The Guardian: Facebook and Twitter are being used to manipulate public opinion – report. “Propaganda on social media is being used to manipulate public opinion around the world, a new set of studies from the University of Oxford has revealed. From Russia, where around 45% of highly active Twitter accounts are bots, to Taiwan, where a campaign against President Tsai Ing-wen involved thousands of heavily co-ordinated – but not fully automated – accounts sharing Chinese mainland propaganda, the studies show that social media is an international battleground for dirty politics.”
Daily Nation (Kenya): Did Uhuru spread social media propaganda about Kalonzo?. “This week, President Uhuru Kenyatta appeared to have fallen for misinformation or deliberately deployed it in his campaigns. When fake news is picked up by someone with as much reach and a large audience as the Head of State has, it benefits from his stamp of credibility.”
Motherboard: How to Track What Congress Is Doing on the Internet. “There’s now a way to track what government employees, including elected officials, are doing online during working hours. A new plugin created by a software engineer in North Carolina lets website administrators monitor when someone accesses their site from an IP address associated with the federal government.”
New York Daily News: The billionaire GOP patron behind Trump’s social media bot army. “A GOP donor who once had ties to IBM is the man behind the millions of Twitter bots President Trump counts on as followers who could be employed to target voters with misleading or fake news on social media. In order for it to work, the scheme relies on the quiet guidance of Robert Mercer, a reclusive Republican mega-donor and staunch Trump supporter, sources told the Daily News.”
The Next Web: New Facebook tools allow politicians to keep better tabs on constituents. “Facebook is rolling out a new tool for politicians to feel more connected with those they were elected to represent. In the coming weeks, the company will start sharing article data based on what an elected official’s constituents are reading and sharing. Facebook believes this could lead to politicians who better understand the people they’re elected to represent.” I’m kind of appalled. Facebook has a lot to fix before they start rolling out stuff like this.
Politico: Trump’s social media director hit for Hatch Act violation. “President Donald Trump’s social media director Dan Scavino violated the law when he called on Trump’s allies to oust a Republican congressman from office in April, according to the Office of Special Counsel.”
Slate: Trump Isn’t the Only Politician Blocking Constituents on Twitter. “As President Donald Trump faces criticism for blocking users on his Twitter account, people across the country say they, too, have been cut off by elected officials at all levels of government after voicing dissent on social media.”