for retailers and wholesalers.
So essentially, what it allows us to do is enable the retailers and wholesalers to sell their products in multitudes of sales channels.
Tell us about the importance of automation in your business.
I came on board as the lead automation engineer, so I think automation is key to anything in this day and age.
If you're not looking at ways to automate the low-value work and then put your people in the high-value areas or high-leverage areas, I think you're just going to get left behind.
So as a technology company, obviously it's critical for us to make sure that automation is at the core of what we do.
When did Nito begin working with Cloudflare?
So in the beginning, when Nito was looking to migrate from an old cloud provider, we also wanted to improve what we call our go-live flow or our onboarding flow for merchants.
And a big part of that was obviously provisioning a website, a custom domain name and a custom SSL certificate.
Requesting and getting granted that certificate in the old process took two domain experts full-time.
It was a very lengthy and technical process which sometimes took up to two, three weeks.
So you can imagine a customer who's itching to get online, that kind of barrier presents a pretty big problem.
So what Cloudflare enabled us to do was to literally automate that onboarding or go -live process to almost a one-click process.
And it also allowed us to diversify the people that could actually do that process.
So now anybody in the business can make that, you know, set a customer live with a very simple process and it's very rapid.
So that's where we started.
What are some of the security challenges you face in your business and how are you managing them?
Any online service has to take security very seriously and at Nito, security is job zero.
So we always bake in thinking and process and tooling around security.
So what Cloudflare does for us is literally gives us a really good protective layer on the very edge of our platform.
So things like DDoS mitigation, web application firewall protection, all of that obviously is then translated into a really solid base of security for all of our merchants as well.
Security is obviously front of mind for Nito as a business and online e -commerce presents a lot of security challenges.
So denial of service attacks, cross-app scripting, we have automated attacks that are trying to find exploits in our forms and our platform generally.
So prior to having Cloudflare, obviously we had measures in place, but what we've gained from Cloudflare is a consolidation of that strategy.
So we are able to look through a single lens and we can look at all of the aspects of our security for the platforms.
And I think it's probably safe to say that now more than ever a good online strategy is crucial to success.
So Hi, we're Cloudflare.
We're building one of the world's largest global cloud networks to help make the Internet faster, more secure, and more reliable.
Meet our customer, BookMyShow.
They've become India's largest ticketing platform thanks to its commitment to the customer experience and technological innovation.
We are primarily a ticketing company.
The numbers are really big. We have more than 60 million customers who are registered with us.
We are on 5 billion screen views every month, 200 million tickets over the year.
We think about what is the best for the customer.
If we do not handle customers' experience well, then they are not going to come back again.
And BookMyShow is all about providing that experience.
As BookMyShow grew, so did the security threats it faced. That's when it turned to Cloudflare.
From a security point of view, we use more or less all the products and features that Cloudflare has.
Cloudflare today plays the first level of defense for us.
One of the most interesting and aha moments was when we actually got a DDoS and we were seeing traffic bursts to up to 50 gigabits per second, 50 GB per second.
Usually, we would go into panic mode and get downtime, but then all we got was an alert and then we just checked it out and then we didn't have to do anything.
We just sat there, looked at the traffic peak, and then being controlled.
It just took less than a minute for Cloudflare to kind of start blocking that traffic.
Without Cloudflare, we wouldn't have been able to easily manage this because even our data center level, that's the kind of pipe, you know, is not easily available.
We started for Cloudflare for security and I think that was the aha moment.
We actually get more sleep now because a lot of the operational overhead is reduced.
With the attack safely mitigated, BookMyShow found more ways to harness Cloudflare for better security, performance, and operational efficiency.
Once we came on board on the platform, we started seeing the advantage of the other functionalities and features.
It was really, really easy to implement HTTP2 when we decided to move towards that.
Cloudflare Workers, which is the, you know, computing at the edge, we can move that business logic that we have written custom for our applications at the Cloudflare edge level.
One of the most interesting things we liked about Cloudflare was everything can be done by the API, which makes almost zero manual work.
That helps my team a lot because they don't really have to worry about what they're running because they can see, they can run the test, and then they know they're not going to break anything.
Our teams have been, you know, able to manage Cloudflare on their own for more or less anything and everything.
Cloudflare also empowers BookMyShow to manage its traffic across a complex, highly performant global infrastructure.
We are running on not only hybrid, we are running on hybrid and multi -cloud strategy.
Cloudflare is the entry point for our customers.
Whether it is a cloud in the backend or it is our own data center in the backend, Cloudflare is always the first point of contact.
We do load balancing as well as we have multiple data centers running.
Data center selection happens on Cloudflare.
It also gives us fine-grained control on how much traffic we can push to each data center depending upon what, you know, is happening in that data center and what is the capacity of the data center.
We believe that, you know, our applications and our data centers should be closest to the customers.
Cloudflare just provides us the right tools to do that. With Cloudflare, BookMyShow has been able to improve its security, performance, reliability, and operational efficiency.
With customers like BookMyShow and over 20 million other domains that trust Cloudflare with their security and performance, we're making the Internet fast, secure, and reliable for everyone.
Cloudflare, helping build a better Internet.
We have seen malicious foreign actors attempt to subvert democracy.
What we saw was a sophisticated attack on our electoral system.
The Athenian project is our little contribution as a company to say how can we help ensure that the political process has integrity, that people can trust it, and that people can rely on it.
It's like a small family or community here, and I think elections around the nation is the same way.
We're not a big agency. We don't have thousands of employees.
We have tens of employees. We have less than a hundred here in North Carolina.
So what's on my mind when I get up and go to work every morning is what's next?
What did we not think of, and what are the bad actors thinking of? The Athenian project, we use that to protect our voter information center site and allow it to be securely accessed by the citizens of Rhode Island.
It's extremely important to protect that and to be able to keep it available.
There are many bad actors out there that are trying to bring that down, and others trying to penetrate our perimeter defenses from the Internet to access our voter registration and or tabulation data.
So it's very important to have an elections website that is safe, secure, and foremost accurate.
The Athenian project for anyone who is trying to run an election anywhere in the United States is provided by us for free.
We think of it as a community service.
I stay optimistic by reminding myself there's a light at the end of the tunnel.
It's not a train. Having this protection gives us some peace of mind that we know if for some reason we were to come under attack, we wouldn't have to scramble or worry about trying to keep our sight up that Cloudflare has our back.
So a botnet is a network of devices that are infected by malicious software programs called bots.
A botnet is controlled by an attacker known as a bot herder. Bots are made up of thousands or millions of infected devices.
These bots send spam, steal data, fraudulently click on ads, and engineer ransomware and DDoS attacks.
There are three primary ways to take down a botnet by disabling its control centers, running antivirus software, or flashing firmware on individual devices.
Users can protect devices from becoming part of a botnet by creating secure passwords, periodically wiping and restoring systems, and establishing good ingress and egress filtering practices.