BBC tries to understand politics by creating fake Americans
By DAVID BAUDER — November 1, 2022
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NEW YORK (AP) — Larry, a 71-year-old retired insurance broker and Donald Trump fan from Alabama, wouldn’t be likely to run into the liberal Emma, a 25-year-old graphic designer from New York City, on social media — even if they were both real.
Each is a figment of BBC reporter Marianna Spring’s imagination. She created five fake Americans and opened social media accounts for them, part of an attempt to illustrate how disinformation spreads on sites like Facebook, Twitter and TikTok despite efforts to stop it, and how that impacts American politics.
That’s also left Spring and the BBC vulnerable to charges that the project is ethically suspect in using false information to uncover false information.
“We’re doing it with very good intentions because it’s important to understand what is going on,” Spring said. In the world of disinformation, “the U.S. is the key battleground,” she said.
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This is easily prevented by requiring a credit card and charging for access. Elon’s 8$/month will do more to eliminate, or down grade bots, than can be imagined.
The fee would eliminate fakes PDQ. Surprising that no one mentions it in the article.
Of course, there’s no way to comment on the site, because they are just interested in attracting eyeballs.