Tags: Trump Administration | Russia | washington post | fake | news | russia

Study: Russia Used Fake News to Influence US Election

Image: Study: Russia Used Fake News to Influence US Election

Russian Air Force (AP)

By    |   Thursday, 24 Nov 2016 09:25 PM

A surge of "fake news" during the election was supported by a Russian propaganda campaign that cranked out misleading articles read by millions to fuel distrust in U.S. democracy and its leaders, according to a new study reported by The Washington Post.

"They want to essentially erode faith in the U.S. government or U.S. government interests," Clint Watts, a fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, told the Post. "This was their standard mode during the Cold War. The problem is that this was hard to do before social media."

Watts's report on this work, with colleagues Andrew Weisburd and J.M. Berger, appeared on the national security blog War on the Rocks this month.

Another group, PropOrNot, researchers with foreign policy, military and technology backgrounds, planned to release its own findings Friday; the Post said it received the report ahead of its release.

The PropOrNot report identifies more than 200 websites that regularly peddled Russian propaganda during the election season, with combined audiences of at least 15 million Americans.

On Facebook, PropOrNot estimates that stories planted or promoted by the disinformation campaign were viewed more than 213 million times, the Post reported.

Some of the stories originated with RT and Sputnik, state-funded Russian information services, the researchers say.

On other occasions, RT, Sputnik and other Russian sites used social-media accounts to amplify misleading stories already circulating online, causing news algorithms to identify them as "trending" topics that would prompt coverage from mainstream news organizations.

In most cases, the "fake news" accounts hurt Hillary Clinton and helped Donald Trump, according to the Post.

"The way that this propaganda apparatus supported [Donald] Trump was equivalent to some massive amount of a media buy," the executive director of PropOrNot, who asked not to be identified, told the Post. "It was like Russia was running a super PAC for Trump’s campaign. . . . It worked."

The Kremlin has repeatedly denied interfering in the U.S. election or hacking the accounts of election officials.

The Post reported the independent researchers' findings about the mechanics of Russian propaganda operations track previous research by the Rand Corp. and George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs.

"They use our technologies and values against us to sow doubt," said Robert Orttung, a GWU professor who studies Russia. "It’s starting to undermine our democratic system."

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Newsfront
A surge of fake news during the election was supported by a Russian propaganda campaign that cranked out misleading articles read by millions to fuel distrust in U.S. democracy and its leaders, according to a new study reported by The Washington Post.
washington post, fake, news, russia
386
2016-25-24
Thursday, 24 Nov 2016 09:25 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved