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Because we have to pare down decisions daily, which media we believe: Government-controlled 'keyboard' armies now a global phenomenon,
By SABRA AYRES
NOV 13, 2017 |9:05 PM
By now, the world is well aware of how Russia used armies of bots and online commentary to manipulate information on social media and spread disinformation during the United States' 2016 presidential campaign.
Less well known is how those methods have spread internationally, with dozens of countries, including the Philippines, Turkey and Sudan, using social media to suppress dissenting voices and promote an anti-democratic agenda.
Inspired by Russia’s pioneering work, authoritarian countries have turned to “fake news” and Twitter bots to create disinformation campaigns that undermine their internal enemies. The spread of such techniques was chronicled in a report released Tuesday by Freedom House, a Washington-based nonprofit that advocates for freedom and democracy.
Out of 65 countries surveyed for the report from June 2016 to May, 30 countries were using methods of information manipulation and disinformation largely developed and tested by Russia and China during the last decade, according to the report. At least 18 countries' elections, including the 2016 presidential campaign in the U.S., were affected by the manipulations during the report's research period.