BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: Business
Front Page 
UK Politics 
Market Data 
Your Money 
Business Basics 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Monday, 29 January, 2001, 02:25 GMT
Internet insults traded globally
Madmundo website
The debate was broadcast on the Madmundo website
By Tom Gibb in Brazil

An internet debate between participants of the World Economic Forum in Davos and anti-free trade activists attending the World Social Forum in Brazil has rapidly turned into a slanging match.

The debate, which included the international financier, George Soros and UN officials on one side, and anti-Davos activists on the other, was broadcast on the internet.

George Soros
Soros: Blamed African poverty on corrupt leaders
The debate arranged by the independent French media group, Article Z, was aimed at producing some dialogue between those in Davos and the protesters in Porto Alegre, but it quickly descended into insults.

Walden Bello in Porto Alegre, who heads the group called Focus on the Global South, said that it would be good if the thousands of businessmen in Davos could be loaded into a spaceship and for that spaceship to take off.

You are hypocrites, monsters, you consume everything

Hebe de Bonafini, Argentine anti-globalisation activist
An Argentine activist then accused George Soros of being "a hypocrite and a monster".

George Soros, for his part, told Africans that their poverty was the fault of their corrupt leaders.

Speculation tax

One of the few areas of agreement was when George Soros said he supported the idea of a tax to be levied on international speculative capital.

I am looking at your face and all I can do is smile, you have broken off all dialogue

George Soros responds to Hebe de Bonafini
This is one of the proposals put forward by those in Porto Alegre.

Earlier, organisers of the World Social Forum announced that they intend to make the anti-Davos meeting an annual event, but they also received the brunt of protests from some of those attending the conference.

A news conference was interrupted by dozens of black activists complaining that they were under-represented on the Forum.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
See also:

27 Jan 01 | Americas
Brazilian protesters raid GM farm
28 Jan 01 | Business
UN chief warns business
28 Jan 01 | Business
Mass arrests after Zurich violence
28 Jan 01 | Business
Tech firm worries at Davos
28 Jan 01 | Business
Press attacks Davos crackdown
27 Jan 01 | Business
Gates millions for Aids research
27 Jan 01 | Business
Mori talks up Japan recovery
Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Business stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Business stories