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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Russian Influence Operations 2024

Our latest book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses foreign influence and Trump's attack on democracy.  Russia helped Trump through 2020.

Russian influence operations have changed. After an abortive coup, Putin killed Yevgeny Prigozhin, who led earlier efforts.  The Russians are now doing things in-house, and poorly. Julia Ioffe at Puck:

Some of the mistakes are just weird, like the title of one of the Doppelganger sites, “50 States of Lie.” (Fifty states of lie? It just sounds wrong.) Or like the one I discovered on Across the Line, one of the websites in the Doppelganger network. “According to recent polls,” an article on the website proclaimed, “it is refugees who are mostly in favor of Biden’s second term and strongly support him, calling him their ‘daddy.’” (Daddy?!) Others, true to the directives we know were given to the staff of the agencies to imitate average conservative Americans, created posts that sounded more like Yosemite Sam. “I protect my home and my rights here in Texas, not listenin’ to them Washington games,” one such Telegram comment said. “We got bigger things to worry ‘bout, like illegal immigrants messin’ up our land. Don’t mess with Texas!” (The apostrophes are particularly amusing because, if there’s one thing we’ve all noticed on social media, it’s that people are sticklers about punctuation.)

And if that didn’t make you laugh, consider the fact that OpenAI found that these agencies were using ChatGPT to generate comments and posts—and then just threw everything up online, including ChatGPT’s error messages. Here’s an amazing screenshot, also from OpenAI’s report.

russia influence 2024 election
A Russian armed with ChatGPT, in other words, is still a Russian.