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iPhone Sales Unexpectedly Low; Two Syrian Ambassadors Defect; Olympic Women's Soccer Begins Today; Cursing In Office Bad Idea
Aired July 25, 2012 - 08:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. And welcome to News Stream where news and technology meet. And we begin in Syria. As fighting rages, we meet some of the rebels battling government forces.
Apple posts sales of $35 billion the last three months, but that's far less than analysts expected.
And the torch takes to the two. London is just two days away from the opening of the Olympic games.
Now the conflict in Syria is affecting the entire nation, but the heart of the struggle right now is a tale of two cities. Opposition forces are trying to secure the key northern city of Aleppo while the Syrian regime reportedly has largely routed the rebels from the capital Damascus. And the fight for Aleppo could get more heated.
Now the opposition says more than 2,000 government troops are headed to the commercial hub from the nearby town of Idlib. Meanwhile, Turkey has closed its border with Syria most likely to avoid the fallout of the fight.
Now CNN's Ivan Watson is one of a handful of foreign journalists who are reporting from inside Syria and seeing firsthand the human costs of the conflict. In this report, he witnesses the sorrow and the pride of a small northern village saying its final farewell to a fourth rebel fighter.
IVAN WATSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A father stained with the blood of his son. "This is the blood of a martyr," he yells, "of a hero, a lion. His blood is pure." That grief and pride from a man who just learned his son died in battle.
Abdul Rasheed (ph) was only 22 years old, a defector from the Syrian military. He died Tuesday morning fighting for the rebel Free Syrian Army. Rasheed (ph) is the fourth man from this small hilltop village to be killed battling the government.
A fellow fighter named Prosheed (ph) brought Rasheed (ph) home to be buried. He says Rasheed (ph) was shot in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
A helicopter killed your friend today on a rooftop on top of a building.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
WATSON: What began 17 months ago as a peaceful protest movement has morphed into a full-fledged armed insurgency composed of defector soldiers as well as students, shopkeepers, real estate agents and even members of President Bashar al-Assad's ruling Ba'ath Party.
And you were in the Ba'ath Party before.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
WATSON: For a long time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 10 years.
WATSON: The commander of a rebel group that calls itself the Syrian Falcons tells me he's fighting to free Syria for more than 40 years of dictatorship under the Assad family. And new recruits keep coming every day.
You want to fight?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
WATSON: Against the government.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
WATSON: That's why you came back to Syria.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, yeah, of course. Because he's killed everyone. He's killed my cousin. He's destroyed my village. He's destroyed my home.
WATSON: 23 year old Seprota Mein (ph) came home from a job in Dubai to start his own brigade of rebels. He brought a bag full of radios, cameras, and sniper scopes he'd bought with his own money.
And all of this is for war. You're going to fight with this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I'm not. But I go to war for my family, for my country.
WATSON: Brave talk from a young man who has yet to set foot on the battlefield.
This rebel veteran Prosheed (ph) choked back tears while talking about his friend killed in Aleppo just a few hours ago.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We must fight Bashar.
WATSON: After burying his friend, it's back to the battle.
You will go back to fight?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tonight.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tonight.
WATSON: To Aleppo.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To Aleppo.
WATSON: Ivan Watson, CNN, reporting from northern Syria.
LU STOUT: Now Prosheed (ph), who we just saw in that report, is not alone. Ivan Watson tells us that hundreds of rebels in northern Syria have loaded up with ammunition and are heading to Aleppo to defend the opposition's gains in Syria's commercial capital. And they are putting themselves at huge risk.
The opposition says 21 people were killed in Aleppo on Tuesday. And that was before the government sent reinforcements.
Now for the latest in the situation in Aleppo and the rest of Syria, Mohammed Jamjoom joins me now from CNN's Abu Dhabi bureau.
And Mohammed, Bashar al-Assad, he is striking back hard. What is the latest from the front line in Aleppo and Damascus?
MOHAMMDED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kristie, the rebel Free Syrian Army fighters told us earlier today that they had received information that there were regime forces that were being pulled from Idlib and that they were going to march to Aleppo, at least 2,000 regime forces according to the information that they're getting. And the rebel Free Syrian Army members we've spoken with say that they plan to fight them as they're on their way to Aleppo.
Now we've heard last night many reports, there were fierce clashes in Aleppo, that the rebels had gotten closer to the center of the city, to the Bab al-Hadid (ph) neighborhood, that there was guerrilla warfare going on in the streets of Aleppo.
Today we're hearing that there is shelling going on by the regime, fierce clashes going on between rebel Free Syrian Army fighters and regime security service members there as well.
As far as Damascus, Syrian army still maintaining that they've clear most of Damascus of terrorists. They're saying that they've really taken the fight to the opposition fighters there, that they've cleared them from the city. We've heard of a lot of instances of shelling in different suburbs of Damascus, heavy shelling from helicopters as well. And we're also seeing amateur video purporting to show shelling going on in Teblise (ph) in Syria.
Now all in all today we're hearing that at least 20 people have been killed throughout Syria -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: And also this day, reports of more defections from the regime. What have you heard?
JAMJOOM: Just a short while ago we got information from the Syrian National Council, that's the main opposition group. The statement was that Lamia el-Hariri, who is Syria's ambassador to Cyprus, and her husband Abdelatif al-Dabbagh who is Syria's ambassador to the UAE, that they have both defected. These are two more high level defections from the Syrian diplomatic circle.
Now we've heard from the SNC that Lamia el-Hariri is now in Qatar. We don't yet know where Abdelatif, the Syrian ambassador to the UAE is. We're trying to contact them to find out more about this.
This is also coming on the heels of a statement of defection that was issued to the al-Arabiya television network just this morning. This was from Brigadier General Manaf Tlass who made news a few weeks ago when he became the most senior ranking member of the military in Syria and a member of that inner circle of the al-Assad regime to have defected. He defected. Now he's made a statement that aired in which -- one of the things he said was to urge Syrians to unite in this impossible task to trying to preserve the country. And here's more of what he had to say in that statement of defection.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRIG. GEN. MANAF TLAS, DEFECTED FROM SYRIAN ARMY (through translator): Our duty as Syrian today is to reassure each other not to give another opportunity to this regime and whoever wants to inflame the conflict between us, as Syrians.
I call and wish for us to be united, to have a unified Syria, with a strong social fabric and independent institutions that serve Syria after Assad.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JAMJOOM: When Manaf Tlas defected, this was a key loss for Bashar al- Assad, not just because he's the highest ranking military defector as of yet in Syria, and also because he was such a close ally of the Syrian president, but also because the Tlas family is one of the most influential Sunni families in all of Syria -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah, but it is curious he waited until now to make this statement.
Mohammed Jamjoom reporting for us. We'll leave it at that. Thank you.
Now across the border in Israel, citizens are scrambling to get their hands on gas masks as fears grow for Syria's reported chemical weapons stockpile. About 4 million masks have already been allocated to Israelis through a government program launched in 2006. But concern is mounting that weapons of mass destruction held by al-Assad's embattled regime could fall into the hands of Hezbollah the Lebanese Islamist group with ties to Iran and Syria. On Tuesday, Syria's foreign ministry retreated from earlier comments in which it appeared to acknowledge storing chemical weapons.
Now up next here on News Stream, as Beijing emerges from the worst flooding in 16 years, residents of the Chinese capital are warned of more bad weather to come.
Also ahead, the Colorado theater massacre reignites the debate over gun control in the U.S. We'll hear what the president and his Republican challenger are saying about it.
LU STOUT: Welcome back.
Now Beijing is bracing for more rain just days after the Chinese capital was battered by the heaviest downpour in six decades.
Now China's state run Xinua news agency says an alert for possible mudslides has been issued across many districts in Beijing where emergency crews are still trying to clean up from Saturday's storms. Meanwhile, there is growing criticism over the government response. And it appears the disaster may have cost two local officials their jobs.
Now Beijing's mayor and deputy mayor have both resigned. Some observers speculate the resignations could just be part of a routine leadership shuffle.
Now the floods have raised questions about Beijing's infrastructure with some calling the disaster a man-made crisis. Eunice Yoon has more.
EUNICE YOON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Emotions are running high here in Fongshan (ph) a district in southwestern Beijing. This is the worst hit part of the city. It saw 18 inches of rain and 800,000 people in this district alone were affected by the flood waters. The economic damage is already racking up. It's reached $1 billion again just for this area.
The villagers have told us that they have lost everything. They said that they've been very upset, because there was no warning from the government. They said that the waters rushed in, rose about a meter, and destroyed everything in its path. They said they lost clothes, electronics, furniture.
The government officials have been coming in here during our visit. Government officials did hand out some relief like water as well as blankets. But the people here say that the authorities really should be doing more. They say that this isn't only a natural disaster, but also is caused by a man-made problem. They said that another cause is the poorly made infrastructure.
Now the clean-up effort is already well underway, but it's going to take a lot more for the government to rebuild its credibility with the people here.
Eunice Yoon, CNN, Beijing.
LU STOUT: And again, during this clean-up, after its flooding disaster, Beijing is bracing for more rain. Let's get details now from Mari Ramos. She joins us from the world weather center -- Mari.
MARI RAMOS, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Kristie, in some cases the rain has already began to fall across areas near and around Beijing.
What we have is a frontal system that has been moving through this area. And as that happens, the likelihood of rain does increase, not as heavy as what we saw before, but I think people's nerves are somewhat rattled by everything that has happened and with all of that significant flooding that occurred over the weekend.
And remember, that was just one event, that is was a spectacular event in the sense that they had over a quarter of the annual rainfall in a period of just 24 hours or less. And in spite of the infrastructure problems that they had this was a considerable amount of rainfall. And we've been talking about that, of course, for the last few days.
Now most of the heaviest rain has actually been in areas farther to the south here. You can see all of this activity, especially across southern parts of China. This is going to be the area to monitor more in terms of the heavy rainfall.
Now when we look over here at the weather map, I want to show you the scattered rain showers that are expected across northeastern China. We can see widespread areas between three, maybe five centimeters in isolated spots. But because the ground is so saturated, the risk for flooding and mudslides is still there even as we head through the next 24 to 48 hours.
Now when you head to the flatter terrain, that's when you could see that risk of flash flooding when the water rushes very quickly from the higher elevations and like what we've heard in Eunice's report that woman saying that the water just came in very, very quickly and it was up to her shoulders almost in a matter of minutes. That's what happens with flash flooding, there's usually little or no warning. And it doesn't even have to be raining in the location where you are at to see that widespread flooding. So you see all of these areas of very heavy rain. And then even as we head into areas farther to the south over here.
So more heavy rain possible as we head across this region. And remember that's going to still be a concern. But as we head through later on Thursday, that's going to be coming a little bit more in the scattered capacity, so we'll start to see somewhat of an improvement.
Across the south, a remnant of what was Typhoon Vicente is still causing some very heavy rain across this entire region. You can see the widespread rain showers there. That's expected to continue. And even around these areas of Wendong (ph) where it's already been raining so much, an additional 8 to 15 centimeters of rain are not completely out of the question.
Before we take a look at the weather, I want to leave you with these spectacular images from -- ooh, there it goes -- the Sakura-jima Volcano, the 1,060 meter volcano is one of the most active in Japan. It's located in the western portions of the south-southwestern portion of the country. And you can see the spectacular eruption that occurred.
They say that the cloud of smoke went over 1,000 kilometers into the air. The other thing is that this is not one of Sakura-jima's craters that's usually active. So that was a bit unusual. No reports of damage or injuries though.
We will take a quick break right here. Actually, we're going to take a look at your city by city forecast. Excuse me. And I'll be right back.
I was so mesmerized by those pictures of the volcano.
Anyway, I want to go ahead and show you over here some other mesmerizing things. And these are the temperatures across London. Look at that, 28 degrees. You got up to 30 yesterday. Not out of the question that you'll get to 30 again today, by the way. Winds are generally very light. Visibility not a problem. I almost think that people are going to start to complain that it's been too hot, right?
But no, I think that they've been waiting for these warm temperatures for so long, Kristie. So today, close to 30 degrees. Thursday close to 30 degrees also with a lot of sunshine.
But then we start to see the clouds start to creep in here as we head into Friday. The good news is that the rain chances have gone down from 40 percent to 30 percent. Hey, we'll take it. We want to have a beautiful day for those opening ceremonies for London 2012, right?
26 degrees. So slightly cooler also. But I don't think it's going to be too much of a bother though.
30 degrees in Paris -- hot. 30 also as we head into Berlin. So these warm temperatures expected to continue. We have a big area of high pressure in place across much of Europe being broken only by this little disturbance that got caught right here in the middle. That one is bringing some rain showers across central Europe.
Back to you.
LU STOUT: All right. Good to know. Mari Ramos there. Thank you.
And now still ahead here on News Stream, paying tribute to the victims: Batman actor Christian Bale visits Colorado in the wake of the movie theater massacre. We'll tell you how the attack is affecting gun sales in the state. And the numbers may surprise you.
LU STOUT: Coming to you live from Hong Kong, you are back watching News Stream.
Now Batman star Christian Bale has paid a surprise visit to Aurora, Colorado, the scene of last week's shooting rampage at a movie theater.
Now 12 people were killed when a gunman opened fire at a screening of The Dark Knight Rises, the latest Batman movie starring Bale. The actor earlier released a statement saying his heart goes out to the victims and their loved ones.
Now 58 people were injured in Friday's attack. And Bale visited some of the victims in the hospital. One fan says that he is still in shock that the Oscar winning actor came to see him.
Now the shooting rampage has added urgency to the U.S. debate about gun control, however, in the wake of the attacks, neither the president nor his Republican challenger has called for any new measures. Lisa Sylvester examines where they stand on the issue of gun control.
LISA SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There have been a number of recent high profile mass shootings: the attack that nearly killed Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, the Chardon, Ohio high school shooting, and last week's Colorado theater massacre. But not even this most recent rampage has prompted a call for tougher gun control laws from the two men running for president.
In recent years, the views of both President Obama and GOP candidate Mitt Romney have undergone a metamorphosis. When running for the U.S. Senate in 2004 Barack Obama called out President George W. Bush on the issue of assault weapons.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I think it is a scandal that this president did not force a renewal of this assault weapons ban.
SYLVESTER: But as president, Mr. Obama has done nothing to revive the ban himself. And even as a candidate for the White House in 2008, he came down on the side of gun rights.
OBAMA: What I believe is that there is a second amendment right. I think it is an individual right. I think people have the right to lawfully bear arms.
SYLVESTER: Mitt Romney when he was running for the senate in 1994 said, quote, I don't line up with the NRA.
And here's Romney in 2002.
MITT ROMNEY, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts. I support them. I won't chip away at them. I believe they help protect us and provide for our safety.
SYLVESTER: As governor, Romney signed an assault weapons ban for Massachusetts in 2004. But as a candidate for president this year, Romney spoke out as a guns rights advocate at the NRA convention.
ROMNEY: We need a president who will stand up for the rights of hunters and sportsman and those who seek to protect their homes and their families.
SYLVESTER: Public views on gun control have evolved. Gallup Poll numbers show in 1991 78 percent of those surveyed said gun laws should be stricter. In 2011, support for tighter gun control laws was down to 43 percent. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence says the presidential candidates have been pandering for votes.
DAN GROSS, BRADY CAMPAIGN TO PREVENT GUN VIOLENCE: There are people who are afraid, intimidated by the gun lobby. And somewhere, somehow that's playing into the political calculus as it relates to the presidential election.
SYLVESTER: One reason for the shift may simply be the effectiveness of the National Rifle Association, getting its message out. To try to counter that, the Brady campaign has set up a new website called WeAreBetterThanThis.org petitioning the presidential candidates to get off the side lines.
We reached out to the NRA for an interview, but they declined to comment. And the NRA's very influential when it comes to campaign contributions. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, NRA affiliates in the 2008 presidential cycle gave nearly $1.2 million to political candidates, 80 percent of that going to Republicans. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence package in 2008 donated about $33,000 mostly to Democrats. So a big difference in money.
Lisa Sylvester, CNN, Washington.
LU STOUT: Now it might surprise you to hear that the number of people wanting to buy guns in Colorado has actually increased since the Aurora attack. The Colorado newspaper The Denver Post reports that background checks on people seeking to buy guns in the state have gone up by more than 41 percent. And the paper says that reaction was also seen after the 2010 shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre. Now the spike has ultimately been attributed to one thing, a sense of fear.
Now the U.S. already has the highest rate of gun ownership in the world. And figures from the small arms survey monitoring group suggest that they're average of just under 89 guns to every 100 people, which is a staggering amount in comparison to other countries.
Now the number two ranking, for example, the country with a history of uprisings and troubled leadership. Where is that? Well, it's right here, Yemen where there's an average of 55 guns per 100 individuals.
But neither of those countries has the highest murder rate from shootings, that is in this region. Now the UN says Honduras, El Salvadore and Jamaica have the highest percentages of homicides by firearms.
Now you're watching News Stream. And up next, Apple may be the world's most valuable company, but the tech giant has just missed Wall Street forecasts. And perhaps the main reason, it's biggest moneymaker, the iPhone.
And women's football, it kicks off the first event of the Olympic games later today. We've got that and more coming up next.
LU STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. You're watching News Stream. And these are your world headlines.
Now rebels inside Syria say their government is sending around 2,000 troops to reinforce army units in Aleppo, Syria's commercial hub. Now meanwhile Russia's foreign minister Sergey Lavrov has accused the U.S. of justifying terrorism against the Syrian regime for not condemning attacks against members of President Bashar al-Assad's government.
Now flags in Ghana are flying at half staff following the death of President John Evans Atta Mills. Now officials have not revealed the cause of death with a 68-year-old leader. His deputy John Jermani Mahama is the west African nation's new leader. He's described Mills' death as the saddest day in the country's history.
People in flood ravaged Beijing are bracing for more rain as a massive clean-up operation continues. Now China's Xinua news agency reports that authorities have issued an alert for possible mudslides in some districts and the capital. Now meanwhile, the disaster may have claimed the jobs of two top government officials with Beijing's mayor and deputy mayor both resigning from their posts.
Now British border guards have called off a strike that was due to take place on Thursday, the day before the start of the Olympics games. Their union canceled the walkout saying the government has agreed to create more than 1,000 new jobs. London's Heathrow Airport is getting increasingly busy in the run-up to the games with 100,000 people arriving every day.
Apple says its profits are up more than 20 percent in the latest quarter, but that wasn't enough to match Wall Street's expectations. Now the main culprit, the iPhone. Apple sold 26 million iPhones, but that was far less than the 29 million analysts expected.
So why did iPhone sales fall short? Well, Apple CEO says the culprit may, in fact, be the iPhone itself, or to be more precise, rumors about the next iPhone. Now Apple hasn't announced the next iPhone, but stories about it seem to be everywhere.
On Monday, Reuters said it would feature a redesigned dock connector. Last week the Wall Street Journal said it would be thinner than the last iPhone. And last month, Gizmoto even featured this realistic 3D model of what they think the next iPhone might look like.
It seems that no matter where you look there's a story about the next iPhone before it's even been announced. And you think Apple would welcome the free publicity, but they say that it's causing people to hold off buying the current iPhone to wait for the new one.
Now let's get more analysis. Maggie Lake joins us live from an Apple store in New York. And Maggie, tell us what else stood out from Apple's numbers?
MAGGIE LAKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, you know, Kristie, it's a bad problem to have isn't it, that people want your products so bad that they're not buying for the moment. But Wall Street definitely disappointed that there aren't more people going into stores like this over the last quarter to pick up the existing iPhone.
It's kind of an interesting dilemma. And Wall Street is trying to figure out how much of it is due to the iPhone 5. A Wall Street analyst put out a note saying that that name, that word, that phrase is mentioned every 11 seconds on Twitter, which is sort of astonishing.
I'm here with Lance Ulanoff, who of course we talk to all the time when it comes to Apple. He follows this closely. Lance, how much of the myth on Apple is really about the next iPhone? Or is there something more going on in terms of competition?
LANCE ULANOFF, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, MASHABLE: Well, I think, you know, Apple is not the only game in town. There are a lot of smartphones out there. And some really good competition. I think the guys that have made the biggest noise was Samsung with the Galaxy S III which is a really lovely phone. It's a larger phone than the iPhone 4S, although it actually weighs less. It's more powerful. It's got a high resolution screen, although the iPhone 4S is more densely. So it is making a difference, yeah.
And there's a lot of this -- it's an Android phone. There's a lot of Android phones out there that are -- you know, people find them attractive.
The ecosystem isn't quite as tight as the Apple ecosystem, but you know at this point when people go and buy a phone they don't just say, oh well let's go over and get an iPhone, they say what's out there, what's on my carrier.
LAKE: So they're shopping around more.
ULANOFF: They're absolutely shopping around.
LAKE: What do we have to see from the iPhone 5 to really stand out and make sure Apple is able to sort of maintain its competitive lead if you've got the likes of Samsung nipping at you?
ULANOFF: Right. So obviously Apple in the last year-and-a-half has released an iPhone 4 and then an iPhone 4 upgrade. That's what the iPhone 4S is, it's not fundamentally different. The iPhone 5, or whatever it's going to be called, has to be -- it has to be a leap forward design-wise, technology wise. They have to have a more powerful processor. They probably have to put NFC, which is near field communication. And it has to be 4G, because 4G which is the speed of your communication, your data, is something that resonates with consumers.
LAKE: Hearing this, this brings up an interesting question. The things you're talking about -- I know tech people like you understand it, it sounds kind of technical. I mean, does it have to be something really sexy for the average consumer? I mean, people loved Siri, they love when it has to do with that sort of -- you know, that design aspect. Can they get away with just saying, oh you're applications are going to run faster. Is that going to bring people out in droves to stores like this?
ULANOFF: No. Apple is lauded for its industrial design, right? We're standing in front of the most beautiful stores that anyone has ever seen. And that kind of resonates all the way through the products.
Apple will definitely bring something that is recognizably different. So when you see the iPhone 5 you're going to be, just the way probably you were with the very first iPhone like, wow, that's beautiful, that's different, because that's actually Apple's gameplan, that's how they work. The first iPad that we saw, we were shocked. We thought it was beautiful and everybody has kind of followed suit.
So now it's time for Apple to raise it again. Believe me, I believe they're going to do it.
LAKE: Well, they're going to have to it sounds like. Lance, thank you so much.
And Kristie, that's what Wall Street is really anticipating.
Worth noting as well in those results iPad sales, the bulk of the profits still come from iPhone, but iPad sales almost doubled from the same time last year. You take that, you take the dividend, you take the fact that people think if they can deliver on this iPhone 5 Wall Street might give them a little bit of a break, might jump in if there's a pullback in the stock -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah, strong iPad sales, but still a very new and challenging landscape for Apple dealing with iPhone 5 rumors and of course Samsung.
Maggie Lake joining us live from New York. Thank you, Maggie.
Now Apple is well known for having a closed ecosystem and that may be a model for Twitter's future. The microblog CEO recently discussed his plans with the Wall Street Journal. And Dick Costello, he tells the paper he wants to move away from companies that build off of Twitter to a world where people build into Twitter.
But what does that mean? Let's bring in CNN contributor and senior editor at the New Yorker, Nicholas Thompson. Nick, it's really good to see you.
Can you interpret that quote from the Twitter CEO. I mean, what could this new potential Twitter platform look like?
NICHOLAS THOMPSON, NEW YORKER: Well, what they want is they want -- right now when somebody sends out a tweet there's usually a link at the end and you click on the link and you to some other external site. So it's a great way for sharing information and navigating around the web. They want people to sort of follow more streams and to build more communities inside of Twitter so you go inside of Twitter and you find something about the Olympics and instead of clicking out to read CNN's piece of the Olympics, you click and there's some kind of stream, some kind of garden that they have created where they have all those tweets and all kinds of information about the Olympics.
That's what they want. I don't think they really know how to build it. But there's a lot of pressure on them to do that, because they're at the -- they need to IPO in the next year or two to keep their investors and their employees happy. So they need to figure out ways to make more money.
LU STOUT: Yeah, they need to figure that out. Can they? I mean, they have about 140 million monthly users right now. They need to get big. They have this anticipated IPO. Can they become a true rival to something like Facebook?
THOMPSON: I don't think so. I mean, there's a real risk that if they try to be like Facebook they'll end up like Digg. Digg was a company that like Twitter had this huge crowd, this great user base. They made all these changes to try to pull people in, to try to make it easier for corporations, but they didn't make their users happy. And then everybody quit once and Digg is now basically dead.
So Twitter has to figure out how to make more money, right. They're making $2 per active user per year. So basically nothing, but they also can't alienate their users or they'll end up like Digg or MySpace, so it's very, very tricky. I think it's going to be risky. And I'm not sure they can -- I'm not -- from the little bit that we heard from Costello yesterday I'm not convinced they've really got something good figured out.
LU STOUT: Yeah, but Twitter is not Digg just yet. It's still very much a thriving community.
THOMPSON: God no, I mean it's...
LU STOUT: But what about its bottom line? Because, you know, you and I, we both use Twitter and I always see these promoted tweets right on the side. I mean, does it work? Are they selling ads?
THOMPSON: Well, they're selling -- you know, $840 million a year. So they're excited about it. And there are some good ways to look at that number. You can say, oh, how interesting. They're doing as well on mobile as they are on desktops. That's the differential that hurts Facebook and Google so much. Those companies are having a terrible time figuring out how to sell on mobile. Twitter, it actually works really well on mobile.
However, on the other hand, it's still a tiny, miniscule number for the amount of people who use Twitter, the amount of time they spend on it, to only be getting $2 from each of them per year, it's really, really small.
So they're going to have to have a lot more promoted tweets, they're going to have to have some other form of advertising. They're going to have to do something different. With everything they do there's going to be a risk of alienating their users and having their users go to the next thing.
LU STOUT: So we could be expecting some big platform changes ahead, especially this year.
Now as the London games approaches just two days away, there's a lot of buzz on what's being called the first social media games. I want to get your thoughts, Nick. I mean, do you think Twitter will change the Olympic experience?
THOMPSON: Well, sure. I mean, there are going to be a lot of people who follow the athletes directly. And they're going to see mostly banal tweets from the athletes. And but they'll feel like they have a connection. And in some ways, you know, athletic popularity will shift a little bit from who is the best athlete, and then it's sort of already shifted to kind of who is the most attractive, charismatic to who is the best tweeter.
So actually in sort of athletic maintenance and promotions, Twitter will play a big role. You know, some people will be following results on Twitter. Though, you know, it really -- the best place to watch 100 meter race is on the TV still, not on Twitter.
LU STOUT: Yeah. I also share the same kind of meh attitude. I just started following a few Olympians on Twitter. And there's a lot of exclamation points. They're pumped. Not that interesting. But...
THOMPSON: I know, a lot...
LU STOUT: Nick Thompson.
THOMPSON: A lot of photographs with pranks in the back rooms.
LU STOUT: Yeah, that's right, especially Michael Phelps. He likes that to. All right, Nick, we'll leave it at that. Thank you so much. We'll see you same time next week. Nick Thompson of the New Yorker there. Thank you.
Now, say cheese. These shoppers, they were just showing their Olympic support when a famous British sportsman dropped in. And we'll hear from David Beckham next.
LU STOUT: Welcome back.
Now the Olympics official begin on Friday, but the women's football tournament actually starts today. Already confused.
Pedro Pinto joins me now to explain all -- Pedro.
PEDRO PINTO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Here we go, Kristie. The football tournament just has so many matches that they need more time to fit them all in, that's why the women's football competition kicks off today in just two hours from now, to be precise.
First on the pitch will be Great Britain's women taking on New Zealand, that's at 4:00 pm local time at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
Matches are also taking place in other cities today, including France versus the U.S. in Glasgow. It's up in Scotland. You'll also have Colombia versus North Korea. And it's the case to say let the games begin.
Security has been one of the major topics of discussion leading up to the games. Britain's government is deploying extra troops for venue safety. Now there will be 18,200 troops standing guard at the Olympics.
Zain Verjee joins us live from CNN's Olympic bureau with more. Zain, is it a case of saying finally that security is sorted or not just yet?
ZAIN VERJEE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the officials here would like to say that it is totally sorted and they are ready for the security operation, that by the way, is probably the biggest since World War II that this country is launching. 18,200 military and Met Police are going to be the beefed up squad here for the Olympic games.
Let me just give you a sense, Pedro, of what fortress London will look like, OK? There are going to be 11 miles of razor wire and electric fence around this area around the stadium and the park just behind me here. You've got soldiers that are policing streets and malls as well. They're going to have weapons. And in this country mostly police don't carry arms, but during the Olympics they will.
Every car is going to be scanned really carefully. There are different rings of metal around areas at the Olympic park as well.
1,850 CCTV cameras will also be going straight to Scotland yard to monitor the situations everywhere in the city. Things like software recognition, facial recognition, the ability to zoom in from aerial views very high in the sky and look specifically at license plate numbers, things like that.
There are also going to be unmanned drones over the stadium just to keep an eye on things too, as well as controversial six surface to air missiles on buildings around east London.
So obviously security is number one here. And it is really, really tight. And one of the things that the British government would want to say is that the army is in charge now and the games are set -- Pedro.
PINTO: Zain, that is good to hear. And they will be taking no chances throughout the next three weeks or so.
Another topic of discussion if you live in London like we have for a few years now in the lead up to the games has been about traffic, hasn't it? Everyone seems to be complaining about the Olympic lanes, about how much of a nightmare it's going to be to get around. What are your latest impressions of that?
VERJEE: Well, basically what happened today was that they opened the Olympic lanes, which means if you are just an ordinary civilian like you and me you can't go in there unless you are a VIP, some kind of an official or an athlete, which means that it's going to be a real pain to get around London, right? Well, wrong, today I found that it wasn't actually a big deal. A lot of people were on their bikes. And it wasn't that difficult to get to and fro.
But as we get closer to the opening ceremonies, people are going to get more and more frustrated. There are a lot of complaints, but the Olympic lanes are going to be open in any other hours outside of 6:00 am and 12:00 am for ordinary people to use.
And if you use it when you're not supposed to use it, Pedro, you get a #200 fine. And so a lot of people are concerned about that.
PINTO: Zain, worse comes to worse, you can use your networking to get one of those VIP passes, I'm sure, and just zoom by everyone else.
Zain Verjee live from -- you do that. Zain Verjee live from our CNN Olympic bureau.
And now, I'll tell you one thing, one of the sports I'm really looking forward to watching at the Olympics is basketball. The men's tournament starts on Sunday. The gold medal favorites are Team USA and Dream Team as they're called, lived up to that feeling on Tuesday by convincingly beating the number two ranked team in the world Spain.
Ricky Rubio missed this high profile exhibition contest in Barcelona with an injury. He's still recovering from knee surgery. Spain could have used him on the night. Even though they lead briefly in the first half, Team USA eventually took control thanks to Carmelo Anthony and his sharpshooting.
The New York Knicks super star came off the bench and had the hot hand scoring 23 points in the first half alone. He finished with a game high 27 on the night.
After the break, the home team tried to stay in the contest. And they went inside to Pau Gasol. The Lakers forward had 19 points. But they just couldn't cope with the States firepower. LeBron James started to find his game, gets the slam in transition after the steal. And then later he sizes up Pau Gasol, hits a 3-pointer.
LeBron scored 25 as Team USA won comfortably 100-78. They improved to 5-0 in exhibition games this summer. They proved they will be the team to beat in London.
Well, by now we all know that David Beckham has been left off Britain's Olympic football team, but he does plan to watch. He spoke with our Amanda Davies about that and more in a one-on-one interview.
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Will you watch the GB football team?
DAVID BECKHAM, LA GALAXY MIDFIELDER: I'll probably watch them on telly. You know, I'm interested in all the GB athletes. You know, I think it's important for us to support every one of them. You know, it's such a huge occasion, a huge sporting occasion. You know, we've got so much talent in our country. You know, it's exciting to have so much on display.
DAVIES: You've met a whole host of fantastic sports people, fantastic athletes. Who has been the most impressive to you?
BECKHAM: I think, you know, meeting people like Mohammed Ali. You know, to me when I met him for the first time, you know, that was kind of - - because I don't think there is a bigger sporting icon in the history of sport than Mohammed Ali. You know, he stood for so many amazing things and did so many amazing things. You know, his whole career and his whole life kind of is about survival whether it was boxing, whether it was his life in general, or whether it was outside of the ring. You know, it was always about survival. And for me he's the most amazing sportsman I've ever met.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINTO: Great to get Beckham's thoughts.
Another British footballer who won't be at the Olympics is Gareth Bales, the Tottenham star pulled out of the games apparently due to injury. I say apparently because you're looking at Tottenham playing against the LA Galaxy in a friendly on Tuesday. And yes, this is Gareth Bales scoring for Spurs. So he seems to be all right. He played over 70 minutes in a 1-all draw in Los Angeles.
The MLS team got an equalizing goal from Brazilian David Junior Lopes after a great move.
Up next for Spurs on their U.S. tour, a clash with Liverpool in Baltimore on Saturday.
That's sports for this hour, Kristie. Back to you.
LU STOUT: Pedro, thank you.
Now does stress sometimes get the better of you at work? And if you like swearing, well, bite your tongue. As Karin Caifa tells us that off color language, it may cost you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARIN CAIFA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: On the most stressful days at the office it's easy to let a few four letter words slip.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's something I don't want to do that sometimes I do, you know, on accident. It just kind of happens.
CAIFA: But swearing in the workplace can put a dent in the reputation, according to a new CareerBuilder survey of more than 6,000 employers and employees. 57 percent of employers said they'd be less likely to promote someone who uses salty language. And more than half said it makes a worker seem less intelligent.
MICHAEL ERWIN, CAREERBUILDER: Well, a majority of employers told us that they think less of the person. And they really question their professionalism. They also talk about questioning the lack of control and their maturity.
CAIFA: Only 28 percent of workers said they directed an expletive at a colleague. Most use their language just to vent.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You get off the phone with somebody who is frustrating and you say something just to get it off your chest. So, it happens pretty frequently in my industry.
CAIFA: Regardless of the reason or how comfortable you feel around your colleagues, career experts advise you hold your tongue.
ERWIN: We're all stressed. It's leaner work forces. We're doing more work. Our work loads are increasing. But keep that level of professionalism, because what you think might be an OK word in the office your co-worker might not, or your manager might not.
CAIFA: Survey found workers here in the nation's capital the most likely to curse in the office, followed by Denver and Chicago.
Karin Caifa, CNN, Washington.
LU STOUT: Breaking the ice, quite literally, in Greenland, where new satellite pictures show the ice cover appears to be melting faster than ever.
LU STOUT: Welcome back.
Now sometimes winning can make you a big loser. Now that man you're looking at he bet his buddies that he could set his head on fire. So they took the bet. And they doused his head with rum and had a friend light it. And, uh, he won. And local police say that they're dumbfounded.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LT. BLAISE DRESSER, RICHMOND COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE: I've seen people do a lot of crazy things when they are under the influence of alcohol. I've never seen them set their hair on fire before.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT: Now the man with the flaming head. He reportedly refused medical attention at the bar, but was later taken to a hospital and released after a few days. No word if he collected on that bet.
Now an enormous iceberg has broken off a glacier in Greenland. And you can see the crack in the center of this satellite image. Now NASA says it has recorded unprecedented melting this month.
And one man got an extraordinary view of how this looks down on Earth. And Jeanne Moos shares it with us.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: He wasn't exactly as cool as ice, but at least there were no expletives to delete when this happened.
Off the coast of Greenland, part of a glacier collapsed, sending a mini-tsunami directly at this motor boat. What did Jens Mueller (ph) say?
JENS MOLLER: Wow.
MOOS: Just about every five seconds he said it.
MOOS: Until the wave hit.
The boat was sideways toward the glacier and when the Jens' (ph) uncle saw the wave coming he gunned it out of there.
MOOS: No one was hurt, not Jens, not the Australian tourist they were taking sightseeing.
MOOS: Lest you think the only language Jens speaks is, wow.
MOLLER: I've never been this close to dying. I'm never been this close to dying before.
MOOS: The thing that seemed to have impressed people was the way the shooter held the camera steady and stayed focused instead of ducking and covering. But Jens says that's only because he was looking in his viewfinder.
MOLLER: You know, the screen is pretty small. And on the screen the waves looked really, really, really small.
MOOS: Jens, a 23 year old mechanical engineering student said the ice was cracking for about four minutes before the collapse. And for some reason.
MOLLER: None of us was actually scared.
MOOS: The boat wasn't damaged until later when they hit a piece of ice underwater on their way home that damaged the steering. A relative had to come retrieve them. No wonder someone posted, "is this the prequel to Titanic?"
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Iceberg right ahead.
UNIDENTIIFED MALE: Ice, dead ahead.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Iceberg dead ahead.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Iceberg dead ahead, sir.
MOOS: Tsunami ahead, but thankful Jens isn't dead, though wow, a victim of overkill.
MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
LU STOUT: And before we go we have news that we're just getting here at CNN. We are hearing reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong un is married. Now South Korean media quotes state run TV in the north as referring to a woman as Kim's wife for the very first time. And she appears to be the same stylish young lady spotted at Kim's side during recent events. Reports name her as Ri Sol-ju. But there is no word on when the couple was married. North Korean state TV showed them together recently at an amusement park.
And we'll bring you more on Kim's apparent marriage as we get it. But that is it for News Stream today. The news continues at CNN. World Business Today is next.