Hundreds protested in the Venezuelan
capital, Caracas

In the week when Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan president, shut down the country's oldest and one of its most popular TV stations, RCTV, The Listening Post looks at what lies behind his actions.

RCTV stands accused of fomenting the 2002 coup which saw Chavez arrested and held illegally for 48 hours.

Five years on, and Chavez has closed the station and replaced in with TVes - a government sponsored  channel.

Is the closure an abuse of human rights, or did RCTV go beyond the normal bounds of acceptability for the media? Tell us what you think by sending us a Global Village Voice.

In Newsbytes this week: 

The French president and the media - how Nicolas Sarkozy is appointing close allies to important posts in French television.

Also, we look at how much - or should that be how little - airtime is being devoted by the American media to reporting on Iraq.

Meanwhile, look out for free clips of Star Wars being released by George Lucas to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first film. The legendary director wants fans to enjoy using the 250 clips to make their own "mash ups". Nice one, George.

Meenakshi Ravi also has a report on how the online giants Myspace and YouTube are fighting for first place in the US presidential race by coming up with new and innovative ways to involve people in politics. Will internet interest in candidates really translate into votes later? Watch this space.

And finally, we have a special treat for weather watchers in our Video of the Week as we showcase some of the best - and worst - of the world's meteorologists. 

Watch this episode of The Listening Post here:

Part 1:

Part 2:




This episode of The Listening Post aired from 01 June 2007

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Source: Al Jazeera