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How Russian Bots and Trolls Invade Our Lives — and Elections

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It would be interesting to set up a fake FB account with a right leaning personality, subscribe to the newsfeed and see what you reeled in.

A relative recently posted a false story about the flight crew of the New Orleans Saints "taking a knee" and then departing the plane leaving the team stranded out of town. This never happened but the post was complete with a photo of the team plane etc. I quickly debunked it by going to Snopes, posted the Snopes link and just saying the story was not true. My relative said she couldn't read the article from Snopes on her phone but would check later. I doubt she ever did.

I am keeping an eye out for other such posts aimed at creating divisions among different groups but really don't usually get that sort of stuff on my FB feed. I am not good at FB, find it complicated, confusing and constantly in a state of flux re how it works.

The bots are a real problem. In an attempt to avoid legal constraints the social media people are talking about self regulation. duh. Where were they last summer?!


https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/2017/10/31/247293/social-media-companies-to-testify-before-congress-about-russian-propaganda/

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Making it worse is FOX News helping to pass this stuff on. I've seen 'em reporting Russian-bot-produced drivel as though it was actual news.

There's also a huge movement of alt-right people trying to pose as "antifa" to smear 'em. One group recently made a big sign condemning Nazis and "people who are against pedophiles" to make it look like antifa is pro-pedophile... which is ridiculous, but since a lot of Trump supporters are idiots who are so eager to believe any bad thing about their adversaries and are completely uncritical, that junk still gets passed around. They don't really care if it's true or not, just as long as somebody will believe it.

And, a lot of people do. You can see that by some of the debunked crap the righties on this very forum pass along. You can set 'em straight about it but you're still gonna hear shit about "Mexican gunrunning," etc. They flat-out don't care about the facts... and that's dangerous, because it plays right into Russian hands. Our country's stuck with a big population of willing dupes, and I'm not sure what can be done about it... but I know it can't sustain 'em for much longer. People are going to have to decide pretty soon if "pissing off the libtards" is worth destroying democracy.

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zsomething wrote:Making it worse is FOX News helping to pass this stuff on.  I've seen 'em reporting Russian-bot-produced drivel as though it was actual news.

There's also a huge movement of alt-right people trying to pose as "antifa" to smear 'em.  One group recently made a big sign condemning Nazis and "people who are against pedophiles" to make it look like antifa is pro-pedophile... which is ridiculous, but since a lot of Trump supporters are idiots who are so eager to believe any bad thing about their adversaries and are completely uncritical, that junk still gets passed around.  They don't really care if it's true or not, just as long as somebody will believe it.

And, a lot of people do.  You can see that by some of the debunked crap the righties on this very forum pass along.  You can set 'em straight about it but you're still gonna hear shit about "Mexican gunrunning," etc.  They flat-out don't care about the facts... and that's dangerous, because it plays right into Russian hands.   Our country's stuck with a big population of willing dupes, and I'm not sure what can be done about it... but I know it can't sustain 'em for much longer.  People are going to have to decide pretty soon if "pissing off the libtards" is worth destroying democracy.

How mind-boggling ironic is it that the GOP, once hyping the Red threat to the point of a Commie under every bed are now in that bed with a former Democrat who invites Russians into the Oval Office and fires Comey while "thinking about the Russia thing"?

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Russian-linked accounts bought thousands of Facebook ads on hot-button U.S. issues ranging from Black Lives Matter to illegal immigration, according to a batch of the ads released Wednesday by members of the House of Representatives intelligence panel.

See a sampling of the ads here: http://politi.co/2xKdANN

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It's simply mind boggling to think and now know citizens are exposed to these techniques to sway opinion(s) and attitudes, clearly we will never again have a feeling of security regarding elections. If I understand it correctly FB announced that over 120,000,000 views to these planted images or stories followed by the unleashing of thousands of computer generated bots giving 'likes" which gave the false impression the image/story was legitimate.
It's a new ballgame which is an obvious understatement but I really think that Trump was elected as a result of these techniques. Not sour grapes but he won by a mere 80,000 votes across three states which seems very doable!

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Just a comment here that Mark Zuckerberg sent his lawyer to respond to Congressional questions but has the time to meet personally with the Russian President a few years ago. It seems highly unlikely that there won't be more scrutiny of this (how surprising!! We had no idea!!) Russia/Facebook connection.



https://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/oct/01/facebook-mark-zuckerberg-russia-prime-minister

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