French experts have launched new technologies to explore the formation of public opinion and astroturfing, as well as fake news and the manipulation of information. Director of the Institute for Complex Systems (ISC), Head of the Research Department of the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and Director of the Center for Analysis and Social Mathematics David Chavalarias talked about efforts in this direction during a meeting with Armenia’s journalists visiting the French National Assembly during a media tour organized by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The expert brought the case of dissemination of information on an attack on a woman as an example of astroturfing. The incident was presented in light of religion, and a discussion on the incident reached the national level in a matter of days. However, a study showed that a certain group had organized the discussion to form public opinion.
The politiscope technology, that is, colorful dot display of activities on Facebook, was created six months before the past presidential elections for a more detailed study of mechanisms. Several thousands of “respondents” from the political environment were selected as research “material”. They followed comments and examined tens of millions of Tweets, and the colorful graphic image showed the array of the selected “respondents”.
The expert presented the “transformation” of Alan Giuseppe into Ali Giuseppe as the second example of manipulation of information.
Over the past three years, diagrams have shown the transition from relatively similar and clearly expressed sympathies towards political parties to a bipolar and later a multipolar system.
Interestingly, in the case of false information, this information is published by one group and spread by other users.
It turned out that the French expert had also addressed Armenia in his study. The diagram shows how many users discussed the events that took place in Armenia last year, yet the graph shows only the fact that the topic has been discussed, without its tone.