Category: News Page 2 of 3
Some random website says:
“The English-language newspaper The Moscow Times, which is distributed for free in Moscow, and owned by the Finnish media company Sanoma, is also fully independent of the Kremlin, but it reaches almost exclusively English-speaking expats and tourists.”
According to Wikipedia, that information is out of date:
“In 2015, Sanoma sold MoscowTimes LLC to Demyan Kudryavtsev, a former director of Kommersant.
In 2017 The paper version stopped. The last paper number appeared on July 6..
In July 2017 the ownership changed to a foundation based in the Netherlands.”
Their about page doesn’t give much more information.
“According to Motherboard, which first reported Schmidt’s comments, he claimed the Russian disinformation strategy was easy to combat, since it is based on “amplification around a message” of information that is “repetitive, exploitative, false, [or] likely to have been weaponised”.
“My own view is that these patterns can be detected, and that they can be taken down or deprioritised.””
Like to see how they do that. I was a little annoyed with the Senate/House hearings which seemed to sort of gloss over Google’s massive role of collating and enabling access to information…
“Both outlets are wholly owned by the Russian government. RT is the overseas television station and online outlet, while Sputnik, the online-only media network, is available in over 30 languages.”
I guess in October of this year, Google pulled RT from it’s Youtube premium option, and around the same time Twitter offboarded both as advertisers.
I had an old blog years ago that I’m happy in a lot of respects is no longer online. It was fun while it lasted, but some things make better memories.
One such memory I recently tracked down, and reading it thirteen years later, it sounds quite a lot like current events swirling around so-called ‘Russian meddling’, ‘troll factories’ and fake news.
I can really imagine having a team of like 5 people working for a PR company who spend like 40+ hours a week writing blog posts. Perhaps each person would distribute their entries over like 10 different fictional blogger identities. They could write on things like news stories, political agendas, different products, all kinds of crap. Each of their fictional blogger identities could talk about roughly the same set of topics, but from a slightly different perspective – but each retaining whatever essential core elements they are trying to describe. I imagine it would bre pretty effective too, that 50 reasonably well-written and frequently-updated blogs would have a fairly wide audience and impact on an audience, which would expand outward in a ripple effect, especially if they were aggressively cross-commenting on real people’s blogs as well.
[…] blogs are not constrained by facts, so the potential to unleash distorted information into the bloodstream of the America people is enormous. And I also forgot to mention that you could also rake in web-ad revenues while you’re doing all this.
— 3 Nov. 2004
So if I was some kind of weird PR company or a government agency trying to influence public opinion, I would totally set up some kind of network of conspiracy theorists, complete with websites, lectures, email discussion lists, books, videos, you name it. I would then study the shit out of the people who were attracted to it. I would gather demographic data, and I would analyze their thought processes and emotional responses. I would then use this information to engineer better-designed news stories, press releases, publicity stunts, and the like. Ones which would be more hack-proof. Simultaneously to studying them, I would also flood the people I was studying with vast amounts of erroneous data to sift through in order to distract them from the more important and more straightforward cultural trends and events that are going on.
– 13 November 2004
What can I say…