AN IRISH reporter in America has gone viral worldwide for his stunning report from the ground on Washington DC yesterday.
Donie O'Sullivan, from Caherciveen in County Kerry, was reporting live from the riots on the grounds of the Capitol yesterday as Trump supporters stormed the building in an attempt to overturn the US election results.
Surrounded by hundreds of protesters, who, egged on by the President, had swarmed the building and put pause to the confirmation of Joe Biden, O'Sullivan condemned Facebook for its lack of action in allowing conspiracy theories to flood the site.
Speaking live, O'Sullivan said "In 2016 people tried to write off anything about social media, saying oh, it's only a few Facebook posts, what harm?
"Here's the harm," he said, gesturing to the chaos of hundreds who had gathered in the belief that the election was rigged.
"The harm of conspiracy theories, the harm of people living in these online and Trump media echo chambers, where they are so deluded they can't get to grips with reality and understand that Joe Biden will soon be president."
.@donie, reporting from Capitol Hill: "In 2016 people tried to write off anything about social media, saying oh, it's only a few Facebook posts, what harm? Here's the harm. The harm of conspiracy theories, the harm of people living in these online and Trump media echo chambers." pic.twitter.com/kisSUSNRxb
— Tara Mulholland (@tara_mulholland) January 6, 2021
His words, as well as his stunning reporting amidst all the chaos, led to people around the world-- particularly his native Ireland-- showering him with praise.
Prominent Virgin Media News reporter Richard Chambers said the "real brilliance" of the Irish reporter was "the work he’s put in to investigating online misinformation and radicalising for years. As he says here, that led to what we saw last night.
"He was *exactly* the right person to be there."
Belfast journalist Leona O'Neill said it was "great to see the big love for the legend that is [Donie O'Sullivan] ...after his brilliant reporting from Washington for [CNN] last night," adding "Brilliant job".
Irish people while watching @CNN and having @donie pop up reporting on the riots. #donie pic.twitter.com/t9C5EobXmi
— Laura Stokes (@LauraKStokes) January 6, 2021
Donie's sister, Sinéad O'Sullivan also took to Twitter where she said "Well, everyone seems to know my big brother now.
"So proud of you Donie. Up Kerry!"
There’s @donie now, stifling the urge to shout ‘Kerry For Sam’ to a global audience pic.twitter.com/w0XZTPfEyn
— Gavan Reilly (@gavreilly) January 6, 2021
And CNN Chief National Correspondent John King, who became a household name in Ireland for his work explaining US election results, responded to the news that "The love affair is over... Ireland is now in love with [Donie]" by saying "Sad... but Donie is awesome."
#sad ☘️ but @donie is awesome. https://t.co/7hO5LbmjFt
— John King (@JohnKingCNN) January 6, 2021
Others joked that the reason Donie was keeping his cool amongst the chaos of the Capitol was because he was used to the chaos of an Irish nightclub at closing time...
All the other CNN correspondents can’t believe this stuff and are freaking out but Donie O’Sullivan is strolling around like he’s seen far worse coming out of a Carlow nightclub #donie
— Declan Lawn (@DecLawn) January 6, 2021
..while more said that as a man "rared on batter burgers and black pudding" he was confident among the protesters as he knows "full well he could knock out at least 3 of them before he's overpowered."
CNN's Donie O'Sullivan strolling thru the rioters with the confidence of a man rared on batter burgers and black pudding knowing full well he could knock out at least 3 of them before he's overpowered
— Minister for Spuds at the Dept of Bacon & Cabbage (@FCTwenteBenson) January 6, 2021
The Kerry native took to Twitter to thank everyone for their support, writing that he was "Overwhelmed by all the love from Ireland tonight", adding "So touched by all the nice messages from home."