Long awaited Mueller report delivers unequivocal condemnation of … social media
Do Not Read Until Monday… Why not tumble down the wormhole of Japan’s glorious array of mascots instead?
This one is Yukimaru.
Mueller time: Long awaited report delivers unequivocal condemnation of … social media
After two years’ investigation, and a previously released summary that only served as an aperitif, Robert Mueller’s full (ish) assessment of Russian election interference and possible collusion dropped Thursday.
It’s a metaphorical fire mixtape of political intrigue and scandal, but regardless of what it had to say for specific individuals, it definitely showed social media enabling misinformation campaigns in the United States.
Russia’s Internet Research Agency perpetrated most of general misinformation campaigns, seemingly seeking only to stoke discontent and animosity between political factions. The report revealed this activity started as early as 2014.
The agency’s Twitter strategy had two parts, with fake handles for individuals, and many more bots created to expand the footprint of misinformation. These personas got quoted by media outlets and shared by political leaders and pundits. On paper, it almost sounds like an influencer campaign. But with, you know, robots.
Over on Facebook, it operated groups and pages with hundreds of thousands of members or followers, reaching 100 million+ people.
Again, plenty of this was previously known – however, it’s important to remember, it’s still not really getting “fixed”. Honestly, we should probably abandon the idea it ever could be.
For example, while Facebook this week banned some far right organizations from using its platform, there’s not exactly a mechanism that could prevent new ones from supplanting them. Perhaps algorithms or AI based on things like the propensity to share misinformation, but algorithms linked the Notre Dame fire to 9/11, AI is biased, and Facebook has gotten a bit liberal with its fact-checking partners.
Also, Google would like us to consider if the fire was part of a Satanic ceremony
Even Zuckerberg’s stated plans to make Facebook more direct message-oriented aren’t a solution: WhatsApp’s already harboring hate groups and is one of the key platforms used to spread misinformation in India.
Meanwhile, over at Twitter, well, Jack’s being Jack, which means he was in full deflection mode when interviewed during a TED event, while users’ more excoriating questions appeared in a livestream behind him.
OK, on to more fun stuff…
Odds + The End
- Facebook: We will. *puts you in head lock* Make You. *pulls your arm behind your back* Watch Facebook Stories *forces open your eyes Bird Box-style*.
- Way, wayyyyy more Instagram passwords were stored out in the open at Facebook HQ than previously reported.
- In other Instagram news, it may soon hide likes on posts. … It could the end of thirst as we know it.
- If the UK has its way, likes as a whole would be removed for younger users.
- Pinterest went public.
- Netflix is opening up a production hub in New York.
- Also, despite announcements from Apple and Disney, it’s still doing pretty well financially.
- Amazon and Google now each have ad-supported music streaming on their respective smart devices.
- Despite its struggles, HQ Trivia’s built a multimillion dollar ad business.
- Did you know NYC has an algorithm task force? Not even kidding.
- It may soon allow hiding replies.
- Twitter also acquired a quote-sharing app, maybe to improve conversation?
- Weekly Elon Musk Social Approval Rate: 91.2%
- Look Who’s Streaming Now: Criterion.
- Apple’s spending hundreds of millions on Arcade. That’s a lot of quarters.
- It’s also building up its News team.
- Is the world ready for Find Your iPhone+?
- Will Vimeo be the next platform to get “Stories”?
- That’s detention: Fellow kids are using TikTok to document reactions to addressing their teachers by their first name.
- TikTok itself is being punished in India, banned due to fears over predatory behavior, inappropriate content and cyberbullying.
- It’s also poaching talent from Snapchat…
- Bandcamp’s getting in the vinyl pressing business… kind of.
- In the tradition of airplane banners and that LCD screen boat in the Hudson, here’s satellite advertising.
- No joke: Meme makers are unionizing.
- April 19, 2019