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posted by azrael on Friday July 18 2014, @11:21PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the follow-us-on-twitter-and-RT-everything dept.

"Containment control" model looks at how groups of influencers can manipulate people. The same math that researchers use to control swarms of drones can be used, in theory, to control you on social media.

Facebook isn't the only organization conducting research into how attitudes are affected by social media. The Department of Defense has invested millions of dollars over the past few years investigating social media, social networks, and how information spreads across them. While Facebook and Cornell University researchers manipulated what individuals saw in their social media streams, military-funded research-including projects funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Social Media in Strategic Communications (SMISC) program-has looked primarily into how messages from influential members of social networks propagate.

One study, funded by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), has gone a step further. "A less investigated problem is once you've identified the network, how do you manipulate it toward an end," said Warren Dixon, a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering and director of the University of Florida's Nonlinear Controls and Robotics research group. Dixon was the principal investigator on an Air Force Research Laboratory-funded project, which published its findings in February in a paper entitled "Containment Control for a Social Network with State-Dependent Connectivity." [PDF]

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 18 2014, @11:48PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 18 2014, @11:48PM (#71048)

    What?

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by nyder on Friday July 18 2014, @11:57PM

    by nyder (4525) on Friday July 18 2014, @11:57PM (#71053)

    If you are doing right, you don't need to control people. It's when you are doing stuff you know people won't approve, that you would need to control how they think, how they respond.

    Funny how all these "Good" governments are involved in stuff where they want to hide it from the public view, or influence the publics view on what they are doing, because of course, the public isn't cool with it.

    Our governments know they are doing wrong stuff, thus the need to hide or confuse people.

  • (Score: 0, Flamebait) by Adamsjas on Saturday July 19 2014, @12:31AM

    by Adamsjas (4507) on Saturday July 19 2014, @12:31AM (#71063)

    Just fly the planes boys and girls.

    Maybe stop raping your female "airmen", keep everything clean and tidey and airworth.
    Its all we ask...

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by captain normal on Saturday July 19 2014, @07:02AM

    by captain normal (2205) on Saturday July 19 2014, @07:02AM (#71146)

    There's that term "influencers" again. That was in another story a few weeks ago. I think that was about the NSA doing something similar. These guys are only about 60 years behind Madison Ave ad agencies.

    --
    “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Max Hyre on Saturday July 19 2014, @04:10PM

    by Max Hyre (3427) <{maxhyre} {at} {yahoo.com}> on Saturday July 19 2014, @04:10PM (#71254)
    And they don't even need to use it. When people think the gov't is trying even more underhanded ways to manipulate them, via social networks, they'll put trust in a smaller and smaller group---those they feel they personally know fairly well, and like. Given such a withdrawal of trust, the electorate will not merely polarize (two incompatible groups), but actually splinter into many, many little cliques.

    Anybody want to speculate where that leaves us?

    • (Score: 2) by HiThere on Saturday July 19 2014, @06:53PM

      by HiThere (866) on Saturday July 19 2014, @06:53PM (#71276) Journal

      The Romans called it "Divide and Conqueror".

      --
      Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
    • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Sunday July 20 2014, @03:02PM

      by Phoenix666 (552) on Sunday July 20 2014, @03:02PM (#71514) Journal

      Anybody want to speculate where that leaves us?

      Yes. The Second American Revolution (and similarly titled revolutions around the world).

      --
      Washington DC delenda est.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by JNCF on Saturday July 19 2014, @08:40PM

    by JNCF (4317) on Saturday July 19 2014, @08:40PM (#71296) Journal

    We already know that the US military industrial-complex operates sock puppets on social networks to enfluence public opinion around the world, [theguardian.com] though they officially maintain that they don't do it in English. You know how that goes. The CIA even started their own social network [ap.org] in Cuba with the intent of overthrowing their government.