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CNN 10

Recent News Standoff Between Facebook and Australian Government; Exploring A Pair of Pictorial Mysteries from Two Countries

Aired February 24, 2021 - 04:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hi, I`m Carl Azuz for CNN 10. It looks like a standoff between the Facebook technology company and the nation of

Australia is coming to an end. What happened between them is our first story this Wednesday. Last week, Facebook suddenly prevented Australians

from finding or sharing news on the social media platform.

This included links and articles for local and international news and it appeared to be the most restrictive step Facebook has ever taken against

publishers of information. At first, Facebook`s dramatic block included some fire and emergency services, health agencies, politicians and

charities that help victims of violence. The company said these pages were unintentionally affected by its news block and that it would restore them.

But why did Facebook stop news sharing in the first place? It all has to do with a disagreement between technology companies and news companies. These

two sides both benefit from news that`s posted online. Tech companies like Facebook and Google get reliable news content to help fill in their search

results and feeds.

News companies benefit when people visit their sites after clicking on stories posted through Facebook and Google. But for years, news producers

have said that tech companies take unfair advantage of them using news content but not giving the owners of that content much in return. The

Australian government got involved in this.

It`s considering a new law that will require tech companies to pay news companies for their articles and video instead of distributing that content

for free. That`s why Facebook decided to shutdown news in Australia. It fiercely opposes this legislation.

Australian officials say Facebook`s move was heavy handed, unnecessary and that it came without warning and the nation`s prime minister said that big

tech companies think they`re bigger than governments and that the rules shouldn`t apply to them. Facebook said it does not steal news but that

publishers choose to share their stories on the social media platform. It was concerned that if Australia passed a law that required it to pay for

news content, other countries would too.

Facebook was also worried that it would be forced to pay for news content that people randomly shared on its platform. Content that Facebook itself

had nothing to do with. So what changed in the standoff? The company said this week that the Australian government would allow Facebook to keep

control over what news information appears on its site. Facebook will also get more time to work out deals with news publishers so it won`t be

immediately required to start paying them for content. The tech company now says it will restore news sharing in Australia.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Perseverance is continuing to descend on the parachute.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. Which of these artists was born in Norway? Johannes Vermeer, Edvard Munch, Vincent Van Gogh or Henri Matisse. Born in

Norway in 1863 was the expressionist painter Edvard Munch.

His best known painting is one of the most famous artworks in the world and "The Scream" has a bit of a mystery to it. A tiny message was hidden in the

painting. The words read quote, "can only been painted by a madman". Who wrote them?

As far as the painting goes, art historians believe it was inspired by a walk Munch took around the Norwegian capital of Oslo. He was said to be

mentally and physically uneasy at the time. "The Scream" was first unveiled to the public in 1895 and some critics didn`t like it. They thought the

work was troubling and questioned the mental condition of the person who painted it.

Curators at the National Museum of Norway say Munch was hurt by this criticism and that he wrote about it in his diary. But the author of the

hidden message has been less certain. It`s faint, unclear and written in pencil on top of the paint.

So experts say it was done after the artwork was finished. Some have speculated that a critic vandalized it but after using infrared technology

to examine the madman message and then comparing it to Munch`s notes and letters. Curators concluded that it was written by Munch himself. They

believe he put it there after hearing people criticize "The Scream".

A photographic mystery is our next story today. We may never know how colored photographs taken in the U.S. state of Alaska in the mid-20th

century made their way onto slides in the Netherlands 50 years later. But two boxes of these color slides were purchased there by a German woman in

2008 and she thought that if she could only get these photographs published somewhere, some of the people in them who are still alive might recognize

themselves or their family members. Whoever took these photographs is still unknown but one by one, the subjects have been coming forward filling in

captions lost to history.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was on Facebook one morning and I saw this lost treasures post, kept scrolling and then I ran across our photo and I was

sort of disbelief.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In 2008, Jennifer Scooping (ph) bought two boxes of slides from a flea market in Amsterdam. The seller didn`t know anything

about their origin.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Inaudible) well, look beautiful portraits of people and they are dated back to the 50s` and 60s`. I did scan them and look at

the picture. Could decrypt a few cities like Anchorage for example.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She reached out to some cultural institutes in Alaska hoping they could help with her search but had no luck. Scooping (ph)

eventually put the slides away and didn`t rediscover them until 2020 when she was cleaning out a cupboard. In a renewed effort, she reached out to

Francesca Street, a journalist at CNN, hoping that some media coverage and the power of the internet might reunite the photos with the people in them.

FRANCESCA STREET, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Thank you for reaching out as well on Twitter.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. (inaudible).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scooping (ph) put all the photos in a Google drive and Street posted an article online. Messages from excited readers soon started

flooding in.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I recognized my sister-in-law and then I noticed the other photo, and I practically jumped off of the couch.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many people have died in that collection of photos and it`s really heartwarming and welcoming for those of us who are left.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Even though our mom`s not with us anymore, it`s like she visited us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But the identity of the photographer remains a mystery.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was only outsiders who, back then, had photos. It was rare to find anybody who had a camera with -- that would capture

anything in color.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Some clues pointed to a KLM flight attendant. Others to a local resident.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For my people, when someone dies and the baby is born. I -- I have her soul and so for this generation to see those older photos

of older people. Say, I`m named after this person. I`ve never had a -- I`ve never seen a photo of this person. It`s finding connecting soul.


AZUZ: Bringing it home this Wednesday, a house that`s a lot easier to move than the one we showed you yesterday. This is a tiny house, a really tiny

house. A Kansas couple`s mid-century modern dream home that`s 1/12 the size of the real thing. The detail is exact and it even has a doghouse. It was

built as a diversion during the corona virus pandemic and the couple`s asking their virtual Instagram visitors to make a donation to an

Alzheimer`s foundation.

It actually took them longer to construct than a real house. Like they say "home" wasn`t built in a day and it`s too bad it`s not made of gingerbread

because that would have been "home sweet home". They`re grateful to have a roof onto their heads, a home within a home, literally two houses in one

because a lot of good things can happen inside those eight walls.

I`m Carl Azuz reporting from our "home like" studio. Want to give a shout out to our viewers in Athens, Greece at the American Community Schools in

Athens, Greece for subscribing and leaving a comment on our You Tube channel. We`ll see you tomorrow for more CNN.