This work aims to analyse the coverage of the 2008 torch lighting ceremony throughout the newspapers El Pais, La Vanguardia and El Mundo, the video delivered by the public regional channel Televisio de Catalunya and the private television CNN Plus. This research also includes a study of the Yahoo webpage devoted to the Beijing Olympic Games and the videos that YouTube indexed in Spanish language referring to the lighting ceremony. In the Spanish media, the protests were given greater significance than the symbolism and ceremony surrounding this unique sporting event. Spanish newspapers emphasized the protests during the torch ceremony, giving a geopolitical slant to the occasion rather than treating it as a sporting event. YouTube constructed for the searches in Spanish an image of lighting ceremony in which the incident played an important role together with domestic videos of the Olympic flame carried through the streets of Buenos Aires days after the lighting ceremony. © 2010 Taylor & Francis.