18/03/2018 The Papers


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18/03/2018

A lively, informed and in-depth conversation about the Sunday papers.


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June Arsenal and Charlton, and

Sunderland versus Manchester city. I

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am sure there would be more to add

to that later on in the day, but for

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now it is time for the papers.

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With me are the journalist

and broadcaster Rachel Shabi

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and the Associate Editor

of the Times, Anne Ashworth.

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Let's have a look then at this

mornings front pages.

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The Observer has an interview

with a whistle-blower who alleges

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that information from millions

of Facebook users may have been used

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by a data company, during the 2016

US presidential election.

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Both companies deny any wrongdoing.

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The Mail On Sunday says Theresa May

is planning a crackdown

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on what the paper calls

Putin's McMafia - associates

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of the Russian President

with money in the UK.

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The Sunday Times warns that

a Russian cyber-attack could turn

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the lights out in Britain.

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It reports that the

National Grid is on alert.

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The Sunday Express has more

on Theresa May putting

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pressure on Moscow -

with a possible travel ban

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for 1,000 Russian tycoons.

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The Sunday Telegraph

leads on the same story -

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as well as a photograph of a smiling

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

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at a St Patrick's Day parade

of the Irish Guards.

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And the Sunday Mirror leads

on the sex abuse scandal in Telford,

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quoting a police insider who says

it was 'too much trouble' to crack

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down on grooming gangs.

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The mail on Sunday lead on McMafia

millions. Is this the new stage

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targeting the money?

It seems to be.

It does seem to be a sensible thing

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to do when you think about that

their lots of Russian oligarchs in

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the UK using the UK as a means of

laundering some money acquired. If

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there are assets in their right to

be in the UK is copper mines, then

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they will be irritated with Putin

for precipitating the situation.

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Theresa May making it easier to

seize these... Ways to curb that.

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These are all, I think, the right

approach, but it is interesting,

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because this is exactly what Jeremy

Corbyn was suggesting that we do,

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and when he did that, he was laughed

at, whereas now that she was

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digesting it, she is being rightly

lauded. The Conservatives actually

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sat down the Labour amendment, to

discuss... But also take it further

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by leaking it to human rights

violators making it easier to go

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after human rights violators. That

meeting was very quickly shut down

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by the Conservative Government, it

was supposed to be a three-hour

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hearing, and it was closed after

half an hour. Before any of this

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happened, you had the Labour

amendment trying to bring these

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measures through, and it was

completely shut down.

And what are

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your thoughts on this? You think

that Theresa May needs to go

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further?

I think the adjective

church alien -- Churchillian was

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used yesterday. However, it is a

very, very tricky path that they are

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trying to go down. Because, visas

you can make more difficult... The

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situation is that we have already

got a great deal of Russian money

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already invested in this country,

and it is very difficult to see how

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we could make life so uncomfortable

for these oligarchs and that they

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would turn on Putin, because many of

them are not necessarily friends of

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Putin. Some of them are said to be

Putin's cronies. They are not all

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Putin's cronies. What are these

emergency laws? Will we have sudden

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tax rises? More tax on their

properties? It is not quite clear.

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It is all in the round of rhetoric

at the moment, and there is not too

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much that is concrete to hang up on.

You mention Jeremy Corbyn.

I think

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that Theresa May has handled this

correctly. I wouldn't necessarily

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say the same thing of some of her

ministers. I find some of their

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rhetoric unhelpful, bordering on

childish and very and idiomatic,

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when you look at the sort of thing

that Gavin Williamson and Boris

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Johnson have been saying. But, this

whole week has been really appalling

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in the way that the Leader of the

Opposition has been treated, I

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understand that people don't like

him, and that is one thing, but some

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people, I wish they could get past

that. And get a bit of accurate

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reporting.

Plenty of his own

backbenchers were not happy with his

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performance.

And do some accurate

reporting of

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performance.

And do some accurate

reporting of what he actually said.

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That was exactly the same as what

Theresa May said. All the evidence

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base it highly likely that the

Russian state was either directly or

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indirectly responsible for the

Salisbury

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indirectly responsible for the

Salisbury attack. All that she is

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asking for is international law. At

the moment, it isn't exactly at this

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moment that we need to call ahead

and say, hang on, let's slow down,

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let's follow due process. That is

all he did.

Beds have a quick look

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at the Sunday Telegraph would also

spattered on this. A similar story,

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really. Britain to punish Putin's

cronies, but they also took the

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about the possibility, leader of the

Scottish Conservatives saying that

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Britain should pull the plug on

Russia today.

It has got a tiny

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number of viewers. What a terrible

crew that would be for Putin.

So you

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think that would backfire?

I think

we need to be very measured, here.

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Yes it would backfire. It is very

interesting that most of Corbyn's

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backbenchers take a different view

of him. I think people would have

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been horrified... Russian gangsters

and being transported to the British

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Isles.

Rachel, the Sunday Times, I

suppose the threat that Russia might

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intensify might

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suppose the threat that Russia might

intensify might put it up another

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notch.

This one is scary, isn't it?

Of course it is scary, I am not and

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nine at one second, I am just saying

that it is exactly at this moment a

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time of international crisis that

our values

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time of international crisis that

our values and our commitment to

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international law is tested, and if

these are things that we believe in,

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then this is the moment to show that

we believe in them.

But this is a

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suggestion that the Russians could

cut our power supplies.

That is

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terrifying. Absolutely terrifying.

But we know... Rusher is a malign

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actor around the world with these

horrifying attacks. We look at their

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support in Syria, we look at

potential invitations with

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manipulating social media in order

to do distort potentially election

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is both in the UK and in the US. We

know that it has capacity to engage

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in this kind of cyber warfare, and

the National Grid, according to the

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Sunday Times was put on alert this

week by our national cyber Security

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Centre saying that you need to step

up the security in case there is

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such an attack. And of course it is

terrifying.

It turns the Cold War

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into a cyber war. How this war will

play out, we have got nothing to

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judge this by. We have seen huge

amount of writing about the Cold

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War, and the lessons that we learn

from that. But the lessons that we

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learned from that will not

necessarily be useful in the ways in

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which Russia can attack us, through

our electricity supplies. It is a

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very, very interesting one. I am

sure that people have Origi started

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to write books about this one.

What

about the rhetoric of some of the

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politicians, you mentioned Boris

Johnson. He has got a piece saying

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resisting a bully is risky, but it

is right. Ie Critical of the things

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that he has been saying and what he

says he?

Yes, I am very critical. It

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compares very starkly with what

Theresa May is saying, and I wonder

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what she has to say about this. This

uses hyperbole and rhetoric.

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Ratcheting up and inflaming a

situation. Look, we are dealing with

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an authoritarian ruler of a country

with nuclear weapons. The last thing

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we want is this kind of language

from our Foreign Secretary.

But he

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is just calling it as it is. He is

saying it is reckless. It is.

But

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assuming that he he doesn't know any

more than Theresa May knows at this

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stage, all she is saying is that the

Russian state was highly likely to

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be responsible for the nerve agent.

We don't know whether it is directly

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or indirectly, yet. It is incredibly

reckless and dangerous and not

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diplomatic to be ratcheting things

up.

Just while we talk about Boris

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Johnson, we have just heard that he

has said in the last few minutes,

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that experts will come to Britain on

Monday tomorrow, in fact, to test

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samples of the nerve agent, so that

it quite interesting.

That is

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exactly what Corbyn was calling for,

and was laughed at, so here we are.

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Whatever you think of him, it is a

very beautifully well argued these,

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and you know, you have got to bow.

He does it well.

His way with words.

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You have got to... That will

resonate with a lot of Sun readers

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this morning.

The Observer, they

have got a thing about Facebook,

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that files were taken in a record

dated -- dated breach.

Never do an

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online quiz. It is a way for them to

harvest your information so that it

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is proved. These people that did a

psychological quiz, quite

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innocently, hoping to find out more

about themselves, their details were

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stolen, those of all their Facebook

friends were stolen, and then used

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in programmes to... For the American

election by this company, Cambridge

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analytics, in which they were

supposed to have reveals people's in

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the demons in a way that... What we

use and what we say, and what we

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write online, reveals more about

ourselves, and it was used in the

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American election. I think this is

an extraordinary story which makes

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you think, how much of this

information have we already given

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away? And some of this information

is said to be still the sale on the

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Web.

Rachel, are you careful what

you put on this the? Are you on

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Facebook?

I try to be. This is an

incredible is the port. It is in the

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Observer as well as the New York

Times. They both have is

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whistle-blower, that is what makes

it so strong. He was one of the

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founders of Cambridge analytics, and

at that time they were approached by

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a tram supporter, Robert Mercer and

Stephen Bannon, who was trumped's --

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Trump's key adviser at the time.

They had to devise this means

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targeting people for political

campaigning online, using

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psychological profiles, and they

didn't at that time have that model,

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and that is when they decided to

exploit Facebook quote, to harvest

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50 million profiles. They will use

without those people knowing that

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that was going to happen. I do

think... Facebook of course there's

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that this was not really a breach,

because the researchers to open the

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floodgates in this way did so "In a

legitimate way and in the proper

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channels"...

Would anybody's

information whose was used in this

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way regarded as through the proper

channels. We have gotten very tough

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data protection rules in this

country which are being toughened up

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again. It seems that silicon valley

people seem to operate outside that

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key regulation. I have got lots of

younger friends who are coming off

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Facebook because they want to retain

some privacy. I just wonder whether

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this would be the moment... The

access changes, and we start to

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become distrustful of social media,

rather than happy to commit to it,

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all our innermost secrets,

financial, personal and otherwise.

I

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think that is right.

There is a lot

of good faith, here. Facebook has

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suspended its links with the cable

company. Although it is said that

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they knew about it two years ago.

OK, all right. Great front-page

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story, but am afraid we have run out

of time. Good to have you both with

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us. That is it for the Sunday papers

this morning.

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Don't forget you can see the front

pages of the papers online

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on the BBC News website.

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It's all there for you -

seven days a week at bbc dot co uk

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Thank you Rachel Shabi

and Anne Ashworth.

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Goodbye.

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