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Armstrong Stripped of Race Titles; Violence in Lebanon; London Terror Trial; Final US Presidential Debate; Internet Troll Unmasked; Interview with Monty Norman; New Photo of Fidel Castro

Aired October 22, 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, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong, and welcome to NEWS STREAM, where news and technology meet. And we begin with the end of a sporting legend as cycling's governing body says Lance Armstrong deserves to be forgotten.

Mitt Romney and Barack Obama prepare to spar one last time at their final U.S. presidential debate.

And what happens when someone posting offensive content on the Internet is confronted in person. I'll bring you an exclusive interview with the notorious Internet Troll.

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STOUT: Just one hour ago, Lance Armstrong was the most decorated cyclist in the history of the sport -- not anymore. The International Cycling Union has accepted what the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency stated earlier this month, that Armstrong is a drugs cheat, that he should be banned from the sport and stripped of his record seven Tour de France titles.

He may have singlehandedly raised the profile of cycling, but little doubt remains that this living legend was living a lie. What seemed like a glittering career has been left in tatters.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PAT MCQUAID, UCI PRESIDENT: UCI wishes to begin that journey on that path forward today by confirming that it will not appeal to the court of arbitration for sport and that it will recognize the sanction that USADA has imposed.

UCI will ban Lance Armstrong from cycling and UCI will strip him of his seven Tour de France titles. Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STOUT: Armstrong has not only lost his seven Tour titles, he has lost what was left of a sporting reputation that won him countless accolades. And there's more. He could be forced to give up the Olympic bronze medal that he won in Sydney 12 years ago. The winnings from the sport dating back 14 years may also have to be handed back.

"Forbes" says that totals some $7 million. But Armstrong faces an even bigger financial hit from his extracurricular activity. He has earned about $10 million a year in speaking fees and endorsements from sponsors.

"Forbes" says he will lose out on $50 million over the five years ahead. Lawsuits could cost him more still. And sanctions could also prevent Armstrong from competing in other sports. He had recently signed a deal to take part in upcoming triathlon. That and his feature as a triathlete are still up in the air.

Today's decision has implications beyond Armstrong own future. It asks questions about the entire sport of cycling and the people of charge in it.

I'm joined now by Alex Thomas from CNN "WORLD SPORT". And Alex, first, walk us through this announcement we heard in the last hour.

ALEX THOMAS, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Kristie, it was interesting to hear Pat McQuaid, the president at the UCI, the governing body for world cycling, come out and endorse the findings the United States Anti-Doping Agency report into.

The extent of Lance Armstrong's doping, remember, they called how he and his U.S. postal teammates managed to beat the drug testers, they -- the most professional and sophisticated doping system that sport has ever seen. x

And it seems clear now that Lance Armstrong, rather than going down in history as a record-breaking Tour de France champion, will instead go down in the record books as the best cheat that sport has ever seen.

And it was also (inaudible) Pat McQuaid's words earlier because until very recently, the UCI had given every impression on siding with Armstrong against USADA. Remember, Armstrong has always denied taking drugs, a start he still takes to this day. And he also claims that USADA were trying to pinpoint him unfairly, saying it was a personal vendetta against him.

And, certainly, some of the quotes coming out of the UCI earlier this year seemed to suggest they kind of agreed with him. So instead they've now this complete U-turn, thoroughly endorsed the USADA recommendations of a lifetime ban for Armstrong and stripping him of those record seven consecutive Tour de France titles from 1999 onwards.

And I think they recognize, the UCI, that this is probably the most important moment in the sport's history right now. It's gone from being a thoroughly amateur sport almost decades ago to now being a vibrant, almost a blossoming sport in the eyes of (inaudible) some marketers refer to as the new golf, something that people like to do in their leisure time and then admire the professional cyclists at work.

But we saw the Dutch bank Rabobank pull out of sponsoring the sport last week. That was a deal worth something like $20 million, I believe, and we've also heard that the father of the Schleck brothers, Andy and Frank, who are both top riders in the sport, is urging their sons to quit, saying it's just not worth all the effort they're going through. One of them is actually fighting doping allegations right now.

So a real crossroads for cycling. And Pat McQuaid has started the ball rolling in its quest to draw a line under its murky past and to move forward from here, Kristie.

STOUT: Endorsement deals, the future of this sport up in the air, it's incredible. As you pointed out earlier, this turn by the UCI against Lance Armstrong. But how is it that leading cycling officials were just not aware of the nature of the doping scandal, what was going on, for so long?

THOMAS: I think that is the key question. And you could see Pat McQuaid getting quite defensive at times during the news conference, (inaudible) saying, well, it's all well and good that you finally admitted what most rational and independent people could see from the USADA report, that Lance Armstrong clearly was doping and was orchestrating the bullying of younger teammate to dope as well. Why is it that you stayed so quiet on this issue for so long?

Pat McQuaid was very quick to point out that he took over in 2005 after the last of Armstrong's seven Tour de France's titles. And he paints himself as the man that was trying to change cycling for the better, to get rid of the culture of doping that was clearly endemic within the sport.

He says that they didn't catch the cheats because they didn't have enough resources and the testing methods were so much less sophisticated than they are now, certainly with the help of modern technology that USADA was able to put together this thoroughly detailed reports that really finally caught Armstrong at it.

This is what Pat McQuaid had to say to those people who accuse cycling's governing body of turning a blind eye.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCQUAID: The UCI always had a commitment to the fight against doping, always had a commitment to try and protect clean riders and try and get cheats out of our sport. And if I have to apologize now on behalf of the UCI, what I will say is that I am sorry that we couldn't catch every damn one of them red-handed and throw them out of the sport.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

THOMAS: I think Pat McQuaid's done the right thing so far, Kristie. But they are still plenty of unanswered questions.

STOUT: Yes, it's an incredible story, disgrace for the sport.

Alex Thomas, joining us live from CNN London, thank you.

Now let's move on now from the Armstrong case now.

And I want to take you Beirut, where the streets are tense, emotions are still running high after the killing of the country's top intelligence chief on Friday. The roads are blocked in several neighborhoods and there are reports that at least five people have been shot in recent hours. Protesters clashed with police on Sunday. They say Syria was behind the attack.

And what (ph) the prime minister step aside, saying he is too close to Damascus. Now in a statement issued on Monday, Lebanon's military said the nation is facing a critical phase. For the latest now we're joined now live by CNN's Nick Paton Walsh in Beirut.

And, Nick, first, what is the latest on the unrest today?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We've been out in the streets of Beirut, some of the areas which saw clashes earlier on today, I think it's fair to say that when you talk (inaudible) bring out the Lebanese army moving quite quickly to quell the one particular area where we were at, it appears that local Sunni (ph) in their own particular neighborhood erected a barrier on one of the roads.

The Lebanese army moved in after brief clashes, cleared that out. A more troubling instance, too, on what seems to have been one of the sectarian fault lines that run through this (inaudible) 1980 civil war here between the Sunni and Shia (inaudible) same sectarian division playing out in the Syrian civil war next door.

One of these fault lines in Tariq al-Jadida (inaudible) much of the violence inside Beirut overnight. We heard a troubling story from locals. They spoke of two boys riding on a scooter toward them, that particular sectarian fault line, and said that one of them had been shot dead and a second injured.

Now we have (inaudible) official confirmation on that there, but they (inaudible) sadly, blood on the floor as well. Quite who did the shooting nobody knows. There was initial speculation it may have been the military but then locals denied that. (Inaudible) come from the neighboring district, which they said were predominantly Shia.

But frankly, the exact facts of this (inaudible) going to cause people to get angry in the days ahead. They already were talking about the dead man's family seeking revenge, talking about anger in the neighborhood. And I think really it's about who they choose to blame for this that may cause that retaliation. And that's when you see the dangerous cycle of violence.

On the whole though, the capital reasonably quiet; uneasy, certainly, at the violence overnight which has blocked some of the village roads, caused some injuries and (inaudible) people here.

On the whole, the atmosphere is comparatively calm, but certainly fragile and fears really that if this continues tomorrow, every day (inaudible) waking up hoping that yesterday was the last violence it would have seen if it continues tomorrow again, perhaps (inaudible) new cycle of violence here, Kristie.

STOUT: So the atmosphere there is calm, but, as you say, fragile. The Lebanese army has been mobilized. How is it responding to the clashes? I understand it issued a strongly worded statement.

WALSH: It was interesting to see the Lebanese army come up with quite such a sort of severe rhetoric really. They called this crisis unprecedented. They called the mobilization of society that's happening, referring to the different groups bringing their (inaudible) out onto the street. They called that unprecedented.

The tone of the army statement was sort of saying that fiscal leadership really isn't helping here. But they will let the politicians bicker amongst themselves and try and keep the country together. I'm paraphrasing here. But they also said they won't allow anybody to use the assassination of top intelligence official Wissam al-Hassan as an excuse for the assassination of the country of Lebanon.

I think really raising here the fear that if this cycle of violence continues, if it -- these are pockets of unrest (inaudible), you may start seeing retaliation on the other side, drag the country into that (inaudible) sectarian whirl it was in in the 1980s.

No one's suggesting that's imminent. But certainly a Lebanese statement from the military at that level of concern certainly makes everyone feel that certainly the army here are concerned, Kristie.

STOUT: All right. Nick Paton Walsh, reporting for us live at the scene, thank you.

Now in neighboring Syria, the death toll from its civil war, it just rises every day. Opposition activist say at least 135 people were killed across the country on Sunday. Now international attempts to stem the violence are ongoing.

The new Arab League envoy, Lakhdar Brahimi, met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to try to negotiate a cease-fire ahead of the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, which begins on Friday.

Coming up, the stakes are high in Boca Raton, where the U.S. presidential candidates will square off in their final debate. Now they will be focused on just one subject: foreign policy.

Then the ugly side of a beautiful game. Why Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand snubbed an anti-racism campaign on Sunday.

And unmasking a reviled Internet troll, the creator of "Creepshots" and "Jailbait" talks about his descent into some of the dark parts of the Web.

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STOUT: Welcome back. And the latest in the Jimmy Savile scandal, the BBC announced on Monday that editor Peter Rippon of the current affairs program "News Night" is to step aside as an inquiry investigates why his show never covered an investigation to allegations of sexual abuse by Savile.

The deejay who died nearly a year ago was accused of sexually abusing women during the 1960s and '70s. One woman claims she was 14 at the time. The BBC says the editor' s initial explanation as to why he chose to ax the investigation is that it was inaccurate or incomplete in some aspects. The network says it has launched an independent review by former Sky news head Nick Pollard.

STOUT: Also in London a major terrorism trial is underway. Three men are accused of plotting what could have been one of the biggest ever terrorist attacks in the U.K. Dan Rivers joins us now live from London.

And, Dan, tell us about the accused and the charges that they're facing.

DAN RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, these are three men whose trial began this morning. As you say, accused of a major terrorist plot involving up to eight rucksack bombs, some of which would have been suicide bombs, some of which would have been detonated on timers.

The court Holbein Altman QC (ph) setting up the prosecution case against these three men, Irfan Naseer, Irfan Khalid and Ashik Ali; Irfan Naseer facing five counts, including traveling to Pakistan for terrorism training, fundraising, assisting others to travel, recruiting others for terrorism and planning a bombing campaign; Irfan Khalid, who's 27, again, traveling to Pakistan, fundraising, recruiting others and planning a bombing campaign; and Ashik Ali, accused of three counts: fundraising, recruiting and planning a bombing campaign.

The court heard how this would have been a potentially a bomb campaign that would have been bigger than the 7/7 bombings in 2005. One of the men ,the court heard, said the plan was going to be another 9/11. Eight rucksack bombs were designed to cause mass deaths and casualties. The three men here, we were told, the jury were told, were central figures in this plot. Two of them had been to Pakistan on terrorist training .

They were influenced by Anwar al-Awlaki from Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, who was killed just after the men were arrested and they went into various details about the fundraising activities; they were fundraising on the streets of Birmingham, the court heard, fraudulently claiming to be raising money for a Muslim charity, 13,500 pounds raised fraudulently, some of which went towards this terrorist plot. All of the men deny the charges and the trial is due to last for several weeks.

STOUT: All right. Dan Rivers there, following the details of this trial very closely, thank you.

Now after unsavory scenes in Serbia last week, the issue of racism in football remains under the microscope. The Professional Footballers' Association in England has backed Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand and his decision to snub the anti-racism "Kick It Out" campaign over the weekend.

The defender was one of a number of players decided against wearing this campaign T-shirt. But it was decision that his manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, described as embarrassing.

Rio's brother, Anton, and Manchester City's Micah Richards are just some of the other players who took this step as a protest over perceived lack of commitment by the football association in tackling this issue.

You're watching NEWS STREAM. And coming up next, we are on the campaign trail in the United States. And we are live in Boca Raton, Florida, headed to the third and final U.S. presidential debate. Sparks, they will fly, as the candidates discuss this round: foreign policy.

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STOUT: Coming to you live from Hong Kong, you are back watching NEWS STREAM.

We have covered Lance Armstrong's fall from grace. A little bit later we'll look at a bizarre reappearance for Fidel Castro. But now it's time to focus on the race for the White House.

U.S. President Barack Obama will face Republican rival Mitt Romney for the third and final debate in the key swing state of Florida on Monday. And the showdown will focus entirely on international affairs.

And it is a pivotal subject in the race for the White House. The Obama campaign has repeatedly tried to paint Romney as unprepared for the world stage. But the president himself has been criticized over his government's handling of the Benghazi consulate attack last month and Iran.

On Sunday the White House denied a "New York Times" report that said it agreed to hold direct talks with Iran on its nuclear program. Monday night's debate will take place at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida, and CNN's political editor Paul Steinhauser is there. And he joins us now live for a preview.

Paul, what should we expect?

PAUL STEINHAUSER, CNN POLITICAL EDITOR: Kristie, I think you can expect some fireworks at this debate. And here's one reason why.

The national polls and the state polls here in this race for the White House indicated it's very, very close, basically a tie between both Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama and that's why there is so much at stake at this third and final faceoff between the two candidates.

Also expect both men to pick up where they left off last week at the second presidential debate in New York.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FORMER GOV. MITT ROMNEY, R-MASS., PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: When we have four Americans killed there, when apparently we didn't know what happened, but the president, the day after that happened, flies to Las Vegas for a political fundraiser.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): From Libya to China --

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Governor, you're the last person who's going to get tough on China.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): The clashes at the second presidential debate may have been just the appetizer. The candidates are likely to spar over many of the world's hot spots, including Iran, Israel, Mideast (sic) peace, the war in Afghanistan, Pakistan and terrorism.

The format for this debate is different, with six 15-minute segments.

PETER EYRE, SR. ADVISER, COMMISSION ON PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES: The segments will be divided up into 2-minute responses from each candidate, and then about an 81/2-minute discussion.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): After standing at their first two debates, this time around, President Obama and Mr. Romney will be seated at the same table along with moderator Bob Schieffer of CBS News.

EYRE: I think the combination of having the candidates seated at a table very close together and the extended discussion phase will really enable an opportunity for the candidates to have a deep discussion about these six topics. And we think there will be a great opportunity for exchange between the candidates.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): At a charity dinner the other night, both candidates joked about the debate.

OBAMA: Monday's debate is a little bit different because the topic is foreign policy. Spoiler alert: we got bin Laden.

ROMNEY: Let me tell you what I do. First, refrain from alcohol for 65 years before the debate.

(LAUGHTER)

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): Except for a short break, Romney took on Sunday to watch a beach football game between his campaign staff and some in the media, both he and the president have been behind closed doors preparing for the debate.

And it's no wonder. A new NBC News/"Wall Street Journal" national poll indicates it's dead even between the two candidates among likely voters. And Romney appears to be catching up with the president when it comes to which man would be a better commander in chief.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STEINHAUSER: Here's another reason why there's so much at stake. This is the last opportunity for both of these men to reach out to a television audience in the United States. It's going to be probably over 60 million viewers. After this debate is over, just two weeks left until Election Day, Kristie.

STOUT: You know, it's amazing just how tight this race is, just going into the third and final debate. And even though tonight's debate is about foreign policy, will the economy, the number one issue with American voters, will that be pushed front and center?

STEINHAUSER: It will be, because let's be honest: both of these candidates are very good at pivoting when answering a question and I think both men will try to pivot to the economy, which, as you mentioned, is still, by far, the top concern for American voters, especially on the issue of China and trade with China. I think you'll see that come up by -- and both candidates will mention the economy, Kristie.

STOUT: And last week's town hall-style debate, I mean, it was pretty confrontational between Obama and Romney. We have a different format tonight. So should we expect similar fireworks or more subdued today in Florida?

STEINHAUSER: Well, maybe yes ,maybe no. Here's why: there is about seven or eight minutes for each candidate to kind of interact after each one gets a two-minute answer to the moderator's question. So there is a lot of time for the back-and-forth.

But they will be sitting at a table. And that does not allow them to walk around as they did in last week's debate; does not allow them to get in each other's faces. And it's also more intimate setting when you're just sitting a few feet away from your rival, Kristie.

STOUT: And Paul it's just two weeks to go. Could this final foreign policy debate help determine this election?

STEINHAUSER: These debates have been outsized in their importance. I mean, the first debate, which was generally considered to be won by Mitt Romney, really changed the polling here in the United States, both nationally and in the States.

The second debate, which the president seemed to have a slight edge in, that's tightened things up. So, yes, this third debate could be very, very influential in deciding who wins two weeks from tomorrow, Kristie.

STOUT: All right. The stakes are so high. Paul Steinhauser reporting for us, thank you.

And don't forget that you can watch the debate live on CNN. It starts on Tuesday morning at 8:00 in the morning in Hong Kong; that's 4:00 in Abu Dhabi or if you miss that, you can see a replay of the full debate around this time tomorrow. It starts 7:00 pm Tuesday night in Hong Kong and replaces NEWS STREAM tomorrow.

Now it is easy to say anything when no one knows who you are. Up next, CNN speaks exclusively to one of the Internet's biggest trolls. He thought anonymity was his greatest friend until he went too far.

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KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong.

You're watching NEWS STREAM.

And these are the world headlines.

Now, cycling's governing body has stripped Lance Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles. Doping allegations have followed Armstrong throughout his career, but evidence released by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency led to sponsors abandoning Armstrong.

Well, simmering political tensions in Lebanon have erupted in violence. At least four people have been killed and dozens wounded in Southern Beirut. Anti-government protesters have been calling for the resignation of the prime minister. The unrest follows the killing of Lebanon's intelligence chief in a car bombing.

A new photo has emerged of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro. Now, former Venezuelan vice president, Elias Jaua, says he met the 86-year-old on Saturday. Now, there have been rumors that Castro was on his deathbed, but the Venezuelan politician says, quote, "He's doing very well."

Now, the Internet allows all of us a certain degree of anonymity. You can use a nickname instead of your real name, a fake picture instead of your actual face. And this lets people separate who they are online with who they are in real life.

Now, we're going to bring you a story about what happens when that anonymity is stripped away and what happens when someone has to face the repercussions of their online actions.

Now, the story we're bringing you, it revolves around the site, Reddit. Now, this is a massive online discussion forum to discuss virtually anything, from world news to video games.

They've been talking about trees.

And behind Reddit are some very simple principles. Anyone can create a community on Reddit. Each community is independent and moderated by volunteers. And everyone is anonymous.

Now, this site is huge. Last month, they had over 42 million visitors. And two months ago, they hosted a discussion with the U.S. president.

But there are also other corners of Reddit, communities with material that may not be illegal, but which do go beyond certain boundaries.

Now, a warning -- what you're going to be seeing right now and listening to is just subjects you may find disturbing and certainly not suitable for children. We're going to show an interview with a man who created several of Reddit's most unsavory communities, like Jail Bait, which contains suggestive photos of triggers, or Creep Shots. Those are voyeuristic photos taken of women without their knowledge. One even had pictures of dead children.

Now, the user behind them is called Violent Acres, but he is really a man named Michael Brutsch, a computer programmer from Texas who lost his job once his identity was discovered.

And Drew Griffin spoke to him exclusively.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DREW GRIFFIN, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: The problem is the kids, the teenagers, the pictures, weren't yours.

MICHAEL BRUTSCH, JAIL BAIT FORUM CREATOR: That is correct.

GRIFFIN: You didn't know who those kids were.

BRUTSCH: No. And neither did anyone else. We did our best to maintain the anonymity of these people without thinking, you know, about the -- the wider repercussions.

If people were to tell us, I know that person or this was me, we would remove them. Well, I say we would remove them. This is one of the big problems. Well, I mentioned that you can't delete anything from Reddit.

GRIFFIN: If a teenage girl is out there, and for some reason or another, a picture of her in her underwear gets posted on a site called Jail Bait, you would expect her to contact some guy named Violent Acres and ask for that picture to be removed from this Web site because it is very embarrassing to me?

I mean this whole thing sounds -- I've got to tell you, it sounds crazy. I'm a father of a daughter. I would be very mad at you.

BRUTSCH: I understand that. And all I can say is that, you know, I'm -- I'm sorry. I have made mistakes. I -- I understand that, you know, Reddit encouraged and enabled this sort of behavior. And I shouldn't have been a part of it. Nobody -- you know, nobody on Reddit really -- really had anything to say about it at all.

And since then, you know, I have -- I have come to understand that there are, you know, there are situations where, uh, you know, things are inappropriate.

I started off posting lots of porn, and -- and mostly soft core porn - - you know, pictures of naked girls, that sort of thing. And as I'd -- as I'd find porn of different types, like if it was a picture of a -- an African-American woman, I created a -- a Reddit called women of color. If it was, you know, a woman with large breasts, I created a Reddit called Boobies.

I saw it as creating folders to file things in. I created probably 600 Reddits, or sub forums, in the time I was on Reddit. And I just put things, you know, as I -- as I came across the images, I put them in these -- these categories.

There are hot button topics that you can make a comment about and -- and just enrage people. And, sadly for me, I enjoyed doing that. I liked going in and making people really mad over what amounted to meaningless things.

GRIFFIN: Sadly, you say?

BRUTSCH: Well, yes. Obviously, it has -- it -- it has a -- affected me. It's affected my family. It's affect -- you know, it's...

GRIFFIN: Some would say it caught up with you.

BRUTSCH: Well, it did. It -- it actually did catch up with me. I treated Reddit like a game. I just, you know, apparently, I have a gift for pushing buttons. I don't...

GRIFFIN: But did you ever think, I mean, Jail Bait, Rape Bait, Incest, pics of dead kids, Choke A Bitch.

I mean did you...

BRUTSCH: Well...

GRIFFIN: -- ever think, these aren't normal buttons I am pushing here?

BRUTSCH: Well, because -- and this goes back to how the Violent Acres character first started. My first thought was -- or Violent Acres' first thought was, you know, I see those pictures on my -- on my incoming image stream all the time. I could easily create a Reddit for that and fill it up with some pictures.

So I did. Two outraged people. I have no idea where the pictures came from. I created, back in the day, I created a -- a Reddit called r/rape for rape jokes. I created one called...

GRIFFIN: Rape jokes?

BRUTSCH: Rape jokes. One called r/pregnant for pictures of pregnant women.

GRIFFIN: Are you apologizing for what you did or are you trying to make an excuse...

BRUTSCH: Well, I...

GRIFFIN: -- for what you did?

BRUTSCH: -- I am, to some degree, apologizing for what I did. Again, I was playing to an audience of college kids. And, you know, when two years ago, when I -- when I was -- when all of this was at its height, the audience was appreciative and supportive of the sort of gallows humor that I put out there.

GRIFFIN: Did you get a thrill out of that?

BRUTSCH: Honestly, the biggest thrill I got was those meaningless Internet points.

GRIFFIN: Michael, I still don't understand, really...

BRUTSCH: Yes?

GRIFFIN: ... Why you did this at all, why you kept pushing the envelope.

BRUTSCH: It had a reward. I'm like the -- the -- the monkey in the - - you know, the monkey that pushes the button and gets the food pellet. It -- it's addictive, you know.

Why -- why do people spend money playing WOW?

Why do people play -- play games like that, to -- to build up their meaningless stats?

What does 300 million mite (ph) mean in Kingdoms of Camelot?

Exactly the same as 800,000 karma means on Reddit. It's just -- yes, I -- I don't know.

GRIFFIN: You were outed.

BRUTSCH: Yes.

GRIFFIN: So far, it's not been good.

BRUTSCH: And I anticipate it will get much worse. I -- I can't see it getting any better.

GRIFFIN: Was this a huge mistake?

BRUTSCH: Um, well, if I look back on it, yes, it probably was.

GRIFFIN: What happens now?

You've lost your job.

BRUTSCH: I've lost my job. I'm going to lose my home. I'm -- my health insurance is gone. My wife is disabled. I really don't know. At this point, I suspect I'm going to, you know, probably move back up to Arkansas with her family and, you know, I -- I really don't see myself being able to get a job.

GRIFFIN: You know, Anderson outed you without saying your name a year ago, right?

BRUTSCH: Right.

GRIFFIN: You could have stopped then.

Is the only reason you're stopping is because we now know who you are?

BRUTSCH: Uh, yes. There's really no point anymore. No one is going to, you know, no one's going to -- to buy into the Violent Acres mystique anymore, because it's gone.

That and the fact that I, you know, I have, as with the -- the rape and pregnant Reddits, I have come around, over the last few months, to understand that -- that some of these things can be harmful to other people.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

STOUT: It's incredible how he described his online self as a, quote, "character." But perhaps the most amazing thing about the story is this. Violent Acres was actually given an award by Reddit.

Now just watch this, an exchange between Brutsch and CNN's Drew Griffin.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRUTSCH: This is the Reddit, the little Reddit alien. And this is actually a -- a -- a gold -- a gold-plated -- they only -- they only gave these out to -- to people who had made significant contributions to the site. It's plated in gold.

GRIFFIN: You're kidding?

Wait a minute, wait a minute.

BRUTSCH: I am not kidding.

GRIFFIN: This is an award you got from Reddit...

BRUTSCH: From Reddit.

GRIFFIN: -- for creating Jail Bait?

(END VIDEO TAPE)

STOUT: You saw it there, a gold-plated trophy.

Now, Reddit told CNN it now regrets sending that trophy and says that the award was based on a community vote.

Now, Reddit also gave us a statement about controversial content. It said this, quote, "Reddit follows all the legal requirements regarding illegal content, including reporting to the proper authorities. By its nature, the moderates are Reddit have complete control over the sub- sections they start, unless they violate site rules or the law."

Now, time for a look at the global weather forecast now.

(WEATHER REPORT)

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STOUT: Welcome back.

And James Bond is back in theaters this Thursday, bringing with him the prerequisite guns, girls and gadgets. But as "Sky Fall" hits the big screen, audiences can look forward to another familiar feature, the music.

Neil Curry met the musicians behind the iconic soundtrack to find out how the dum-da-da-da-di-dum-dum did the trick.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(music)

NEIL CURRY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): British composer Monty Norman was hired by the "Bond" producers in 1962 to write the score for their first Bond film, "Dr. No." All went well at first, but as the film's release date approached, the opening theme remained elusive.

MONTY NORMAN, BOND THEME COMPOSER: I suddenly remembered this little tune that was in my bottom drawer from -- from "A House for Mr. Biswas" called "Bad Sign, Good Sign." So I dug it out and, um, I thought, this is very Asian. You know, it goes...

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NORMAN: I thought this isn't right. So I suddenly had the idea of -- of splitting the notes.

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NORMAN: Now, the moment I did that, the whole feeling of the song changed. I mean it was suddenly sinister and really -- it really worked, I thought, for the character of James Bond, had the atmosphere, the ambience. And I thought this was it. And I developed it from there.

CURRY: With time running out, composer and bandleader, John Barry, was brought in to orchestrate Monty Norman's theme.

JOHN BARRY, BOND THEME ORCHESTRATOR: I can't do this. I said, do you want this?

I -- you know, I have to -- I have to just go off and fly like I can fly. Then you want it by Wednesday?

You know, this is -- this is Saturday morning. This is nuts. I haven't seen the movie. I've never read a James Bond book. I said, I know he's a strip cartoon, he's a spy, you need excitement, whatever.

CURRY: Barry brought in rock guitarist Vic Flick, whose electric guitar riff replaced the original sound of the Indian sitar.

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VIC FLICK, BOND THEME ORCHESTRATOR: (INAUDIBLE) 10 shillings, which is about $15. I had no idea that the -- that it was going to -- even going to lead to another film, because at the particular time, the Broccolis (ph) hadn't even got a distributor for it, you know. And they -- I think they were down to their last 50 cents.

BARRY: They then made me an offer of 200 -- 250 pounds, OK. I went home. Maurice Binder called me and said that the title is now running about at two minutes, 20 seconds or whatever, recorded it, that was it.

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CURRY: Fifty years and 23 films later, I'm in for a surprise, as Monty Norman produces a rather ragged piece of music manuscript.

NORMAN: I started with the dum-dum-dum-dum.

CURRY: It's his original score for the James Bond theme.

NORMAN: Dum-dum-dum-dum, with that dum-dum-dum underneath it.

CURRY (on camera): So, Monty, this -- this, to me, is incredible. It's a real piece of music history.

NORMAN: Yes.

CURRY: And I want to know why this isn't in a frame or a museum.

NORMAN: Well...

CURRY: Tell me about it.

NORMAN: -- I kept that in a safe for ages, so my grandchildren could have that some time. What I think I'd better do is frame it. There's the -- the original melody. And then it goes on da-da-da-dee, da-dee-da-da -- where are we?

Da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da- and the chord with a question mark.

In the film, when Sean is sitting at the gambling -- gambling table and, uh, you see the lower part of his body. And slowly the -- the camera pans up to his face. And he says...

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NORMAN: The music, "The James Bond Theme" comes in behind him.

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NORMAN: I think from that moment onwards, Sean -- Sean was a star. "The" -- "The James Bond Theme" was imprinted in people's minds and the whole James Bond franchise was up and running.

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CURRY: Neil Curry, CNN, London.

(END VIDEO TAPE)

STOUT: I love that final chord.

You're watching NEWS STREAM.

And still to come, Fidel Castro makes a rare and unusual appearance. We'll be live in Havana, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

STOUT: Now, Fidel Castro is alive and well, apparently. New photos have emerged of the former Cuban leader, including this one of him in a minivan. Well, the former Venezuelan vice president, Elias Jaua, says he met the 86-year-old on Saturday, contradicting rumors that Castro was on his deathbed.

Now, here is a closer look at the photo, proving that Castro is alive. It shows Fidel smiling, waving and looking relaxed in a checked shirt and that straw hat.

Now, it is the first time the former Cuban leader has been seen in public since March.

Let's bring in Patrick Oppmann, live from Havana, Cuba -- and, Patrick, this is a curious photo of Fidel Castro. He's wearing that straw hat and what appears to be a tourist snapshot.

Has the photo eased speculation about his health?

PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and we're seeing even more photos this morning here in Havana, Kristie.

Fidel Castro says that he -- he's not only healthy, but he's so healthy that he doesn't remember what a headache feels like. And Cubans getting their local newspaper here today were treated to not one pages, but three pages of photos of Fidel Castro. More photos of him in that straw hat on a farm near where we believe he lives.

And Fidel Castro says in this article that was published today here in Cuba that he's not only been following reports of his ill health, some reports saying that he'd already passed on, but he calls those reports "stupidities."

Fidel Castro explained that his silence is that he's just moved on to do other things, that he'll no longer have a regular newspaper column, that he's studying now, that he's writing, but don't think that he's a -- a very different Fidel Castro, because a Venezuelan official who met with him over here on the weekend, who essentially broke the news that Fidel Castro is alive and well, said that that meeting went on for some five hours, Kristie.

So apparently Fidel Castro is still, uh, talking, as he has over the years on and on and on, at least when the occasion strikes him -- Kristie.

STOUT: Also, Patrick, last week, we understand, Cuban state media released the first communique said to be from Fidel Castro.

What was in the message?

OPPMANN: You know, that was sort of a -- a very boilerplate message. A lot of people here doubted that he had -- he'd written it. It was just a message congratulating students.

Today, the message that's in the paper is vintage Fidel Castro. He's defending, some 50 years later, Cuba's decision to put Soviet nuclear missiles here during the Cuban missile crisis. He's talking about his love of technology and science. And he's also, as Fidel Castro is apt to do, attacking his critics, saying that his critics will never believe that he's -- his health isn't failing, that they'll always spread lies about him, and that he says he's quite well.

You know, the photos show, obviously, a Fidel Castro who's not in the greatest of health. He looks very frail in those photos. But I think the key thing that we've taken from this is that he's alive, that the rumors that had him on death's door, as always, were very premature -- Kristie.

STOUT: All right, Patrick Oppmann joining us live from Havana.

Thank you very much, indeed.

And that is NEWS STREAM.

But the news continues at CNN.

"WORLD BUSINESS TODAY" is next.

END