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posted by Fnord666 on Wednesday October 02 2019, @02:13PM   Printer-friendly
from the believe-it-or-not dept.

Submitted via IRC for SoyCow1337

More and more countries are mounting disinformation campaigns online

[...] That's a long way of saying that I forgive you if you'd like to skip today's news and instead just read nothing but explainers and Twitter threads about impeachment. It's kind of the biggest story in the world right now, and it will all play out in new and exciting and probably terrifying ways across all our big social platforms, and if you want to read some speculation on how I'd point you to this savvy Kevin Roose piece on the subject (further excerpted below).

But say you've finished your impeachment reading for the day and are eager to luxuriate in a good old-fashioned tale of platform-based information warfare. In that case may I please recommend a new report from researchers at Oxford University on the usage of disinformation campaigns by governments around the world. And usage is ... well, I bet you can guess!

Here's Davey Alba and Adam Satariano in the New York Times:

The researchers compiled information from news organizations, civil society groups and governments to create one of the most comprehensive inventories of disinformation practices by governments around the world. They found that the number of countries with political disinformation campaigns more than doubled to 70 in the last two years, with evidence of at least one political party or government entity in each of those countries engaging in social media manipulation.

In addition, Facebook remains the No. 1 social network for disinformation, the report said. Organized propaganda campaigns were found on the platform in 56 countries.

You can read the report yourself here. Personally I found it useful to just read a straightforward guide to the varieties of state-sponsored information attacks — most of which have long been in use, of course, by more garden-variety trolls.


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  • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Thursday October 03 2019, @03:03PM

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Thursday October 03 2019, @03:03PM (#902293)

    That makes it next to impossible for the press and the government to control perceptions

    See: Great Firewall of China, US Senate proposals above, more to come...

    Not to mention: Cambridge Analytica - money talks, pump a few million a day into Facebook and you can swing major elections.

    that people will be compelled to do their own primary research

    They're teaching primary sources in my kids' high school history class, I even heard a family in the county public library talking with the Librarian about how to get primary sources for the assignment... however, I'm afraid the topic really will go over with the kids like a lead balloon.

    the "journalists" chucked out the window a long time ago.

    There's the saddest bit of futurecasting of all... the real journalists still do it the right way, and I'm guessing that the Pulitzer is still awarded to examples of real journalism. What has happened in the real world is that the masses have turned their attention away from the (mostly bought, paid for, tagged, gagged and state/oligarchy controlled) mainstream, sometimes real, journalists and started listening to and virally blowing up blogger stories. The early results I have seen from this aren't any improvement or distinguishing of MSM, but rather a stooping to the level of the bloggers for various reasons... none of them good.

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