First Monday

First Monday is one of the first openly accessible, peer–reviewed journals solely devoted to research about the Internet. First Monday has published 1,682 papers in 255 issues, written by 2,343 different authors, over the past 21 years. No subscription fees, no submission fees, no advertisements, no fundraisers, no walls.

France from space
This month: August 2017
Disinformation and soclal bot operations in the run up to the 2017 French presidential election
Recent accounts from researchers, journalists, as well as federal investigators, reached a unanimous conclusion: social media are systematically exploited to manipulate public opinion. Some disinformation campaigns have been coordinated by bots, social media accounts controlled by computer scripts that disguise themselves as human users. This study describes one such operation that occurred in the run up to the 2017 French presidential election, based on a massive Twitter dataset of nearly 17 million posts, posted between 27 April and 7 May 2017 (Election Day). Prior interests of disinformation adopters pinpoint the reasons for the failure of this disinformation campaign: users who engaged with MacronLeaks were mostly foreigners with pre-existing interests in alt-right topics and alternative news media, rather than French users with diverse political views. Anomalous account usage patterns suggest the possible existence of a black market for reusable political disinformation bots.
Also this month
Public attention, social media, and the Edward Snowden saga
Although prior research indicated the power of social media in drawing attention to particular issues, little research explored precise patterns by which an issue sustains its salience in mediated social platforms. This research dissected the issue-attention cycle of Snowden revelations over a one-year period, using real-time, large-scale Twitter data. Social media attention varied dramatically over time by the specificities of issues. Volumes of attention were associated with traditional media coverage.



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