Warner sees Reddit as potential target for Russian influence
Samantha Bradshaw spoke to the Hill about the ongoing Senate Intelligence Committee investigations into various social networks.
Experts who have studied Russia’s attempts to influence the election say that Warner is right to be interested in Reddit. They note that many fake news stories can be traced back to the platform, pointing to it as the catalyst behind the spread of Pizzagate, a baseless conspiracy theory that sought to link Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to a fictitious pedophilia ring in a Washington pizzeria in the final days of the campaign.
“[Reddit] is one of the forms that some of the coordinated information campaigns happened on,” says Samantha Bradshaw, a researcher at Oxford University who has studied how governments use social media to influence public opinion. Bradshaw says that she’s witnessed patterns on the site that suggest a deliberate effort to distribute false news.
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