Community Media: The Thriving Voice of the Venezuelan People
In Venezuela today a grass-roots movement of community and alternative
media is challenging the domination of private commercial media. Community
oriented, non profit, non commercial, citizen and volunteer run media
outlets are a crucial part of the democratic transformation of society
that is occurring throughout Venezuela. Part of this transformation is the
understanding of freedom of speech as a positive and basic right. This
right includes universal access to a meaningful space for communication in
addition to freedom from censorship. Freedom of expression as a positive
right provides universal access to the means of communication. Political
Analyst Diana Raby reiterates; "the technology of modern communications
has to be made accessible to all, not merely as consumers but as
participants and creators." Community media is beginning to fill this
role in Venezuela. ...
Venezuela orders closure of 34 radio stations
Caracas - Venezuela's leftist government ordered 34 radio stations off
the air, accusing them of broadcasting without a proper licence.
The stations in question have to cease transmissions, Public Works
Minister Diosdado Cabello, who also heads the country's telecommunications
regulatory agency, said Friday.
The closure orders are an indication of a growing rift between the
government of President Hugo Chavez and Venezuela's private media.
In total, 240 radio stations are under investigation. Broadcast rights
were withdrawn because the operators had either died, failed to update
their licences or registrations had expired, Cabello said.
The licences could be handed over to so-called community radio stations,
which are often operating on a non-profit basis.
The decision to pull the plug on the 34 stations came one day after Luisa
Ortega Diaz, Venezuela's top prosecutor, suggested toughening the
country's media law to "regulate the freedom of expression."
Under the new law, journalists could be imprisoned for up to four years
for publishing "harmful" information endangering the "peace, security and
independence" of the nation. ...
This e-mail service is edited, managed and moderated by
George Lessard http://mediamentor.ca
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