UW professor: The information war is real, and we’re losing it. A University of Washington professor started studying social networks to help people respond to disasters.
But she got dragged down a rabbit hole of twitter-boosted conspiracy theories, and ended up mapping our political moment. It started with the Boston marathon bombing, four years ago. University of Washington professor Kate Starbird was sifting through thousands of tweets sent in the aftermath and noticed something strange. Too strange for a university professor to take seriously. FBI-led investigative team examines role of conservative news sites in Russia campaign. Federal investigators are examining whether far-right news sites played any role last year in a Russian cyber operation that dramatically widened the reach of news stories — some fictional — that favored Donald Trump’s presidential bid, two people familiar with the inquiry say.
Operatives for Russia appear to have strategically timed the computer commands, known as “bots,” to blitz social media with links to the pro-Trump stories at times when the billionaire businessman was on the defensive in his race against Democrat Hillary Clinton, these sources said. The bots’ end products were largely millions of Twitter and Facebook posts carrying links to stories on conservative internet sites such as Breitbart News and InfoWars, as well as on the Kremlin-backed RT News and Sputnik News, the sources said. Investigators examining the bot attacks are exploring whether the far-right news operations took any actions to assist Russia’s operatives.
Report Confirms Fox News’ Napolitano Repeated Russian Media For His British Intelligence Conspiracy Theory. The New York Times has confirmed that Fox News legal analyst Andrew Napolitano sourced his false allegation that former President Barack Obama asked British intelligence to spy on President Donald Trump to a discredited former CIA analyst.
This analyst, Larry C. Johnson, floated the conspiracy theory on the Russian state-sponsored news network RT on March 6, the week after Trump’s original accusation that Obama was responsible for an illegal wiretap. On March 13, Napolitano told hosts of Fox News’ Fox & Friends that Obama circumvented the American intelligence community to ask “the British spying agency” for “transcripts of conversations involving candidate Trump” without “American fingerprints.” Napolitano’s claims were cited by White House press secretary Sean Spicer while defending Trump’s baseless claims that Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the 2016 presidential election. How Facebook, fake news and friends are warping your memory. Clockwise from top left: G.
Tomasevic/Reuters; A. Hussein/Getty; D. Berehulak/NYT/Redux/eyevine; Rolls Press/Popperfoto/Getty; J. Bernie Sanders' Campaign Faced A Fake News Tsunami. Where Did It Come From? The Domestic Conspiracy That Gave Trump The Election Is In Plain Sight. Fake news is 'killing people's minds', says Apple boss Tim Cook. Fake news is “killing people’s minds”, Tim Cook, the head of Apple, has said.
The technology boss said firms such as his own needed to create tools that would help stem the spread of falsehoods, without impinging on freedom of speech. Cook also called for governments to lead information campaigns to crack down on fake news in an interview with a British national newspaper. The scourge of falsehoods in mainstream political discourse came to the fore during recent campaigns, during which supporters of each side were accused of promoting misinformation for political gain. Spicer Attacks CNN's Multi-Sourced Corroboration Of Dossier On Trump-Russia Ties As "Fake News" A CNN report that multiple US intelligence and law enforcement officials had independently corroborated “some” of the details in the dossier on President Trump’s connections to Russia was dismissed by White House press secretary Sean Spicer as “fake news” who then insisted CNN instead cover good news for the administration.
The White House has repeatedly used fake news to support their political agenda, in addition to his family and campaign surrogates’ documented consumption of fake news. The Trump White House has repeatedly attacked unfavorable news coverage and news outlets, especially CNN, as “fake news;” the president even insisted that “any negative polls are fake news.” Trump’s team has also threatened CNN reporters for doing their jobs and previously banned members of the administration from appearing on the network. The administration’s response to unfavorable coverage seems to be to attack it as “fake news,” echoing misuse of the term in conservative media. Trump Says Media Fail To Report Terrorist Attacks; White House Promises List. President Trump, in another broadside against the news media, on Monday accused "the dishonest press" of failing to report terrorist attacks.
Speaking to troops at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida, the headquarters of the U.S. Central Command, Trump cited a series of recent attacks and then added, "It's gotten to a point where it's not even reported, and in many cases the very, very dishonest press doesn't even want to report it. " Trump told the troops that the media "have their reasons, and you understand that. " The White House via YouTube Trump cited no examples of the media's failure to report terrorist attacks. The White House Is Using A Fake News Lie To Baselessly Discredit Anti-Trump Protests. Press Secretary Sean Spicer Tells Fox & Friends That Anti-Trump Protesters Are Paid Spicer Tells Fox News That Protesting Has Become “A Very Paid Astroturf-Type Movement.”
White House press secretary Sean Spicer told Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade that he “absolutely” believed that people were being paid to protest the Trump administration’s various policies. BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): Do you sense, instead of being organic disruption, do you sense that there is an organized pushback and people are being paid to protest? SEAN SPICER: Oh, absolutely. The complete list of all 33 false things Donald Trump has said as president so far.
President Donald Trump makes frequent false claims about matters big and small. The Star is planning to track them all. U.S. Uncut. Are Trump Supporters Too Dumb To Know They’re Dumb? Science Says “Probably” How the hell can anybody call themselves intelligent when they’re supporting Donald Trump?
It’s a question that baffles people who are able to think critically, able to read and comprehend both history and current events, and able to see through Trump’s thin façade of know-it-all-ism and deep into what he is – an ignorant, narcissistic, and dangerous conman. Trump supporters not only don’t see this, they’re happy that there’s someone running for president that thinks exactly like them. Take Melanie Austin, of Brownsville, Pennsylvania. She thought her beliefs about Obama being a gay Muslim from Kenya and Michelle being transgender were just fringe beliefs – right up until she started hearing similar stuff from Trump and other right-wing extremists.
The Psychological Quirk That Explains Why You Love Donald Trump. Many commentators have argued that Donald Trump’s dominance in the GOP presidential race can be largely explained by ignorance; his candidacy, after all, is most popular among Republican voters without college degrees. Their expertise about current affairs is too fractured and full of holes to spot that only 9 percent of Trump’s statements are “true” or “mostly” true, according to PolitiFact, whereas 57 percent are “false” or “mostly false”—the remainder being “pants on fire” untruths. Trump himself has memorably declared: “I love the poorly educated.” But as a psychologist who has studied human behavior—including voter behavior—for decades, I think there is something deeper going on. Google Quietly Removes “Fake News” Language From Its Advertising Policy. Google has removed language referencing fake news from its “prohibited content” policy for websites that use its advertising network. The policy previously stated that these sites cannot engage in “deceptively presenting fake news articles as real.”
As of January 10, at least 20 of the 24 fake news-purveying websites flagged by Media Matters in December were still using Google’s advertising network, Google AdSense, despite Google’s November 14 announcement that it would restrict websites from using the network if they feature misrepresentative content. Websites Peddling Fake News Still Using Google Ads Nearly A Month After Google Announced Ban. Google Bans Websites Peddling Fake News From Using Its Advertising Service Nov. 14: Google Bans “Websites That Peddle Fake News From Using Its Online Advertising Service.” According to The New York Times, on November 14, Google announced it would ban fake news websites from using its online advertising service in order to cut off their revenue sources. The ban was said to take effect “imminently”: Google AdSense “Prohibited Content” Policies Now Specifically Single Out “Deceptively Presenting Fake News Articles As Real.”
Google’s support page explaining its official policies about what types of pages cannot host Google AdSense advertising further explains the new policy banning “misrepresentative content” (original emphasis): Psychological 'vaccine' could help immunize public against 'fake news' on climate change. In medicine, vaccinating against a virus involves exposing a body to a weakened version of the threat, enough to build a tolerance. Social psychologists believe that a similar logic can be applied to help "inoculate" the public against misinformation, including the damaging influence of 'fake news' websites propagating myths about climate change.
A new study compared reactions to a well-known climate change fact with those to a popular misinformation campaign. When presented consecutively, the false material completely cancelled out the accurate statement in people's minds - opinions ended up back where they started. Researchers then added a small dose of misinformation to delivery of the climate change fact, by briefly introducing people to distortion tactics used by certain groups.
This "inoculation" helped shift and hold opinions closer to the truth - despite the follow-up exposure to 'fake news'. Worst of the worst: 12 moments of right-wing horror and absurdity from 2016. President-elect Donald Trump had the most perfect New Year’s tweet. And by “perfect” we mean perfectly awful. Say what you will, the man has an uncanny ability to compress his entire sick personality into a mere 140 characters. “Happy New Year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do. Love!” He tweeted.