menuMENU    UK Free TV logo News



Click to see updates

Read this: Elon Frees the Bird

Summary: Podcast

Download MP3 link

Elon Frees the Bird…

BBC sounds music Radio podcasts from BBC Radio 4 today we're asking whether it is that the world's richest man now owns Twitter Elon Musk is the latest American billionaire to take control of an influential social Media platform should be care and will also hear from John Lewis with the BBC Africa eye investigations team about how open source journalism allowed them to uncover the truth behind tragedy on the Moroccan Spanish border.

Then strip is one of the investigative journalist behind the story Ben interest as we talking about Twitter how important is it as a tool for your reporting this Twitter is really a lifeline.

You know it's not only is it away to share finding? I think there's a couple of days and first of all collaboration.

I never would have met some of the people have worked with have not been for Twitter second.

It's a world of sources at our fingertips to the word able to contact.

We really wouldn't be able to actually rates and third.

It's a way for us to actually speak to people on the ground and it's one of those crucial platforms for that which as we have seen with this investigation.

We would have had access to many of those people had it not been for some platforms like Twitter ok and we will come back to more about I'm sure later, but let's go for the big story this week Elon Musk announced in the chief twit last week when it take over the world are messaging out was announced the use of racial slurs on the site immediately spiked apparently due to trolling and celebrities and concerned liberals threaten to leave my boss has now retitled himself Twitter complaint hotline operator joining me today to talk about all this IP2 Kafka a leading tech journalist and host of the podcast week-old Media Danielle Citroen a professor of Law research as an advisor to Twitter on its trust and safety council and Shona Ghosh deputy editor at insiders UK Bureau welcome to you all.

Even following this story, what is the latest on Twitter what's must done with it now? Well, it's 12:30 to on talking to you and your time so things can change the best way to track what you want says he thinks he's going to do with Twitter is to look at his replies on Twitter he's been tweeting all night among other things he insisted that the dollar charge.

He's going to people to Twitter blue.

We can get into Dollars the door centre cakes and Javier on Twitter that he was not going to reinstate Donald Trump and other people have been banned from the platform until after the upcoming us elections.

Did you get on when I need to emphasise is it?

What you want what he's doing it right now is improvisational.

He will say one thing do another he will change his mind most important is the man who plays to buy Twitter for $44 and April I said no, I don't want to do that important by the singer tea now on so it's hard to give you a real answer or what's happening but a lot has happened.

He's throwing what is spaghetti custom Danielle Citroen know the company.

Will use it on Twitter trust and safety council has he been speaking to you to any of your colleagues know it's been as quiet as can be response to have a meeting on November biannual Dragon City Council meeting and no word so I had to say I saw Twitter out like a WhatsApp Council members are wondering are we going to be needing and of course no word and I fear that all the books.

I've been working with we know that the general council has been fired.

She's been the one I'm

The work as well as typical head of safety and I wonder if you spoke to her in the process of being fired because he has quite a lot of people already not least many of the top executive.

Yes, so I hear that you know he's built in response to really bad breath in 2014 and 15 Jack Dorsey built in your whole crew of trust and safety folks led by really sophisticated and careful folks.

We ever really diverse council and they were about in disassembling and it's hard to reassemble so much of what is it was in house and then of course outside advisors inside of you and nothing there.

What's what's happening something.

I've been watching is the number of exacts who of course have been fired, but who say publicly that they have chosen to resign note of the number of women who have said that I'm not actually sure there are any women left and Twitter c-suite.

I think the situation change very quickly over last 24-hours, but vijaya gadde.

Reference for the tops of legal eagle who was responsible for a lot of Twitter's content moderation approach.

She was obviously out in the initial cluster of exits.

I believe the film at the chief people officer the chief customer officer have a 1 oz the departures in the last 24-48 hours and obviously some of these women women of colour as well.

So it doesn't leave a lot of the top in terms of decision-making.

I think I will have implications for safety moderation and many other applications as well.

Alyssa Diaz know what you're referring to is efforts to ensure that black jeans black female names of loss goals were verified on Twitter which I thought about notice lack of those blue tops for women who is the fear of imprecision Esprit significant especially for their student bodies and so I contacted Nick and the at some point is there 15 female black jeans in the last alaskans United States please let's help verify them and they made that happened really quickly, so it's there has been all sorts of wonderful programme when she was head of trust and Safety at Twitter and she made sure her team was full of really the diverse backgrounds cultural and religious backgrounds for so different so that they could understand and see home and could advise all the developers as they were developing products and services and sold my concern is that you?

She's now joined and she's had a city on Spotify that what we're going to see is course the dismantling of all mindful trust and safety from the inside and I worry about what the ok then Peter what's your sense of all this then, did you know how it's going to change the way the platforms used whether it is the most consistent through line from both Elon Musk and the people were advising privately and publicly is the day believe Twitter has been ranked by now former management because they believe that it was trying to prevent a certain group of people expressing opinions on Twitter that was wrong.

He turns up most people who are advising many people who advised Elon Musk on the spectrum, but they believe instead of an old school early internet review of the web thing you know what a thousand voices speaking will sort it out and more speech is better than my speech and I think.

If you if you gave you one Moscow lie detector that is he truly does believe but I don't think you start through any of this.

I want to turn to a story from Africa I that was published this week.

I forgot.

I is a BBC team that has been pioneering award-winning journalism often initially from information found online to other team of Here I hear you had been stuck at the Beginning investigative journalist who worked on the latest story and Suzanne van hi missing is the director and editor now back in June talking video Started circulating on social media showing Moroccan and Spanish border guards in violent clashes with African migrants 24 people died in the incident and dozens more are still missing.

How much was actually reported at the time so that is quite that's basically the cracks of the whole matter of why this investigation led to the film that we that we're talking about.

The fact that normally well, let me let me take it back.

There's a massive groups of people are regularly storming that border fence and it's something is reported on regularly and there's never that many disk and all of a sudden there's 24 desk and there's horrific videos coming on coming online and response was not more violent than ever yet.

We will not really covering it mainstream Media were mainly covering the whole the take the authorities were giving they were saying that it was a violent attack and it wasn't by the migrants.

Yes, they would have any themselves in that way and they were not really focusing well.

They were not talking about the videos that were online and I record videos was showing people detained on the floor handcuffed on their back a sea of bodies.

You couldn't see where one person started on the other run ended and there was his disconnect mainstream, Media

And and basically the BBC as news organisations struggle to report this kind of stuff when it comes online at first because it can't verify yes, that's the that's the problem is that old school Media organisations are all school way of doing Gemma's and means you've got a report on the ground who you can trust to tell you what's happened and with social media giving every a camera in their pocket over 7 days these people filming things everywhere but again there's the same problem that a journalist nobody covers.

Who do you trust? What can you say and cc is a news organisation doesn't always succeed in getting that kind of stuff as quickly as people would like ok, so let me bring Ben striking then to tell us you know.

What did you want cover?

38/32 pretty interesting question what we found was quite counter to what the narratives were online so there were two specific videos that we actually focused on at the Stars One video which was primarily posted in Spanish and Arabic with language text shows a lot of people heading towards a border with the idea of hayletts defend our borders the other video there is lots of bodies on the ground at first video that I wore are was sent by actually suits here who's in that is in the Studio with you and that kind of Stardust thinking ok, what else is online? What are the other videos that we could find to paint a real picture and what were able to do is to piece together all of that footage to identify the events that happened that day and through that were able to identify certain things that were reported for example.

How security forces corner door or back migrants into a specific box.

How they were teargas to trapped in that box but also.

It's around where exactly were bodies lying on the ground were they in grey territory so mix Spanish Moroccan territory other things were able to have further identify.

Just goes to show how much strength there is online and how much extra for each social media profile satellite images that sort of thing that you're looking at exactly so mainly photos and videos uploaded from people living in Morocco living in Spain so in Miller that little enclave and things like that right and that's the most important juice for us is those photos and videos are so cold what we do in Africa is celebrated for its open-source investigations that kind of your bed and you have just been involved with anatomy of a killing for example in 2018 which exam the shooting of women and children that the government in Cameroon had called fake news this latest call death on the border.

I wonder what role traditional journalism methods also playing the same presumably wants you.

You've sent that video to Ben and you start looking into it and you're looking for material online but presume you are also following it out with face-to-face conversations sorting through the authorities.

Yes, well.

This was actually quite a good mix of the two and I think it's usually are able documentaries kind of focus on the open-source kind of verification and and this one we really got the chance to mix the two we have these videos of the whole day basically happening in front of her eyes, but they also have testimony from the people who was here and that's very rare like one of our other films was the Livestream massacre happening right there and then in Sudan but we never got to speak to the victims.

We never got to hear their side of the story rhymes with this one.

We actually managed to track down some of the the people who are on floor being held being beaten and to ask them how how was it? How did this happen? How how how are you treated afterwards because I guess that's where the narrative clashes with the official Version Of Events

Was that people they were saying people falling off the fences and the crushes what killed most of the people and so that's what I thought he was saying but actually are evidence and I'll videos and the testimony can find shows that it's lots of people died in those events but actually the core is there was no care.

There's no medical care afterwards, so these people being held on the floor for hours on H and H being detained hand on the back and belly of them.

Don't survive yes, lots of them didn't survive and that's where we also there's a big suspicion that you stay with 23 people who died who died in the on the day, but actually there's 7 people missing and so the question is what happened to those who are they? Where are they and there's a suspicion that they probably past somewhere further down in the day or the next few days and that's kind of weird all of us gets punched and and becomes really important and there's been a huge reaction.

I think in Spain and Morocco to your investigation.

Yes, yes, I mean especially in Spain at the moment.

Having quite a lot of the Bates in in parliament and even before before we came out with our investigation there already debating whether or not some of this happened in Spanish territory, so that and that's the big question film as well like we're not trying to say yes or no, but we are trying to do as we say ok in this video you can see this we visited that border infrastructure as we were there.

We were told the board was here or Spanish controlled that's no man's land.

That's Morocco and then in the film you can see kind of like ok.

Where are these bodies and these videos as you're not like I said you're not trying to say yes, they are they aren't but we are reflecting the Debate that is ongoing in Spanish Society and and that kind of shows that we open source videos can kind of help to help people see what the beaches are then when it comes to you know how you've told the story and is on the BBC website is on YouTube but you've also done this.

You know very significant Twitter thread.

You're talking at the top of that important was there is two investigations, but it's also very important to get the story out.

Yeah, that's right.

I mean for someone like me involved with the BBC it's quite easy to have that rich but for a lot of people that don't have you know that Rachel that platform something like a Twitter thread or using Twitter is just such a way to gain traction and really posters falling to Pieces and what we are able to do is to post snippets of videos and we've seen those actually being used by other journalists in in adding their own context such as I saw this back in 2017 and I have photos to add from that event to and it just so loud so snippets of a little cookies and crumbs in the way to then be reflected into a pieces of information and the biggest thing you know all of these bricks are on the wall with that context it suits added about that mortar in between every one of those bricks can be.

How to make a new Google which is a new investigation one day and that's what we really hoping that these pretty friends, thank you.

I'm talking at the start of the program will see about Twitter and some of the finer detail of the most plans about the job losses that sort of thing but you know is there a bigger questions showing a debt Insider about another American billionaire taking control of an influential social media platforms should we care I think we should care and you know Twitter is is obviously an American company with American roots and is conflicted about it asks you to free speech but clearly there is a Samsung side the company and with Elon Musk that would promote an American idea of free speech which it doesn't really matter actually what the UK practises what the Europe Europe practises and of course lots of the so that's one factor of American control and American influence this is despite being a global platform.

I think the other facets of being American is being.

The wealth enabling you to expand your power laterally, but that's true in most societies if you're rich that it busy power but I think it's particularly true in the US in the sentence mask and invites are the very wealthy tech billionaires or indeed general billionaires and millionaires are able to expand into the media.

You know outside their coordinates into politics influence Democracy in in possibly slightly alarming ways now.

Must hasn't necessarily said anything that is particularly alarming but necessarily goes beyond his Daystate rolling.

I would say but it's clear he is influenced by American ideas a free speech and I think what's going to be interesting as saying this somewhat self American South African extraction that been in the US for a very long time billionaire.

Try and grapple with more complex ideas of free speech beyond the US

Already had blowback from European regulators, who said you're going to pay by Charles well, you operating Europe and that will mean respecting European laws against hate speech for example who knows what India is going to say and who knows what what are the Asian African Nations might say in response, so that's going to be a response to that trust and safety council must clearly misunderstands the even the American fans up the free speech which you know that's stalking harassment defamation they fall outside of the boundaries of the 1st of May so the reason why Twitter but it changes at Rose in 2015 is because we saw cyber mobs chase you know women offline with a perfect storm of totally speech size 10 part of it.

So it I think that I'm concerned that his understanding of what are these free you know as the concept of

Flower blooms flowers cannot blame when you're under online assault, so my first book was about cyberstalking and it is it is impossible to to speak in the face of your nude photos being posted you a prostitute where you can be located Great Britain death threats, so you know I worry about what they say what he has brought is going to be a whole lot of a Twitter including advertisers and I'll be seeing you said I really like that is really crucial Reasons to be of course on this platform is Professor that we also create computer scientists in the ways in which we reach folks and in our work for me as an internet privacy advocate will make me really sad.

I smile on your face at that point is thinking about what we're talking about Twitter vs.

The internet a lot of the year.

Talking about you and wondering into which countries around the world anyone who operates Internet business operation has the same problem as most us companies can operate in China Netflix stuck down episodes of a TV show at the at the request the Saudi government anyone who's doing business internationally in ends up in my no matter what they say the beginning of their their journey ends up having to sort of Russell and comply with different countries regulations.

It's good to be in organising to everyone not just think he will most probably has not really consider this again.

You need a size that he is Twitter's owner, but he's also it's most prolific and most popular or you can I think a lot of his view of what Twitter is has been skewed by that whenever he tweet something he's deluged with with all kinds of spam bot replies that he believes.

It's bambaataa a huge problem.

If you're a normal person on Twitter you probably aren't seeing that so I think his view of the world and a Twitter doesn't reflect many normal people's you mean.

Let's talk about ownership briefly isn't actually owns Sony baylon.

Must of course the second largest of the shareholders of a company linked to the Saudi royal family, what about the influence of Saudi shareholders, how committed can you be to free speech if you're partially funded by regime that was jailed people for things they posted on this very platform.

I would love to feel about it something that of being considered with great depth by Twitter company that has linked to sound rude, but I suspect it isn't in a representatives of the Saudi shareholders have been tweeting at Elon Musk also complaining about various niches issues, but actually Saudi money is everywhere intack thanks to a major investor call softbank who hopefully most normal people won't have.

But sadly the rest of us talks have to follow quite closely softbank.

Is is a Japanese telecoms company that has a mass enormous amounts of money from external investors including Saudi are and has mostly powder into private tech companies and now some public companies so actually influences how the money is is much more is much bigger intact so I said I don't know really how carefully so so will be thinking about that given that actually that's a broader problem across.

You are stuck and Daniel to get investment from the Saudis predates Elon Musk these predictions on that she new to Twitter even rise and fall over a decade how seriously do you think the company took the question of free speech and can protecting their use as previously based on what you've already said.

I'd say you think quite strongly.

But seriously and of course Twitter sign a memo of understanding with a European commissioner 2018 which committed Twitter to respecting and taking down within 24-hours he understood you know a defined as the in the way that the European Commission with define it which is quite broadly speech that means and denigrates people based on group membership specific sensitive groups and so do you think they sort of understood that they were global business that the EU is coming for that Germany would be coming for them that they have to adhere to gdpr UK gdpr is they are a global company and that the consequences or can be horrific going to come to human rights abuses with me.

See this platform used in ways that enable cyber mobs and genocide you know I think I get it they used to get it though.

I we can't be sure of course what this looks like going for it so I think.

And we're going to see either and then put a business cos the European and other governments are going to come sit on them hard for regular.

You know first speech violations that are relevant in their own country is where we see a organise that is a truly you ask Twitter which sadly not many people want to join if you don't have contact moderation pizza your thoughts on there, so I didn't you know must have changed with the idea of regulation at all.

Is he thinking globally he will say he's thinking globally and I'll say this to create applies across the world and then someone from the USA actually going to talk to you about that.

We should talk about that.

It was having struggles with India long before Elon Musk decided.

He wanted to own the company whether or not he start about it doesn't matter is going to confront it regardless.

I'm ok since it grew too many millions of years ago.

You know that there was a time and Twitter's very early days when it was very charming you had to SMS to be able to tweet and it was she like sending a group DM to some very friendly internet strangers.

We are long past that internet that that internet is dead and gone which is why some of the conversations that Peter and Times of returning to this pure internet work wear it will all moderate at self like a messaging board.

It is pretty out of touch in the current atmosphere of polarisation on the fact that most of the wall is now on the internet.

So no, I don't think a town square is the right analogy or is possible that there might be miniature town squares or Communities and side to sleep at the broadly described as Anarchy like if possible your predictions on what will happen next pizza and it would be expecting more of the same Twitter something dramatically different is difficult to predict with.

Ask I would say I am 100% sure they will be chaos in what form any idea when what's your what's your prediction?


disappointing disappointing is anybody what about you? Just looking at must run some of his other companies and I'm not necessarily sure there's an amazing track record better, but clearly at Tesla which is you know has issues, but this is very is for the most part Valley operationally tight has achieved some amazing things if he has any sense.

He will bring in a group of very tight operators to take some of these issues of his hands what he's done.

That's wild is obviously fire all these operators straight off the bat.

So he'll very quickly have to bring a new very smart very sharp team to put out some of these fires he seems doing that will he do it in time before Twitter effectively collapses.

I don't know I'm could you do it to make it more profitable to make it becoming more profitable and less than echo chamber.

Is that any chance of that survived that?

I don't think that is a short or medium-term like you had no OK well.

I'm afraid that is all we have time for today.

Thank you so much to all my guests Peter Kafka leading tech journalist and the book osprey kode Media Danielle Citroen pressure of Law and Order of the fight for privacy protecting dignity identity and love in the digital age should a goes from inside as UK Bureau Benjamin was an season 10 missing from Africa we will be back next week in the meantime.

You can head to the BBC Sounds app and search for Elon Musk to find all Radio 4 series about him but for now.

Thank you so much for listening.

Transcriptions done by Google Cloud Platform.

Lots more recommendations to read at Trends -
Summaries are done by Clipped-Your articles and documents summarized.


Your comment please
Please post a question, answer or commentUK Free TV is here to help people. If you are rude or disrespectful all of your posts will be deleted and you will be banned.

Privacy policy: UK Free Privacy policy.