The other half are also pretty dangerous…
“A lot of disinformation is done through innuendo or done through illogical statements, and those are hard to discover,”
“Because [the pandemic is] global, it’s being used by various countries and interest groups as an opportunity to meet political agendas,”
- There’s been a surge in bot activity in the past month in online discussions about reopening America from COVID-19 shutdowns, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University said this week.
- The researchers analyzed over 200 million tweets discussing COVID-19 and found that roughly half the accounts were likely bots.
- They identified the bots by looking for accounts that tweeted more frequently than humanly possible or whose location appeared to rapidly switch among different countries.
- It’s unclear who’s behind the surge in bot activity or whether they’re originating from the US or abroad.
President Donald Trump on Friday commanded America's governors to immediately reopen churches and other places of worship shuttered by the coronavirus pandemic, threatening to "override" the state leaders if they refused to follow https://t.co/kDT3NnDvVT pic.twitter.com/XsJDPS4Dxr— Dailian247 (@dailian247) May 23, 2020
There has been a huge upswell of Twitter bot activity since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, amplifying medical disinformation and the push to reopen America.
But in a new study, the researchers have found that bots may account for between 45 and 60% of Twitter accounts discussing covid-19. Many of those accounts were created in February and have since been spreading and amplifying misinformation, including false medical advice, conspiracy theories about the origin of the virus, and pushes to end stay-at-home orders and reopen America.