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Thread: Trolls with a taste for misinformation roil waters on Election Day

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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Trolls with a taste for misinformation roil waters on Election Day

    Trolls with a taste for misinformation roil waters on Election Day

    November 06, 2018 09:38 AM
    Updated 30 minutes ago

    WASHINGTON Anti-democratic voices on social media Tuesday sought to trick Americans from voting on election day, despite warnings from the federal government of active campaigns by Russia and other nations to disrupt the elections.

    A handful of Twitter accounts, some of them with more than 10,000 followers, told the citizenry to vote Wednesday, not Tuesday, in a tactic to give blatant false information.

    “A reminder for all my liberal friends, don’t forget to vote tomorrow Wednesday November 7th!” said one tweet.

    David Ommen@DavidNemmo

    A reminder for all my liberal friends, don't forget to vote tomorrow Wednesday November 7th!

    6:44 AM - Nov 6, 2018

    Another tweet came from an account opened only days ago and directed at Texans, who were deciding Tuesday whether to re-elect Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican, or turn toward Democrat U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke.

    “Please go vote BETO TOMORROW, Wed Nov 7th,” said the account registered under the name @KentGreenJr.

    Please go vote BETO TOMORROW, Wed Nov 7th

    — Kent Green, Jr (@KentGreenJr) November 6, 2018

    Whether those posting the disinformation were real people thinking they were engaged only in partisan mischief or active influence campaigns by foreigners seeking to weaken the U.S. electoral system could not be immediately determined.

    But federal authorities were clearly concerned about foreign interference efforts.

    Facebook late Monday said it had received a tip from federal law enforcement and responded by taking down 85 Instagram accounts and 30 Facebook accounts. The Instagram accounts were mostly in English, while the Facebook accounts were in French or Russian, the company said.

    The company said the concern was that the accounts were linked in “coordinated inauthentic behavior” and was investigating them in greater detail.

    “Once we know more — including whether these accounts are linked to the Russia-based Internet Research Agency or other foreign entities — we will update this post,” the company said.

    Federal prosecutors in February handed down indictments against 13 Russians, many of whom worked at the Internet Research Agency, a “troll farm,” or Russian information warfare operation designed to spread distrust among American voters about the democratic system itself.

    In a joint statement released Monday night, the heads of the FBI, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the Departments of Homeland Security and Justice said they had not detected any successful efforts to disrupt the elections but that people should be on guard.

    “Americans should be aware that foreign actors — and Russia in particular — continue to try to influence public sentiment and voter perceptions through actions intended to sow discord,” the statement said. “They can do this by spreading false information about political processes and candidates, lying about their own interference activities, disseminating propaganda on social media, and through other tactics.”

    Common Cause
    , the nonpartisan citizen’s lobby, which was keeping a tally of disinformation on social media, said it was unable to tell immediately the genesis of the misleading Twitter posts.

    Several accounts with big followings, including @wink_nod and @USSANews, were tweeting or retweeting suggestions that voters should vote Wednesday. Some of the tweets were targeted at Republicans.

    Rev. Leviathan@Vanilla_Grrilla

    Breaking news: In order to ease the voting process, all Republicans vote tomorrow, Nov 7. Thank you! #ElectionDay

    5:12 AM - Nov 6, 2018 · Huntington, IN

    Recorded Future, a cybersecurity firm with headquarters in Somerville, Massachusetts, said it had detected that Russian influence operations had shifted strategy before the U.S. midterm elections, moving away from “verifiably false information to “hyperpartisan perspectives.”

    “We have seen tactics shift over the past two weeks to appear more real and legitimate,” Priscilla Moriuchi, director of strategic threat development at the company, wrote in a note.

    Moriuchi said postings generated through Russian campaigns were now focused on “extremely biased or opinionated content.”

    She said Russian “trolls,” or provocateurs, were likely stoking sentiments on both ends of the U.S. political spectrum “but that the network we currently have identified is targeting the far right of American political discourse.”

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  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    When are they are going to stop the trolls that call Trump a racist and white nationalist?
    Beezer likes this.
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