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How Social Media Bots Are Systematically Influencing Voters

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 10:27
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Is it possible that there are bots on your social media feed that are influencing you to vote for a particular candidate? Researchers from California think it’s not only possible, it’s happening.

Computer science researchers at the University of Southern California made software to figure out during a on-month period how many tweets about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were generated by software instead of real people behind the screen.

“Looking at the content itself, but also the timing of the activity, the network structures, how information spreads from one account to another and so forth. Eventually we realized that about 15 percent of the accounts on the Twitter feed discussing elections in the U.S. are bots,” said research assistant professor Emilio Ferrara to KCBS news.

These bots are specifically programmed to influence how you vote, and it’s very likely that they have infiltrated your Facebook or Twitter feed.

If 15% of social media accounts are bots that are able to generate inestimable amounts of propaganda to assist a certain candidate, what more can these bots be doing to influence your mind?

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