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(15,923 posts)
Mon Sep 23, 2019, 09:02 AM Sep 2019

There's another expert player warming up to online election interference. We should worry.

COUNTRIES AROUND the world are worrying, rightly, about Russian interference in their elections. But there’s another player in the game with a lot of experience, and it isn’t sitting this one out.

China began dabbling in Internet disinformation long before “Russian troll” became part of the American vernacular. Its so-called 50-cent army, as many as 2 million strong according to some estimates, started marching in 2004: sneaking state-sponsored narratives into organic conversations, or just distracting citizens from controversial subjects, and pretending the 448 million comments it generates a year come from ordinary people.

These manipulation attempts have historically been mostly inward-facing, while efforts to sway foreigners have focused instead on overt propaganda disseminated through 3,000 public television channels, 2,500 radio stations, 12,000 newspapers and magazines, and more than 3 million websites. But recent activity suggests that Beijing has turned its attention outward — most aggressively, not so far from home.

The Stanford Internet Observatory has identified the upcoming Taiwanese presidential election as a near-certain target for a Chinese influence campaign. Journalists discovered this summer that an upset mayoral victory in 2018 by a pro-Beijing politician in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan’s largest city, was not the story it had seemed of charisma and digital know-how propelling a populist to victory. Instead, a mainland campaign had used sockpuppet accounts to gin up support, a tactic in line with researchers’ findings of cross-strait operations in recent elections. Now, a presidential contest approaches, and all signs point to more of the same, or worse.


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There's another expert player warming up to online election interference. We should worry. (Original Post) Zorro Sep 2019 OP
Perception Management Firestorm49 Sep 2019 #1
disconnect all voting devices from the internet nt msongs Sep 2019 #2


(4,093 posts)
1. Perception Management
Mon Sep 23, 2019, 10:06 AM
Sep 2019

Making the world believe what you want it to believe. You make up the “truth” and then bury the actual facts under so much garbage that people grow weary of trying to dig through it and instead just accept what was offered. Synopsis by author David Baldacci.

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