The Computational Propaganda Project

Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford

European Commission Multi-stakeholder Conference on Fake News

Lisa-Maria Neudert represented the project on a panel at the European Commission’s recent Multi-stakeholder Conference on Fake News, part of a large-scale consultation process on fake news currently being organized by the European Union. A full video of the event, including the panel featuring our research, is available here. (Lisa-Maria starts at around 40 minutes of the…

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Moscow Reacts To US-Russia Probe Arrests

Lisa-Maria Neudert spoke to the BBC for a radio episode discussing Russian involvement in the 2016 US election. The Kremlin says the investigation into last year’s US presidential election has nothing to do with Russia, but that Moscow is following the proceedings intently. Also in the programme: Facebook says 126 million Americans may have seen content…

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Social Media, News and Political Information during the US Election: Was Polarizing Content Concentrated in Swing States?

US voters shared large volumes of polarizing political news and information in the form of links to content from Russian, WikiLeaks and junk news sources. Was this low quality political information distributed evenly around the country, or concentrated in swing states and particular parts of the country? In this data memo we apply a tested…

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Junk News and Bots during the German Parliamentary Election: What are German Voters Sharing over Twitter?

Automation and propaganda can significantly impact public life during important policy debates, elections, and political crises. We collected Twitter data on bot activity and junk news using a set of hashtags related to the 2017 German Parliamentary Election for a ten-day period in September 2017. We find that (1) traffic about the far-right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) accounts…

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Social media ‘bots’ tried to influence the U.S. election. Germany may be next.

Lisa-Maria Neudert was interviewed for this Science Magazine story on bots and the German election. Germany seemed a good place to try. The German parliament’s network was hacked in 2015—Russia is said to be the prime suspect—leading to worries that stolen emails might be published strategically to affect the election. (In France’s presidential election this…

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Twitter und Facebook müssen mehr gegen politische Propaganda unternehmen

Our case study series and the project’s German case study were discussed in an article for the German publication Heise Online:    Die sozialen Netzwerke Twitter und Facebook werden in diversen Ländern massiv dafür genutzt, die öffentliche Meinung zu manipulieren. Sie sollten mehr dafür sorgen, den politischen Einfluss einzudämmen, fordert das Projekt Computational Propaganda Research…

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Computational Propaganda in Germany: A Cautionary Tale

As part of our new country case study series, project member Lisa-Maria Neudert investigated computational propaganda in Germany. Political actors are using algorithms in efforts to sway public opinion. In some circumstances, the ways coded automation interacts with or affects human users are unforeseeable. In others, individuals and organizations build software that purposefully targets voters,…

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Caught in the propaganda crossfire? Bots on social media.

Lisa-Maria Neudert gave a talk at re:publica 2017 in Berlin. Computational propaganda – the use of information technologies for political manipulation – is on the rise. Social bots are crucial instruments in digital attacks: During the US elections 20% of all Twitter traffic was generated by them; and Trump bots outnumbered Clinton bots 5:1. During…

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Junk News and Bots during the German Federal Presidency Election: What Were German Voters Sharing Over Twitter?

Computational propaganda distributes large amounts of misinformation about politics and public policy over social media platforms. The combination of automation and propaganda can significantly impact public opinion during important policy debates, elections, and political crises. We collected data on bot activity and junk news using a set of hashtags related to the German Federal Presidency…

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Junk News and Bots during the U.S. Election: What Were Michigan Voters Sharing Over Twitter?

Computational propaganda distributes large amounts of misinformation about politics and public policy over social media platforms. The combination of automation and propaganda can significantly impact public opinion during important policy debates, elections, and political crises. We collected data on automation and junk news using major hashtags related to politics in the state of Michigan in…

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