It looks like a blatant case of election trolling: a misleading stealth marketing campaign utilizing social media and bots to discredit one candidate and even siphon votes from him to a randomly chosen third-party hopeful.
Solely this wasn’t Russian hackers making an attempt to affect the end result of the 2016 Trump-Clinton presidential contest.
As The New York Occasions stories, it was a secret venture, carried out on Fb and Twitter, by Democratic tech specialists, with one function: to weaken the Republican candidate within the 2017 Alabama particular election for a US Senate seat.
In truth, an inner report boasts that “we created an elaborate ‘false flag’ operation that planted the concept” that GOP candidate Roy Moore’s marketing campaign “was amplified on social media by a Russian botnet.”
It additionally created a social-media increase for obscure impartial candidate Mac Watson, in hopes of drawing votes from Moore. And it labored, getting Watson an interview with The Washington Publish.
Furthermore, the $100,000 marketing campaign — paid for by the founding father of LinkedIn — was meant to “enrage and energize Democrats” and “depress turnout” amongst Republicans by emphasizing the allegations that Moore had pursued teenage women.
Moore misplaced that election to Democrat Doug Jones by 21,924 votes out of greater than 1.three million solid.
That is exactly the type of under-the-radar exercise that Democrats and the mainstream media have steered manipulated the 2016 election and gave Donald Trump an illegitimate victory.
But the Occasions goes out of its strategy to assert that the stealth venture was “too small to have a major impact on the race” and “confirms” that — with a Jones marketing campaign adviser.
Really, this was not some innocuous social experiment, as each the Occasions and the perpetrators counsel. It was a critical — and profitable — soiled tips operation.
Sure, it raises quite a lot of crimson flags for future elections. However the outrage ought to start with what truly did happen.