The Computational Propaganda Project

Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford

Social media ‘bots’ from Russia distorting global politics: study

Our recent case study series was covered in a Yahoo story, with a focus on the Russia report written by Sergey Sanovich: In Russia, the researchers said they found 45 percent of the political conversation is dominated by “highly automated accounts.” While Twitter was an effective tool for pro-democracy activists during the Arab Spring movements…

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Brexit bots and the UK election

Some of the automated Twitter accounts, or ‘bots’, that were among the most prolific during the UK’s EU referendum campaign have turned their attention to the UK general election, tweeting with increased frequency about Ukip and Labour. Our second UK General Election memo was covered by the FT. Read the rest in the Financial Times.  

One in eight Twitter election shares ‘link to junk news’

One in eight political stories shared on Twitter in the run-up to the general election is from a “junk news source”, research suggests. UK users shared one link from automated bot accounts promoting “junk” information for every four links to professionally produced news, according to the Oxford Internet Institute. Our UK General Election memo was…

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Labour dominating election conversation on Twitter, study finds

The Labour party dominates the conversation on Twitter, with almost 40% of tweets on election-related hashtags, according to a study by the Oxford Internet Institute about social media in the run-up to the general election. By contrast, tweets about the Conservative party made up just 26% of traffic, with the Scottish National party, Ukip and…

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How social media filter bubbles and algorithms influence the election

‘One of the most powerful players in the British election is also one of the most opaque. With just over two weeks to go until voters go to the polls, there are two things every election expert agrees on: what happens on social media, and Facebook in particular, will have an enormous effect on how the…

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‘Bots’ spam FCC website over proposed net neutrality reversal

Bots appear to be spamming a US regulator’s website over a proposed reversal of net neutrality rules, researchers have said. “Net neutrality is such a hot-button issue and it’s one of the few examples of online activism that’s actually amounted to something,” noted Prof Phil Howard at the Oxford Internet Institute. COMPROP Principal Investigator Phil…

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From autonomous drones to fake news generators, Military researchers seek to weaponise AI

“At least 22 countries are using public money to create digital cyber troops that can manipulate public opinion through bots,” says Samantha Bradshaw, a researcher of computational propaganda at the Oxford Internet Institute. She is working on a global project to quantify these efforts. Developing COMPROP research on Cyber Troops was covered by the Financial Times….

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French social media awash with fake news stories from sources ‘exposed to Russian influence’ ahead of presidential election

French voters have been deluged with fake news stories on their social media feeds ahead of the country’s presidential election, many from sources “exposed to Russian influence”, new research has found. Researchers from Oxford University found up to a quarter of the political links shared on Twitter in France were based on misinformation. They were identified as deliberately false…

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Sur Twitter, les Français moins accro aux “fake news” que les Américains durant la campagne

Ceux qui craignaient un déferlement à l’américaine de “fake news” (fausses informations) pendant la campagne pour l’élection présidentielle française peuvent se rassurer. Il n’a pas eu lieu. Les internautes français ont moins partagé les fausses rumeurs que les Américains, du moins sur Twitter, d’après les conclusions d’une étude publiée vendredi 21 avril par l’Oxford Internet…

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Could Fake News Alter the Outcome of the French Election?

Ahead of the French election, voters are seeing fake news propagated by bots, spammers, and foreign operatives – but it’s still far less than Americans were exposed to during the 2016 presidential election. Just over 4 percent of political links about the French election being shared on Twitter are misinformation, according to a new study…

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