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Federal investigators are examining whether far-right news sites played any role last year in a Russian cyber operation that dramatically widened the reach of news stories — some fictional — that favored Donald Trump’s presidential bid, two people familiar with the inquiry say.
Operatives for Russia appear to have strategically timed the computer commands, known as “bots,” to blitz social media with links to the pro-Trump stories at times when the billionaire businessman was on the defensive in his race against Democrat Hillary Clinton, these sources said.
The bots’ end products were largely millions of Twitter and Facebook posts carrying links to stories on conservative internet sites such as Breitbart News and InfoWars, as well as on the Kremlin-backed RT News and Sputnik News, the sources said.
The flood of “fake news” this election season got support from a sophisticated Russian propaganda campaign that created and spread misleading articles online with the goal of punishing Democrat Hillary Clinton, helping Republican Donald Trump and undermining faith in American democracy, say independent researchers who tracked the operation.
Russia’s increasingly sophisticated propaganda machinery — including thousands of botnets, teams of paid human “trolls,” and networks of websites and social-media accounts — echoed and amplified right-wing sites across the Internet as they portrayed Clinton as a criminal hiding potentially fatal health problems and preparing to hand control of the nation to a shadowy cabal of global financiers. The effort also sought to heighten the appearance of international tensions and promote fear of looming hostilities with nuclear-armed Russia.
originally posted by: mOjOm
a reply to: xuenchen
Russia was using bots. That's been known for a while now.
What if the DNC was using them too. The DNC isn't a foreign Government.
originally posted by: Swills
a reply to: xuenchen
It no secret the Trump campaign and Clinton's had their own bots but Trump won the online war because he also had an online army of devote trollish supporters, lots of them and they were free hailing from sites like 4chan and The_Donald. Mix in Russian bots and he wins. He didn't know this kind of support was coming but he reaped the rewards.
originally posted by: ColdWisdom
a reply to: Swills
Mix in Russian bots and he wins.
Such an oversimplification of the ever so convoluted electoral process.
Things are usually never so simple.