Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Do You Count On Faceborg For News?


It astounds me that a third of voters still fail to understand that Trump is a compulsive liar. But as Daniel Dale , the DC correspondent for the Toronto Star, and many others have pointed out, that’s because a third of voters get their information from crackpot sites— versions of supermarket checkout line tabloids for the 21th Century. And that can’t all be strung out on prescription opioids, can they? A couple days ago Dale wrote about about a 73 year old woman from Phoenix, Shardea, who has persuaded herself that Señor Trumpanzee “is ‘the most intelligent, powerful, courageous president we’ve had in years,’ a man with not just knowledge but ‘superpower knowledge.’ She didn’t pay close attention to politics before Trump came along, but she knows enough to know the mainstream media is unfair to him. Thus, she has found three alternative sources of information.” Now she gets her “news” from Trump’s tweets, from fascist cable channel OAN (which, last I heard, was still claiming Roy Moore won the Senate race in a landslide) and, of course, Facebook.

When people— Congress included— started making a big fuss about the Kremlin manipulating and gaming Facebook algorithms to undermine Hillary and spread propaganda for the Trump campaign, I was confused. Are there really people stupid and ignorant enough to use Facebook as a reliable, actionable source of news? Isn’t Facebook a toy? Whoah! Did I miss that one by a mile. I can’t stand Facebook. When someone contacts me through Facebook I feel resentful and send them my e-mail address. When they continue contacting me through Facebook, I ignore them. My tweets get propagated automatically on Facebook and the only time I access the page is to edit or correct or delete. I should be more with it I guess, since all the kids— like Shardea— are all over it.

This week, the Daily Mail ran a feature about a grieving husband who bravely shared a picture of his dying wife online only to have his account suspended by the Facebook authoritarians. It’s a gruesome story and it isn’t about Trump or Putin at all. It’s about Donna Lowe, a Milton Keynes mother of 4 diagnosed with cervical cancer and her husband, Elliott, urging others to get tested regularly.
In his powerful series of Facebook posts, Elliott revealed his 32-year-old wife had postponed her last smear test and begged women to never make the same mistake.

The photos had already been shared across social media thousands of times and the number was still rising as people rushed to praise him for his bravery.

But soon after the post vanished— and Elliott says he 'dreads to think what people are thinking' now that his account has been suspended.

Elliott told The Mirror that his page had been suspended 'due to unusual activities on it as a security procedure' presumably because of the number of interactions on the post triggering safety measures.
Jacquie at Blue America understands Facebook and interacts with it. She gets me to sign checks to advertise our candidates on it. I’ve never seen any results so I don’t know why we bother. On the other hand… all the kids are doing it (and have been since Facebook ads were, in part, credited with Scott Brown coming out of nowhere and winning a Massachusetts Senate seat in 2010. As far as we know so far, the Internet Research Agency, Putin’s internet troll farm in St. Petersburg, only spent $46,000 on Facebook ads to elect Trump— as opposed to the $81 million the Trump and Clinton campaign spent. TechCrunch explains this by pointing out that Russia “was using incendiary, divisive, eye-drawing content about polarizing issues, it likely was able to squeeze more impressions and engagment out of each dollar of spend than Trump and Clinton’s ads driving awareness for the candidates That’s because Facebook’s ad auction system preferences engaging ads by providing lower rates. By focusing on hot-button issues and playing into people’s biases, the IRA’s ads got widely re-shared for free by viewers.” Russia managed to reach 126 million Facebook users. “Reach.” Were the people reached that stupid? Apparently so… and, like Shardea, still are.

The Guardian uses the same number of Americans “reached” by Russian propaganda on Facebook during the election— 126 million. Keep in mind that 62,984,825 voters picked Trump (while almost 3 million more, 65,853,516 picked Clinton). Someone was wily enough to target some very key precincts in swing states Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio, North Carolina and Florida. “Facebook,” The Guardian reported, “believes 120 fake Russian-backed pages created 80,000 posts that were received by 29 million Americans directly, but reached a much bigger audience by users sharing, liking and following the posts. This was a Facebook ad the Russians ran to target simpleminded religionist morons who they were betting could be swayed to come out and vote for Trumpanzee. “Army of Jesus” didn’t sound very sophisticated, but he wasn’t trying to sway college graduates or NY Times readers. This people had to help Jesus defeat Hilary who “is a Satan… Even though Donald Trump isn’t a saint by any means, he’s at least an honest man and he cares deeply about his country.”

Didn’t you always feel that by undermining the American education system, the self-serving American plutocrats had something very dire up their sleeves? Did you think it was the same thing Putin had up his sleaves? And, by the way, Facebook content provider "Donald Trump America" was a Kremlin operative, technically not the actual Trump campaign itself.

And guess who this Russian Facebook ad was meant to appeal to and motivate to get out and vote.

Labels: , , ,


At 8:07 AM, Blogger tony in san diego said...

I don't get this? 25 to 35% of the people have below average intelligence. So what? You just on a post-Christmas downer?

At 4:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, it is truth to say that about half of americans will have below average intelligence. I maintain that, compared to 70 years ago, 90% have below average intelligence. Maybe 98%. But I only see what I see.

Faceborg? typo or what?

Actually, faceb--- is only good for, occasionally, keeping up with local news and looking up businesses who can't or won't afford a web site.

EVERYONE who is on faceb--- in a social way is a typical narcissist, a complete moron or both.

Anyone who believes anything they are forwarded or referred or copied (or whatever the verb is) on faceb--- truly **IS** a moron.

But America today truthfully is the 'land of the stupid and the home of the dunces'. If americans were fully formed human beings, faceb--- would be worth about the same as what's in my wallet right now... $68.

At 6:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I quit Facebook during the election and have never looked back. I had friends who were stupid enough to "like" and forward those Russian ads about evil Hillary Clinton. My spouse suggested I ignore them. I couldn't do that and it was driving me crazy. Since I left Facebook, my life has a lot less stress.


Post a Comment

<< Home