B2 - Lesson 01

Part 1 : Video Lesson & Transcript

Part : Listening & Reading comprehension

Part 3 : Use of English

Part 4 : Grammar lesson

Part 5 : Writing an essay & corrections

Part 6 : Speaking, interaction, & explanations.


Please make sure you unfold each content for each part of the lesson.  Merci de déplier chaque contenu pour chaque partie de cette leçon.



See instructions beneath the video.


"Facebook’s role in Brexit -and its threat to democracy"


Facebook's role in Brexit -and its threat to democracy

Carole Cadwalladr talks about the influence of Facebook on UK politics 




1) Listen to the video without reading the text / transcript

2) Then Listen to the video again reading the transcript as you listen.

3) Then listen to the video again without reading the transcript.



So, on the day after the Brexit vote, in June 2016, when Britain woke up to the shock of discovering that we're leaving the European Union, my editor at the "Observer" newspaper in the UK asked me to go back to South Wales, where I grew up, and to write a report. And so I went to a town called Ebbw Vale. 

Here it is. It's in the South Wales Valleys, which is this quite special place. So it's had this very, sort of rich, working-class culture, and it's famous for its Welsh male voice choirs and rugby and its coal. But when I was a teenager, the coal mines and the steelworks closed, and the entire area was devastated. And I went there because it had one of the highest "Leave" votes in the country. Sixty-two percent of the people here voted to leave the European Union. And I wanted to know why. 

When I got there, I was just a bit taken aback, because the last time I went to Ebbw Vale, it looked like this. And now, it looks like this. This is a new 33-million-pound college of further education that was mostly funded by the European Union. And this is the new sports center that's at the middle of 350-million-pound regeneration project that's being funded by the European Union. And this is the new 77-million-pound road-improvement scheme, and there's a new train line, a new railway station, and they're all being funded by the European Union. And it's not as if any of this is a secret, because there's big signs like this everywhere. 

I had this sort of weird sense of unreality, walking around the town. And it came to a head when I met this young man in front of the sports center. And he told me that he had voted to leave, because the European Union had done nothing for him. He was fed up with it. And all around town, people told me the same thing. They said that they wanted to take back control, which was one of the slogans in the campaign. And they told me that they were most fed up with the immigrants and with the refugees. They'd had enough. 

Which was odd. Because walking around, I didn't meet any immigrants or refugees. I met one Polish woman who told me she was practically the only foreigner in town. And when I checked the figures, I discovered that Ebbw Vale actually has one of the lowest rates of immigration in the country. And so I was just a bit baffled, because I couldn't really understand where people were getting their information from. Because it was the right-wing tabloid newspapers which printed all these stories about immigration. And this is a very much left-wing Labour stronghold. 

But then after the article came out, this woman got in touch with me. And she was from Ebbw Vale, and she told me about all this stuff that she'd seen on Facebook. I was like, "What stuff?" And she said it was all this quite scary stuff about immigration, and especially about Turkey. So I tried to find it. But there was nothing there. Because there's no archive of ads that people had seen or what had been pushed into their news feeds. No trace of anything, gone completely dark. And this referendum that will have this profound effect forever on Britain -- it's already had a profound effect: the Japanese car manufacturers that came to Wales and the north east to replace the mining jobs -- they are already going because of Brexit. 

And this entire referendum took place in darkness, because it took place on Facebook. And what happens on Facebook stays on Facebook, because only you see your news feed, and then it vanishes, so it's impossible to research anything. So we have no idea who saw what ads or what impact they had, or what data was used to target these people. Or even who placed the ads, or how much money was spent, or even what nationality they were. 

But Facebook does. Facebook has these answers, and it's refused to give them to us. Our parliament has asked Mark Zuckerberg multiple times to come to Britain and to give us these answers. And every single time, he's refused. And you have to wonder why. Because what I and other journalists have uncovered is that multiple crimes took place during the referendum. And they took place on Facebook. 

That's because in Britain, we limit the amount of money that you can spend in an election. And it's because in the 19th century, people would walk around with literally wheelbarrows of cash and just buy voters. So we passed these strict laws to stop that from happening. But those laws don't work anymore. This referendum took place almost entirely online. And you can spend any amount of money on Facebook or on Google or on YouTube ads and nobody will know, because they're black boxes. And this is what happened. 

We've actually got no idea of the full extent of it. But we do know that in the last days before the Brexit vote, the official "Vote Leave" campaign laundered nearly three quarters of a million pounds through another campaign entity that our electoral commission has ruled was illegal, and it's referred it to the police. 

And with this illegal cash, "Vote Leave" unleashed a fire hose of disinformation. Ads like this. 

This is a lie, it's a total lie. Turkey is not joining the European Union. There's not even any discussions of it joining the European Union. And most of us, we never saw these ads, because we were not the target of them. "Vote Leave" identified a tiny sliver of people who it identified as persuadable, and they saw them. And the only reason we are seeing these now is because parliament forced Facebook to hand them over. 

And maybe you think, "Well, it was just a bit of overspending. It's a few lies." But this was the biggest electoral fraud in Britain for 100 years. In a once-in-a-generation vote that hinged upon just one percent of the electorate. And it was just one of the crimes that took place in the referendum. 

There was another group, which was headed by this man, Nigel Farage, the one to the right of Trump. And his group, "Leave.EU" -- it also broke the law. It broke British electoral laws and British data laws, and it's also being referred to the police. And this man, Arron Banks, he funded this campaign. And in a completely separate case, he's being referred to our National Crime Agency, our equivalent of the FBI, because our electoral commission has concluded they don't know where his money came from. Or if it was even British. And I'm not even going to go into the lies that Arron Banks has told about his covert relationship with the Russian government. Or the weird timing of Nigel Farage's meetings with Julian Assange and with Trump's buddy, Roger Stone, now indicted, immediately before two massive WikiLeaks dumps, both of which happened to benefit Donald Trump. But I will tell you that Brexit and Trump were intimately entwined. This man told me that Brexit was the petri dish for Trump. And we know it's the same people, the same companies, the same data, the same techniques, the same use of hate and fear. 

This is what they were posting on Facebook. And I don't even want to call this a lie, 

because it feels more like a hate crime to me. 

I don't have to tell you that hate and fear are being sown online all across the world. Not just in Britain and America, but in France and in Hungary and Brazil and Myanmar and New Zealand. And we know there is this dark undertow which is connecting us all globally. And it is flowing via the technology platforms. But we only see a tiny amount of what's going on on the surface. 

And I only found out anything about this dark underbelly because I started looking into Trump's relationship to Farage, into a company called Cambridge Analytica. And I spent months tracking down an ex-employee, Christopher Wiley. And he told me how this company, that worked for both Trump and Brexit, had profiled people politically in order to understand their individual fears, to better target them with Facebook ads. And it did this by illicitly harvesting the profiles of 87 million people from Facebook. It took an entire year's work to get Christopher on the record. And I had to turn myself from a feature writer into an investigative reporter to do it. And he was extraordinarily brave, because the company is owned by Robert Mercer, the billionaire who bankrolled Trump, and he threatened to sue us multiple times, to stop us from publishing. 

But we finally got there, and we were one day ahead of publication. We got another legal threat. Not from Cambridge Analytica this time, but from Facebook. It told us that if we publish, they would sue us. We did it anyway. 

Facebook, you were on the wrong side of history in that. And you were on the wrong side of history in this -- in refusing to give us the answers that we need. And that is why I am here. To address you directly, the gods of Silicon Valley. 

Mark Zuckerberg ... 

and Sheryl Sandberg and Larry Page and Sergey Brin and Jack Dorsey, and your employees and your investors, too. Because 100 years ago, the biggest danger in the South Wales coal mines was gas. Silent and deadly and invisible. It's why they sent the canaries down first to check the air. And in this massive, global, online experiment that we are all living through, we in Britain are the canary. We are what happens to a western democracy when a hundred years of electoral laws are disrupted by technology. 

Our democracy is broken, our laws don't work anymore, and it's not me saying this, it's our parliament published a report saying this. This technology that you have invented has been amazing. But now, it's a crime scene. And you have the evidence. And it is not enough to say that you will do better in the future. Because to have any hope of stopping this from happening again, we have to know the truth. 

And maybe you think, "Well, it was just a few ads. And people are smarter than that, right?" To which I would say, "Good luck with that." Because what the Brexit vote demonstrates is that liberal democracy is broken. And you broke it. This is not democracy -- spreading lies in darkness, paid for with illegal cash, from God knows where. It's subversion, and you are accessories to it. 

Our parliament has been the first in the world to try to hold you to account, and it's failed. You are literally beyond the reach of British law -- not just British laws, this is nine parliaments, nine countries are represented here, who Mark Zuckerberg refused to come and give evidence to. 

And what you don't seem to understand is that this is bigger than you. And it's bigger than any of us. And it is not about left or right or "Leave" or "Remain" or Trump or not. It's about whether it's actually possible to have a free and fair election ever again. Because as it stands, I don't think it is. 

And so my question to you is, is this what you want? Is this how you want history to remember you: as the handmaidens to authoritarianism that is on the rise all across the world? Because you set out to connect people. And you are refusing to acknowledge that the same technology is now driving us apart. 


  1. Listen to the video and answer all questions below  without reading the transcript /text of the video.
  2. Then read the transcript of the video and check your answers, before looking at the corrections.




  1. Why did Carole go to Ebbw Vale?
  2. True or false? Ebbw Vale was a wealthy town.
  3. What problems has the town faced?
  4. True or false? Carole was surprised by the high “leave” vote in the town.
  5. In what ways has the EU invested in this town?
  6. True or false? The town has had a big influx of refugees and immigrants in recent years.
  7. According to Carole, why was it not possible to find a trace of Brexit adds on Facebook?
  8. What negative effect has Brexit already had on South Wales?
  9. True or false? Mark zuckerburg has been cooperative in sharing information on the Brexit referendum with the British Parliament.
  10. True or false? According to Carole, Facebook tolerated criminal activity on its site during the referendum.
  11. How has Britain been able to stop electoral corruption since the 19th century?
  12. What is a negative consequence of online political campaigning?
  13. What was the “Vote Leave” campaign accused of?
  14. True or false? Turkey was going to join the EU.
  15. According to Carole, what do the countries Britain, America, France, Hungary, Brazil, Myanmar and New Zealand have in common?




  1. She went to write a report.
  2. It’s a working class town.
  3. The coal mines and steelworks closed
  4. True
  5. It has invested in a new trainline and station, a further education college, a sports centre and road improvement scheme.
  7. There’re no archives of adds. They disappear straight away.
  8. Japanese car manufacturers are leaving
  9. It has refused to give information.
  11. There are laws to limit the amount of money that you can spend in an election.
  12. People can be misinformed.
  13. They were accused of laundering ¾ million pounds though another illegal campaign.
  14. It was a lie
  15. Hate and fear are being spread online in these countries.






When reading about political events, it is important to understand the names of the participants or the nouns for some of the action that can be taken.


Here is the beginning of the wikipedia page about Brexit.

Some words have been removed. Without going to the page and using the deifinition, Can you put the correct word / words (a to e) in the correct blank (1 to 5)


Brexit (/ˈbrɛksɪt, ˈbrɛɡzɪt/; a portmanteau of "British exit") was the withdrawal of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU) at 23:00 GMT on 31 January 2020 (00:00 1 February CET). The UK is the first and only......(1)...... to have left the EU. The UK had been a member state of the EU and its predecessor the European Communities (EC) since 1 January 1973. Following Brexit, EU law and the Court of Justice of the European Union no longer have primacy over British laws, except in select areas in relation to Northern Ireland. The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 retains relevant EU law as domestic law, which the UK can now amend or repeal. Under the terms of the Brexit withdrawal agreement, Northern Ireland continues to participate in the European Single Market in relation to goods, and to be a de facto member of the EU Customs Union.

The EU and its institutions have developed gradually since their establishment and during the 47 years of British membership, and grew to be of significant economic and political importance to the UK. Throughout the period of British membership, Eurosceptic groups had existed, opposing aspects of the EU and its predecessors. Labour prime minister Harold Wilson's pro-EC government held a referendum on continued EC membership in 1975, in which 67.2 per cent of those voting chose to stay within the bloc, but no further referendums were held during the subsequent process of European integration, aimed at "ever closer union", embodied in the Treaties of Maastricht, Amsterdam, Nice and Lisbon. As part of a campaign pledge to win votes from ......(2).......,Conservative prime minister David Cameron promised to hold a referendum if his government was re-elected. His (pro-EU) government subsequently held a referendum on continued EU membership in 2016, in which voters chose to leave the EU with 51.9 per cent of the vote share. This led to his .... (3)..... , his replacement by Theresa May, and four years of negotiations with the EU on the terms of departure and on future relations, completed under a Boris Johnson government, with government control remaining with the Conservative Party in this period.

The negotiation process was both politically challenging and deeply divisive within the UK, leading to two......(4) ....... One deal was rejected by the British parliament, causing great uncertainty and leading to postponement of the withdrawal date to avoid a no-deal Brexit. The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020 after a withdrawal deal was passed by Parliament but continued to participate in many EU institutions (including the single market and customs union) during a one-year transition period in order to ensure frictionless trade until all details of the post-Brexit relationship were agreed and implemented............(5)........ negotiations continued within days of the scheduled end of the transition period and the EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement was signed on 30 December 2020.

The effects of Brexit will in part be determined by the cooperation agreement, which provisionally applied from 1 January 2021, and formally came into force on 1 May 2021. The broad consensus among economists is that it is likely to harm the UK's economy and reduce its real per capita income in the long term, and that the referendum itself damaged the economy. It is likely to produce a large decline in immigration from countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) to the UK, and poses challenges for British higher education and academic research.



a) Eurosceptics.................. people who don't believe / trust the E.U

b) snap elections ............... an election earlier than previously scheduled

c) Trade deal ...................... an agreement between two or more countries about for exemple import and export taxes

d) resignation ................... quit a (usually politcal) job

e) sovereign country ........ coutry that isn't controlled by any organisation








1 e, 2 a, 3 d, 4 b, 5 c



Traduire les phrases suivantes en anglais, issues du texte de comprehension orale, puis retrouver ces phrases dans paragraphs 4 a 7 du texte en anglais:

1. Il disait qu'ils voulaitent reprendre le control de leur pays, qui a été un des slogans de la campagne Brexit. Et ils m'ont expliqué qu'ils avaient marre des immigrés et des refugiés. 

2. Quand j'ai verifié les chiffres, je me suis rendu compte que Ebbw Vale avait un des taux les plus bas de immigration dans le pays. 

3. Cet referedum a eu lieu dans l'obscurité car il s'est passé sur Facebook.Et ce que se passe sur Facebook reste sur Facebook. 





The future perfect – with “will”

Here's the positive form (it's just 'will' + infinitive):

  • I will meet him later (I'll ..)
  • You will come (you'll..)
  • It will rain tomorrow (It’ll …)

The short form: 'll is very, very common, and is almost always used when speaking. It's really much more natural to say 'I'll' instead of 'I will'. 

Next, here's the negative form (just add 'not' - remember will not = won't):

  • I will not go (I won't ..)
  • You will not be late (you won't ..)
  • It will not snow tomorrow (it won't..)

Finally, here's the question:

'yes / no' questions:

  • Will I go?
  • Will you come early?

'wh' questions:

  • Where will I go?
  • Why will you come early?

The difference between “will” and “going to + infinitive”:


“going to + infinitive”

A decision at the moment of speaking:

Julie: There's no milk.
John: Really? In that case, I'll go and get some.

A decision before the moment of speaking:

Julie: There's no milk.
John: I know. I'm going to go and get some when this TV programme finishes.

A prediction based on opinion:

I think the Conservatives will win the next election.

A future plan:

Julie: I’m going to Greece next week.

John: really? I’m not going away. I’m going to stay at home and rest!

A future fact:

The sun will rise tomorrow.


For promises / requests / refusals / offers:

I'll help you tomorrow, if you like.




Practice 1: choose the correct form of 'will' 

1. ____________________ (they / come) tomorrow?

2. When ____________________ (you / get) back?

3. If you lose your job, what ____________________ (you / do)?

 4. In your opinion, ____________________ (she / be) a good teacher?

 5. What time ____________________ (the sun / set) today?

 6. ____________________ (she / get) the job, do you think?

7. ____________________ (David / be) at home this evening?

8. What ____________________ (the weather / be) like tomorrow?

9. There’s someone at the door, ____________________ (you / get) it?

10. How ____________________ (he / get) here?


Practice 2:Choose “will” or “be going to” for each space.

1. A: We don’t have any bread.

B: I know. I __________________ get some from the shop.

2. A: We don’t have any bread.

B: Really? I __________________ get some from the shop then.

3. A: Why do you need to borrow my suitcase?

B: I __________________ visit my mother in Scotland next month.

4. A: I’m really cold. #

B: I __________________ turn the heating on.

5. A: Are you going to John’s party tonight?

B: Yes. Are you going too? I __________________ give you a lift

6. A: What are your plans after you leave university?

B: I __________________ work in a hospital in Africa. I leave on the 28th.

7. (The phone rings) A: I __________________ get it!

8. A: Are you ready to order?

    B: I can’t decide … Okay, I __________________ have the steak, please.

9. A: Are you busy tonight? Would you like to have coffee?

     B: Sorry. I __________________ go to the library. I’ve been planning to study all day.

10. A: Why are you carrying a hammer?

      B: I __________________ put up some pictures.



Practice 1 answers:

1. Will they come tomorrow?

2. When will you get back?

3. If you lose your job, what will you do?

4. In your opinion, will she be a good teacher?

5. What time will the sun set today?

6. Will she get the job, do you think?

7. Will David be at home this evening?

8. What will the weather be like tomorrow?

9. There’s someone at the door, will you get it?

10. How will he get here?


Practice 2 answers:

  • I’m going to
  • I’ll
  • I’m going to
  • I’ll
  • I’ll
  • I’m going to
  • I’ll
  • I’ll
  • I’m going to
  • I’m going to





To outline : souligner, mettre en évidence

Supplies : approvisionnements

Injury : une blessure

Sting : une piqûre

Spell : un sort

To be pregnant : tomber enceinte

Politely : gentiment

Record : un registre

To oversee : surveiller

Thin : maigre

To beg : supplier

Advice : conseil



Peseshet is a doctor and a teacher. The video describes a typical day of her life.

Now it is you turn. Write a text :

- Present yourself.

- Describe your profession.

- Tell what you did to get this job.

- Describe a typical day of your life : what usually happens when you are at work?




You can book a one to one class with a teacher who will correct your writing exercise.  One to one classes can be online, with a video call, anytime of the day. 

This gives you full flexibility for your timetable.

Please send us an email at afterschool at afterschoollyon.com.




You can book a one to one class with a teacher for the speaking.  One to one classes can be online, with a video call, anytime of the day. 

This gives you full flexibility for your timetable.

Please send us an email at afterschool at afterschoollyon.com.

Our online classes range from A1 to C2 levels, including specific class contents and online video classes.  They are designed to improve communication of spoken and written English with learner-centred lessons which help build students’ confidence, accuracy and fluency.

Our online learning classes offer an extensive level of flexibility for individual students, with comprehensive syllabus and content.