How social media is used to manipulate news and elections
Learn about 'cyber trolls' and 'bots and much more about social media manipulation
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How social media is used to manipulate elections and news
Today social media is a stage where everything one portrays becomes known every mind, whether it is true or false. In this mysterious world of Social media is has become very easy to gather the mass following and to manipulate public opinion.
A study conducted by the University of Oxford on nine countries reveals that social media is widely used to manipulate public opinion and to promote lies. Once you have followers on social media it becomes very easy to achieve the goal of influence. “The fact that I have such power in terms of numbers on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.,” Donald Trump said in an interview and later he went on the win the Presidential Elections.
America sees a wider range of actors attempting to shape and manipulate public opinion online than any country—with governments, political parties, and individual organizations all involved. Politicians are always quick to blame the media when a news story doesn't put them in a favorable light. But politicians use media to win elections by getting the exposure they need to reach voters. Reporters have no choice but to cover the people chosen to lead the government. In election years, people who work in media should prepare themselves for the manipulation they'll likely face when a politician's quest for office runs head-on into the media's desire to seek the truth.
If it was once common to hear mass anti-government movements in the Middle East described as “Twitter uprisings” and “Facebook revolutions,” today these social media platforms are more likely to be linked to their potential for manipulating public opinions and influencing elections. The US Presidential Elections being the top example. In the recent past, ‘Cyber troops’ and ‘bots’ have emerged who are basically volunteers that by public funding can produce 1,000 social media posts per day.
A Harvard study estimated that the government fabricates and posts about 448 million social media comments a year. Now talking about the other side and coming to China which has banned Facebook and Twitter, its grip on the internet goes far beyond trolls, it also possesses the most infamous internet censor: The Great Firewall of China, which blocks foreign news outlets, internet tools (including Google search).