UC Davis: Most Twitter Users Don’t Follow Political Elites, Researchers Suggest

UC Davis: Most Twitter Users Don’t Follow Political Elites, Researchers Suggest. “While social media platforms are the primary source of political information for a growing number of people, a majority of Twitter users do not follow either members of Congress, their president or news media, a new study suggests. They are much more likely to follow Tom Hanks or Katie Perry than an elected official.”

CBS News: Candidates recognize the power of TikTok, “for better or worse”

CBS News: Candidates recognize the power of TikTok, “for better or worse”. “Wade Herring didn’t know the teenage voter who approached him at a restaurant over the weekend. But she knew Herring, a Democrat running for Congress in Georgia, from his campaign videos on TikTok. To Herring, a 63-year-old Savannah attorney, it was proof of TikTok’s precision-guided ability to reach young voters — the very reason why he and candidates from both parties have eagerly embraced the platform ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.”

Harvard Gazette: How to save democracy

Harvard Gazette: How to save democracy. “Donald Trump was the perfect ‘meme leader,’ appealing to an array of shadowy, loosely organized groups with varied philosophies but shared roots in internet ‘imageboards’ like 4chan and 8chan, along with a desire, like their adopted chief, to disrupt the established power structure.”

University of Bristol: New research shows U.S. Republican politicians increasingly spread news on social media from untrustworthy sources

University of Bristol: New research shows U.S. Republican politicians increasingly spread news on social media from untrustworthy sources. “A study analysing millions of Tweets has revealed that Republican members of the US Congress are increasingly circulating news from dubious sources, compared to their European counterparts.”

New York Times: Social Media Companies Still Boost Election Fraud Claims, Report Says

New York Times: Social Media Companies Still Boost Election Fraud Claims, Report Says. “The report, by New York University’s Stern Center for Business and Human Rights, argues that the companies fuel false conspiracies about election fraud despite promises to combat them.”

Washington Post: The Fetterman-Oz meme campaign, illustrated

Washington Post: The Fetterman-Oz meme campaign, illustrated. “The rivals for Pennsylvania’s open U.S. Senate seat are turning to uncommon tactics to paint their opponent as unqualified or unfit. Since emerging from the primaries, Democratic nominee John Fetterman has waged a relentless trolling offensive, creating moments that often went viral on social media portraying Republican rival Mehmet Oz as an out-of-state elitist. Oz began countering with his own posts questioning Fetterman’s health and willingness to debate, as well as his policy positions.”

New York Times: The Most Dominant Toxic Election Narratives Online

New York Times: The Most Dominant Toxic Election Narratives Online. “Ballot mules. Poll watch parties. Groomers. These topics are now among the most dominant divisive and misleading narratives online about November’s midterm elections, according to researchers and data analytics companies. On Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Truth Social and other social media sites, some of these narratives have surged in recent months, often accompanied by angry and threatening rhetoric.”

CNBC: Trump-linked SPAC faces new pressure from investors as merger hangs in the balance

CNBC: Trump-linked SPAC faces new pressure from investors as merger hangs in the balance. “Digital World Acquisition Corp., the company planning to take Trump Media and Technology Group public, is facing investor concerns about a potential failed merger with former President Donald Trump’s company. The Financial Times reported Tuesday that DWAC Chief Executive Patrick Orlando is negotiating with investors who said they would back the company through a private investment in public equity, or PIPE, deal.”

The Verge: TikTok plans to ban all political fundraising on its platform

The Verge: TikTok plans to ban all political fundraising on its platform. “Starting Wednesday, TikTok is expanding its elections rules to make it harder for politicians and political groups to fundraise using the platform — and plans to ban all fundraising activity soon. The changes come only six weeks before the November midterm elections.”

Washington Post: Trump’s ‘big lie’ fueled a new generation of social media influencers

Washington Post: Trump’s ‘big lie’ fueled a new generation of social media influencers. “The 2020 election and its turbulent aftermath fueled a powerful generation of online influencers, a Washington Post data analysis has found, producing sky-high follower counts for an array of conservatives who echoed Trump’s false claims of election fraud, known as the ‘big lie.’ … These accounts amassed followers despite vows by Big Tech companies to police election disinformation, The Post found.”

Not over: Young generations continue the fight to protect Martial Law memories (Rappler)

Rappler: Not over: Young generations continue the fight to protect Martial Law memories. “Project Gunita is a network of volunteers and members of various civil society organizations that aim to defend historical truth. They particularly push back against historical denialism and protect truths about the Martial Law years. Through the project, the three founders and their members created a digital archive of all materials that contain information about Marcos’ Martial Law to preserve them.”

Cornell Chronicle: Do trucks mean Trump? AI shows how humans misjudge images

Cornell Chronicle: Do trucks mean Trump? AI shows how humans misjudge images. “Researchers from Cornell and partner institutions analyzed more than 16 million human predictions of whether a neighborhood voted for Joe Biden or Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election based on a single Google Street View image. They found that humans as a group performed well at the task, but a computer algorithm was better at distinguishing between Trump and Biden country. The study also classified common ways that people mess up, and identified objects – such as pickup trucks and American flags – that led people astray.”

CNET: Google Doodle Encourages All Eligible to Register to Vote

CNET: Google Doodle Encourages All Eligible to Register to Vote. “One of the most important rights US citizens have is the right to vote. Voting is essential to maintaining a well-functioning democracy. To highlight the gravity of that fundamental right, Google on Tuesday dedicated its Doodle to National Voter Registration Day.”

Spotted via Google: Saving Candidate Websites

Spotted via a random Google search result: Saving Candidate Websites. From the home page: “Each year, thousands of people run for local political offices across the United States. Many of them create websites and social media sites to reach potential voters. But after each election cycle, thousands of these websites disappear from the web…. If these sites aren’t archived, we lose important digital artifacts from an election cycle — ones that are useful for future journalists, researchers and historians. With tools like the Wayback Machine and groups like the Archive Team, we can ensure that these sites are scooped up before they’re lost forever.”

New York Times: This Ad’s for You (Not Your Neighbor)

New York Times: This Ad’s for You (Not Your Neighbor). “Although millions of American voters may not be aware of it, the powerful data-mining techniques that campaigns routinely use to tailor political ads to consumers on sites and apps are making the leap to streaming video. The targeting has become so precise that next door neighbors streaming the same true crime show on the same streaming service may now be shown different political ads — based on data about their voting record, party affiliation, age, gender, race or ethnicity, estimated home value, shopping habits or views on gun control.”