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BREAKING NEWS

If you got the dough Joe, you can buy your own "fake news" campaign
June 15, 2017




For a fat fee you can create your own "fake news" campaign
Chronicle staff

(NATIONAL) -- It would appear at times that nothing is sacred these days, there are no polite societal boundaries anymore - thanks to, according to some people, a great American divide fueled by years of a course, ugly, mean-spirited and hyper-nasty tone and tenor set by certain political parties and elected lawmakers in Washington DC - and most certainly there is nothing in this world that is not for sale.

That includes "fake news" campaigns. If you've got the money, you can fund one starting today.

The BBC is quoting a white paper published by Trend Micro, a well known cyber-security company as saying anyone who has about $400,000 can launch a whiz-bang "year long fake news campaign."

Trend Micro got that price and others off of "dark web" sites that "run the misinformation campaigns."

Items:

.....The fees cover setting up fake social media profiles, writing false news stories and spreading them via fictitious followers.

.....Trend Micro looked at Russian, Chinese, Middle Eastern and English language sites offering all manner of "services based around manipulating social media, search engines and news organizations."

.....Just fork over the money for a campaign and these fake news producers will create celebrities, spark "social unrest including demonstrations," discredit journalists and put "sustained pressure on elections or political parties."

.....Some of the services profiled "gave very detailed breakdowns of what could be done to influence political debate or manipulate the media."

.....Keys to making such fake news campaigns work are: creating stories, posts and discussions that "pander to its audience's ideologies". That means you amplify to a ridiculous level the nonsense or partial truths the target audience already believes. The audience then sees that affirmation of its beliefs all over social media (and sometimes it gets pick up by the real news media) and bingo! you have instant belief in whatever nonsense or conspiracy theory or ugly untrue rumor (i.e., President Obama was not born in America and was a Muslim) the fake news campaign is pushing.

According to rend Micro:

"Governments, companies, and users are all waking up to how serious public opinion manipulation—as manifested in “fake news”—can be.

Governments are starting to recognize that fake news is something that must be actively fought. Various government agencies are now setting up services to debunk stories that they consider to be false. They are also considering imposing regulations and punishing sites that do publish misinformation. The targets of these new regulations would include social networking services."

Required reading for all Americans. Find more details here at the BBC and here at Trend Micro .






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