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AP - Propaganda, fake videos of Ukraine invasion bombard users

Anonymous 02/24/22 (Thu) 18:59:17 d8c803 (3) No.15714015

Propaganda, fake videos of Ukraine invasion bombard users

WASHINGTON (AP) — The messages, videos and photos flying across Twitter, Facebook and Telegram far outnumber the airstrikes raining down on Ukraine. They claim to show Russian fighter jets being shot down or Ukrainians dodging for cover in their own homes. Some are real, horrifying images of this war. Others had been lurking on the internet for years before Russia launched the largest attack on a European country since World War II. The invasion of Ukraine is shaping up to be Europe’s first major armed conflict of the social media age, when the small screen of the smartphone is the dominant tool of communication, carrying with it the peril of an instantaneous spread of dangerous, even deadly, disinformation. TikTok videos, propagandized headlines and tweets pinging out across screens around the world are confusing millions about the reality of how this battle is unfolding on the ground. Across Telegram and Twitter, Russia’s attack on Ukraine was both “unprovoked” and “necessary,” depending on the sender of the message. “The prayers of the world are with the people of Ukraine tonight as they suffer an unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces,” President Joe Biden tweeted Wednesday night to his 40 million followers. Russian state media, however, echoed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s comments across its platforms, with RT News blasting to hundreds of thousands of followers on Telegram that the action was “necessary.” Over the last few days, Putin and Russian media have ramped up false accusations that Ukrainians are committing genocide, and mischaracterizing the majority of the country’s population as Nazis, said Bret Schafer, who heads the information manipulation team at the Alliance for Securing Democracy, a nonpartisan think tank in Washington. Last week, for example, RT’s news director claimed on live television, without evidence, that Ukrainians might start gassing their own people. “You’ve really seen this escalation of the narrative that Russia needs to protect from this Nazi mob of genocidal Ukrainians,” Schafer said. As Thursday wore on, the truth became even more difficult for the rest of the world to disentangle from a string of hundreds of misleading tweets, deceptively edited videos and out-of-context photos that emerged after the first shots of war rang out. One clip, taken from a video game, amassed millions of views as users falsely claimed it depicted real attacks. A video captured by The Associated Press in Libya more than a decade ago was revived across Facebook and Twitter Thursday, with users saying it showed a Russian fighter jet plummeting through gray skies to the ground after being shot down by Ukrainian forces. And some TikTok users wrongly believed they were watching a video of soldiers parachuting into Ukraine after a Russian account posted years-old footage while Russia’s invasion was underway — that didn’t stop the clip from racking up more than 22 million views before the day’s end. People who see these videos, photos and claims online are likely to watch them, share them and move on with their day, said John Silva, a senior director of the News Literacy Project, a nonprofit that works to fight misinformation through education. “We see a paratrooper, he’s speaking Russian, and so we don’t take the time to question it,” said Silva. “If we see a piece of information that’s new to us, we have this compulsion to share it with others.” Moar… https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-technology-europe-media-social-media-80f729025396abf9ad9e4e9d0b4f5ece


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