tv BBC News at Ten BBC News January 31, 2019 10:00pm-10:31pm GMT
tonight at ten, the growing pressure on social media companies to do more to protect young people from harmful images online. it follows the case of 14—year—old molly russell, who took her own life after viewing posts on suicide and self—harm. we now report on other families who've voiced their own concerns about self—harm, including 16—year—old libby. i don't think it made me do it. but i think it definitely accelerated the severity of it. we'll have libby's story, and we'll be reporting on the possibility of new laws to enforce a duty of care by the social media companies. also tonight... the south—west of england already affected by the freezing weather, as heavy snow is expected in parts of wales and southern england overnight. official figures show an overall drop in the number of rough sleepers across england but leading charities say the true problem is under—reported. the nhs blood contamination scandal of the ‘70s and ‘80s. victims and their families have still not received extra financial support.
it's not easy to admit that, at my age, you've got nothing, because you've had it all taken away from you. and a glimpse of one of the world's greatest collection of leonardo da vinci drawings, on loan from the queen. and coming up in sportsday on bbc news, west indies bowlers give england another torrid examination, this time on day one of the second test in antigua. good evening. social media companies are facing the prospect of new laws giving them a legal duty of care to children and young people who use their sites. the culture secretary,
jeremy wright, says he's considering the move "very carefully" following the case of molly russell, the 14—year—old who took her own life in 2017. her father says she was badly affected by graphic images of self—harm and suicide which she viewed on instagram, the social media platform owned by facebook. calls to a leading suicide prevention charity have increased by 40% since we highlighted molly's case last week. this report by our correspondent angus crawford contains some distressing images. she had so much to offer. molly russell's story... and that's gone. ..has sparked a debate... these are companies that count their profits in the billions, and they turn round and say to us that they can't protect our children? ..that may change social media for good. do you have the power to compel them to do what needs to be done? yes, absolutely. and it's also struck a chord with families across the country. like ian and his daughter libby, so horrified by what happened to molly that they've decided
to speak out. libby once had 8,000 followers on instagram. 16 and now firmly in recovery, libby used to self—harm, an obsession learned on and fed by the platform. i don't think it made me do it, but i think it definitely accelerated the severity of it, because i'd see people and then you'd almost go, "that's ok, then, it doesn't matter how bad it gets because they're not dead, it hasn't killed them, doing that." so it kind of made it feel more safe to do it worse. her dad tried to get the worst content taken down, but says it was a waste of time. you go, "right, i'll try and get rid of this account, there must be a way to stop it," and there's nothing. and they're not interested. and until one of their close family members falls down that rabbit hole, they won't do anything about it. until it affects them or their wallet, they are not interested.
meet chloe, who's 12, and her mum emma. shocked by molly's story, they rang the bbc. chloe had stumbled across just this kind of content. platforms on social media could, like, kind of stop or report or take down bad things on the internet that are scaring people, because i know it's just notjust me who's getting scared by it. i know there must be other people. users should be at least 13 to be allowed on instagram, but emma says age restrictions aren't the point. the reality is that people are using them at that age, so whether there's the age limit... and when she's 13, what difference is it going to be? molly was 14. does that mean it's acceptable for her to see those images? i don't think there's any age that's acceptable. a hard—hitting video with a simple message,
encouraging young people to talk about suicide. molly's death has certainly done that. there's been a 40% rise in calls to this charity's helpline. this is james murray. his son ben took his own life last year, aged 19. a technology consultant, james knows social media can change. so, do you think the penny is dropping? the penny‘s dropping. i think molly's case could be a turning point. what they should be doing when somebody is looking at self—harm or suicide is promoting the positive content over and above the negative content. so, the algorithm could be used for good? yeah, absolutely, and i think it's high time the social media companies delivered on the promise of social value and became a force for good in the community. instagram says... molly's story has touched
a raw nerve and sparked a demand for change. the social media companies now have to decide if they will embrace reform or have it forced upon them. angus crawford, bbc news. as we heard, social media companies could face new laws giving them a legal duty of care to children and young people who use their sites. the culture secretary, jeremy wright, said he was giving this very careful consideration. 0ur media editor, amol rajan, is here. there's been talk of regulating the internet for years. why hasn't it happened? it strikes most people as common sense that the internet and social media should be subject to democratic scrutiny. but there are a number of philosophical and practical reasons why it has proved hard to do. on a philosophical level, it's been the founding principle of the web that it is open, that all human life should be there, that censorship has no place.
defenders of this ideal say that if you take regulation too far, you convert the internet from the open, western vision, to the more walled garden that people get in places like china. then there are the practicalities. if you set up a regulator, what does it regulate? if it's social media companies, what counts as social media? snapchat, for instance, is often described as a social media platform, but they say they're a camera and communication company. subtle but significant difference. next, where do you regulate? parliaments are national, but social media platforms are international. to be effective regulation will need buy—in from many different countries, such as with europe's new data laws, known as gdpr. and finally, how do you keep up? there's so much material on these platforms ? 400 hours of footage uploaded onto youtube every minute, for instance — that they're very difficult to control. innovation is fast and unpredictable, whereas regulation is slow and consensual. none of which is to make a case for or against regulation of course. but it does begin to explain why, for all the clamour from the public, and all the showboating from politicians, regulation of tech companies is still in its infancy.
everyone agrees more regualtion is inevitable. theyjust don't know what it looks like yet. huw. thank you. if you're distressed about any of the issues raised in this report and would like details of organisations which offer advice and support, go online to bbc.co.uk/actionline. or you can call free at any time to hear recorded information on 0800 066 066. around 100 drivers in cornwall have had to abandon their cars in whiteout conditions as heavy snow has fallen across the region. there was an amber weather warning in place across the south—west and south wales, with wider yellow warnings for snow and ice in place for much of the country. 0ur correspondentjon kay reports from devon. when it came down, it really came down. a treacherous rush hour in devon tonight.
main roads blocked. back lanes impassible. vehicles abandoned across dartmoor. i can't move my car, i came off the a30 and was just slipping and ijust couldn't move my car from about here. so i thought it was safer to not try and drive it. in cornwall, a hundred drivers have been stuck on bodmin moor. police say they have been making intensive efforts to reach them. with traffic, that stands as far as the eye can see uphill and as far as the eye can see in the distance. if these vehicles don't get moved, this could be a major incident, depending on how long we are stuck here, really. parts of mid wales have had a pasting and, with more heavy snow due tonight, some rural communities are at risk of being cut off. 0n snowdonia, a warning for climbers and walkers. the wind chill factor at the top, you're talking about —20 degrees. so we are trying to emphasise
the importance of preparing well before going out. in devon and cornwall, those who can are turning out to help. they are expecting to work right through the night. this is nothing like as bad as the beast from the east last year. this is just the wet stuff from the west. but, after a relatively mild few months, the snow seems to have taken many of us by surprise. i'm waiting for my husband, in his 4x4. so, hopefully he'll be able to get through. he's got snow tyres also because we ski so we are fairly used to it. and he's got snow chains, i don't know if he'll throw them in the boot as well. he will be able to ski here tomorrow! i know, yes! looking forward to it! see you on the slopes! it's horrible, isn't it? no! it's lovely weather! says he, rubbing his hands, freezing! freezing cold. i'm getting in before we get snowed in. have a nice time. good luck. bye bye, mate. sliding! he made it, i'm glad to tell you. we
have had more snow hit that than we we re have had more snow hit that than we were predicted, about 12 centimetres in parts of cornwall. it is slowly making its way across southern england and into parts of south wales and that will cause big problems for a lot of us tomorrow morning. british airways have said they could be delays on short—haul flights out of the south—east of england, south west trains are predicting some problems as well. for the rush out tomorrow, bbc news teams in all of those areas will have the latest for you and of course full coverage on bbc brea kfast. thank you. by contrast, the weather conditions in the us are far more challenging. temperatures have dropped to —30 celsius as the arctic air sweeps across much of america's mid west. temperatures could fall even further tonight. it's so cold that millions are being told to avoid taking deep breaths and to minimise talking if they're outside. live to chicago and our north america correspondent chris buckler.
you can feel it whenever you breeze, temperatures have slowly been rising, you can tell that from the chicago river behind me —— when you breathe. there was a solid sheet of ice covering it but it feels like -27 ice covering it but it feels like —27 celsius according to the weather service. to demonstrate, we have been using what was a wet t—shirt, we brought this out of the hotel a short time ago. within about 60 seconds, it froze solid. that gives you an idea of the conditions people have been facing. chicago stands surrounded by ice and snow. people here are used to cold weather but these are temperatures seen only once in a generation. to try to keep the city's trains running, the tracks have had to be
set on fire and boats have been attempting to break through the solid sheets of ice that cover the chicago river. the windy city has become the wind chill city. my fingertips have been frozen twice and had to take a pit stop twice. toes frozen twice. so i made two stops. it's brutally cold, bitterly cold. you can actually see frost on your eyelashes. what does it feel like? it's a little cold. they froze and closed a couple of times. across america's midwest, temperatures have dropped far below freezing. a huge part of the us caught in what's known as the polar vortex. it's pushed arctic air down from the north pole and left many places colder than the antarctic. from the air, lake michigan now looks more like land than water. people have been doing their own small science experiments to see for themselves just how cold it is, including this. i've got boiling water in this flask
and you'll see, as soon as i throw it into the cold air, it just simply freezes. further north, even parts of the mighty niagara falls have been frozen. this is a deadly cold and people have been killed in accidents on the icy roads and in some cases from just being exposed to these extreme elements. for another evening, centres have been opened to keep the homeless warm and safe. there is no shelter on the streets from these kind of conditions and the frozen beauty of this weather can't be allowed to distract from its dangers. chris buckler, bbc news, chicago. the extent of rough sleeping in england is being under—estimated and is not properly reflected in official figures according to some leading charities. the latest offical figures suggest that more than 11,500 people slept on the streets of england last year, a slight fall on last year, but that overall figure does mask
some notable increases in some of england's cities. ministers insist the strategy for dealing with homelessness is working, as our social affairs correspondent michael buchanan reports. everyone calls it a young man's game. it shouldn't be no—one's game. i had a board and i had my sleeping bag. we had mice or rats. you don't really sleep, do you? just cat naps. this is england, in 2019. in the doorway of a shop selling thousand pound mattresses, ten rough sleepers seek rest. more than a600 people sleep outside each night, 2% lower than last year, 165% higher than 2010. i was in and out of doorways before and my mates said, "there's room in the tent for you."
wayne has been rough sleeping for five years, forced from home, he says, after his marriage collapsed. why don't you take up the shelter? you end up getting bullied or picked on, don't you? i'd rather be out here, it's safer. it's safer? i feel a lot safer out on the street on my own. in greater manchester, the city centre is seeing more rough sleepers but numbers have fallen in the wider region. this newly—opened hostel is part of an initiative by mayor andy burnham to provide a bed for rough sleepers all winter. everyone says, you know, i've got more lives than a family of cats, never mind one cat. the place has been a godsend to scott, who was rough sleeping while suffering from crohn's disease. i had to wear a stoma for 18 months, which sent me completely over the edge. i tried taking my life numerous times and that. i have the stoma there, like a bag with my colon coming out of it. trying to keep that clean
while being on the street and no—one offering you any help, you know, i was just waiting to die. today's figures are a snapshot, a mixture of counts and estimates from one night in november. homeless groups say they are inaccurate. in east staffordshire, for instance, the officialfigure is 11 rough sleepers but those working with local homeless people say the realfigure is a1. we know who is on the street. our local council knows pretty well who is on the street. and to come up with an accurate countjust seems a complete pointless waste of time and probably an expensive waste of money as well. —— waste of time. this costs money that could be put to the cause of helping those homeless people. while rough sleeping has increased in big cities, significant reductions in towns has led to the overall reduction. the government say their £100 million commitment to tackling the problem is making a difference. michael buchanan, bbc news. a coroner has ordered that the inquests into the deaths of five people in the guildford pub bombings should be reopened,
more than a0 years after they were suspended. four soldiers and a civilian were killed in 197a when two ira bombs went off. the orignal inquests were halted when four men were convicted of the attacks, convictions which were later quashed. the united kingdom's departure from the eu might have to be delayed if a withdrawal deal is not agreed until late march. that was the admission by the foreign secretary, jeremy hunt, who said extra time might be needed to pass the necessary legislation. that view was backed up the leader of conservative backbench mps, sir graham brady, who said he could accept a delay, as long as a deal was already agreed. 0ur deputy political editor, john pienaar, has the latest. something, anything, to brighten the brexit blues in downing street. chinese new year celebrations a week early. fortune cookies, too. what's in mrs may's? a last—minute delay to brexit? maybe.
even if there's a deal to celebrate at number 10. if we ended up approving a deal in the days before the 29th of march then we might need some extra time to pass critical legislation. but if were able to make progress sooner than that might not be necessary. passing laws, shuttling legislation between mps and peers in parliament takes time. a late deal would need time to turn it into law. no deal could mean a rush to pass legislation on immigration, health, fisheries and more, ready for life after brexit day on march the 29th. today labour's leader said any brexit delay should be used to get a deal. the government has run down the clock and continues to run down the clock. it's possible there would have to be an extension to get an agreement because we cannot leave the eu on the 29th of march without an agreement. the brexiteers seem relaxed about a short delay as long as it is short. those who want the longer delay,
the open—ended delay, we know what that's about. that's about opening the door to have a future referendum or to stop us leaving. once we've reached an agreement and we know the terms of which we're leaving, if we decide that we need another two weeks in order to finish getting the necessary legislation through parliament, i don't think anybody is going to be too worked up about that. the pressure is on. today, the government signalled next month's parliamentary break was being cancelled. we are making good progress. we are under pressure but it's all very much under control. the official line, brexit preparations are on track. all day the government's been reaching out to mps in all brexit factions — looking to build support for a deal. there's talk of more money for worse off areas. no—one will say it's about buying support but could it help win round labourmps? the areas that voted leave the most are the areas that have not had that investment. major investment, transformative investment, that's what i want to see. no—one knows if parliament will back a deal.
so many minds on all sides still to change. in the final countdown to march the 29th, brexit could still be pulled up short. john pienaar, bbc news, westminster. victims of the contaminated blood scandal have still not heard whether they will be granted extra financial support, despite a plea by the judge heading the public inquiry. the inquiry is looking at how tens of thousands of nhs patients in the 1970s and 1980s were infected with hiv and hepatitis c in what's been described as the worst ever nhs treatment failure. steve dymond, who died just before christmas, was one of those affected. his widow has told the bbc that many widows like her are being left with nothing, as our health editor, hugh pym, reports. my fear was that he would pass unnoticed and he deserved better than that. if it was not for the generosity of my friends, i would be homeless and without income.
yes, i was envisaging sort of sleeping in the car parked on the beach. the last time i saw steve and sue was in september. he'd suffered for much of his life with the debilitating infection, hepatitis c. in december, he became one of the thousands who lost their lives because of the contaminated blood scandal. i remember him as the funny, clever, gentle, loving guy that i first met as a teenager. i remember his intellect. he was just the other half of me. steve was a haemophiliac. his blood didn't clot properly. in the 1970s and ‘80s, like many others, the nhs gave him medication to help his condition but it came from infected blood donors who had not been screened. the basic plan to have children, have careers, whatever. yes, the hepatitis c did damage that. so far there has been no official
compensation to victims. there is a complex structure of payments which varies around the uk. for widows like sue in england there is a one—off payment of £10,000 which has not come through, beyond that she will have to rely on benefits. there are so many widows, of long date — some have been widowed for nearly 30 years — who are still fighting to keep their homes around them, who can't afford to live decently, who are borrowing money from family members so they can eat at the end of the month. in october, thejudge heading the public inquiry wrote to ministers saying... "throughout the preliminary hearings, there are repeated calls for financial assistance, which fully recompenses individuals and families for the losses they have suffered. decisive action on this matter should be taken and communicated to those affected are the earliest opportunity.£ the department of health said it was carefully
considering what changes would be appropriate to address concerns raised. sue will be there when the inquiry starts up again in april but it will be without steve. i know that when i'm there on my own, there will be people around me, there will be arms around their shoulder. what there won't be of course is steve to share it with. he was wanting to be there, he was planning to be there, and he was wanting to participate. he was campaigning till the end. that report there by our health editor, hugh pym. the latest figures show that italy's economy tipped into recession in the second half of last year. italy has a longstanding problem of weak economic growth and the latest downturn partly reflects wider problems across the european union. 0ur economic correspondent dharshini david is here. what is going on what is the bigger picture? as you know italy has been limping along, the sick man of
europe for some time. what is them 110w europe for some time. what is them now could be hurting us all. looking at growth, going back to the financial crisis, the economy is shrinking a few years later. the current government is elected on the promise it will raise living standards. its dispute with brussels on spending plans means confidence crumbles, borrowing costs go up. as a result the economy shrinks again at the end of last year by 0.2%. the economy was smaller than it was. a wake—up call to the whole of europe. germany is also losing momentum, eurozone growth as a result, back to slowing down to just 0.2% at the end of last year. a weaker economy is a headache for the italian government because it is sitting on a pile of debt worth £2 trillion, one of the biggest in the whole planet. of course a weaker economy as a result means the risk of a debt crisis, and
headache for brussels, just when our government wants its undivided attention on the fragile, economic backdrop, what it means is the risk of no deal scenario is heightened all—round because our very own growth here, as we will find out in a time, could be the weakest last yea rs a time, could be the weakest last years since the financial crisis. for fans of rugby union, it's that time of expectation and excitement, as the six nations' championship gets under way. wales travel to france tomorrow, italy travel to scotland on saturday, and england face the current champions ireland in dublin. ireland are ranked second in the world and coach joe schmidt is the man who's led the transformation. he's been speaking with our sports editor, dan roan. he is the new zealander who has turned ireland into a rugby powerhouse. joe schmidt has masterminded the most successful period in the national team's history but, as he prepares for the start of his final six nations before stepping down later this year, the coach told me he was focused on the job in hand. how emotional do you feel?
i'm too busy to be emotional. you know, we've got such a big game coming up. when the last whistle goes at the end of it, i'll be a little bit sad to see it go. it's been such a big part of the last six years. we've had some phenomenal times. they certainly have. schmidt's players have won the six nations, reached second in the world rankings and even beaten the mighty all blacks not once but twice. this autumn they will be among the favourites at the world cup. they are going to drive a real quest to get somewhere later on in the year but that's for later on. the six nations doesn't afford you the luxury of being other focused. schmidt's bond with ireland was forged 28 years ago when he coached at mullingar rugby club. helping out here in nearby wilson ‘s hospital school, teacher fred butler played with him back then and recalls how schmidt guided the pupils to unprecedented success.
i mean, there's a certain amount of pride that you've had some little part in being touched by his coaching abilities. he knew like i mean he was going to go on and continue coaching and make an impact on whatever team he would be involved with. schmidt and coach professionally in new zealand. jarring six years in charge rugby has boomed. there are swarms of kids training. that is what you want. the fact they are out playing rugby is even more exciting for me. with schmidt at the helm, dublin has become a fortress for ireland. in fact they have not lost at home six nations match for six years but on saturday they will face a strong england team, desperate to get back to their best.
they're going to get the loud—hailer out and make it loud and clear again to us that they are back. i think there's a fear factor for us that we're going to have to make sure we manage. the most eagerly—anticipated six nations for years, ireland have their hearts set on back—to—back grand slams for the first time. come saturday, this will be no laughing matter. dan roan, bbc news, dublin. the queen has one of the greatest collections of leonardo da vinci s drawings in the world. to mark the 500th anniversary of the old masters death, her majesty is sharing 1aa of his works with museums across the uk. 0ur arts editor, will gompertz, has been travelling around the uk to see the masterpieces on display. leonardo da vinci was the ultimate renaissance man, a polymath who could turn his mind to anything, then describe it with is hand by producing exquisite drawings, examples of which have been lent by the royal collection trust to 12 museums across the uk. each venue has a group of drawings selected to reflect the diversity
of leonardo's interests. we're in the national museum in cardiff among its 12 leonardos, all of which are magnificent, of course, but ijust wanted to point out two of the works. the first is this late anatomical drawing, which is great, but it does contain a mistake. on this left—hand edge, leonardo has left an inky thumbprint. and then over here is a drawing which shows the artist's deep interest in botany. it's a beautiful symmetrical design of a grain—bearing grass from asia known asjob's tears. at the time, it was very rare in the rest of the world. in fact, this is thought to be the first record of it in western europe. the drawingas on display here at the ulster museum in belfast give a sense of the extraordinary range of interests that leonardo da vinci had, from costume design to extreme weather effects and of course, famously, his detailed analysis of the human body, with images which are still