Pubdate: Wed, 08 Nov 2000
Source: USA Today (US)
Copyright: 2000 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc.
Contact:  1000 Wilson Blvd., Arlington VA 22229
Fax: (703) 247-3108
Author: Janet Kornblum


This is one Web site that is happy to go up in smoke.

Welcome to Pot-TV, featuring news and video shows dedicated to -- 
yes, marijuana.

Based in the basement of founder and longtime pot advocate Marc Emery 
of Vancouver, British Columbia, shows include Marijuana News; the 
Healing Herb Hour (medical marijuana issues); Shake 'n' Bake 
(pot-laden recipes); and the Grow Show.

The site, funded by Emery's illegal sale of pot seeds to the tune of 
$220,000, has been up and running for several months and is growing 
in popularity, he says. The message is simple: The site advocates 
legalization at every turn, something Emery also has promoted in his 
magazine, Cannabis Culture. But the Net magnifies the message, says 
Chris Bennett, host of Burning Shiva Hour, which relates the history 
of cannabis.

''If the pen is mightier than the sword, then the PC is mightier than 
the atomic bomb,'' Bennett says. ''People talk about pirate radio, 
but this is so much further reaching and so much more accessible.''

Plus, the Net can run shows that no TV network would touch. Thousands 
visit every day.

The main drawback, says Emery, who's been convicted on pot-related 
charges ''many times'' (but never for issues relating to this site), 
is that it's hard to attract advertisers. ''We haven't drawn any 
revenue yet. We're an illegal subject.''

Emery is confident that pot will become legal. But for now, cops 
aren't quite sure how to treat Pot-TV -- the Web didn't exist when 
pot laws were passed.

Meanwhile, those behind the site are not only developing more shows, 
they're smoking copious amounts of marijuana. ''While I've been 
talking to you, I've been smoking weed here,'' Bennett says. ''It's 
part of our culture. We don't feel it's a debilitating thing.''
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