Clinton bots more talkative & influential than Trump bots around 2016 debates, study finds

While the popular narrative blames Clinton’s 2016 electoral loss on (Russian) bots, they actually helped her chances, according to a new study finding pro-Clinton bots were more effective at influencing voters than pro-Trump ones. While there were almost twice as many pro-Trump bots in operation before the 2016 election, the pro-Clinton bots were much more […]

‘Hello, Jack’: Iranian FM blasts Twitter for blocking real Iranians as ‘bots’

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has accused Twitter of “shuttering” the accounts of Iranians after misidentifying them as ‘bots’ involved in influence campaigns. “Twitter has shuttered accounts of real Iranians, including TV presenters and students, for supposedly being part of an ‘influence op,’” the minister wrote on Twitter on Sunday. In his post, Zarif […]

How Bots Ruined Clicktivism

As platforms struggle to detect and stop foreign interference in the midterm elections, there’s a thorny complication: many of the tactics used by spammers and trolls are also leveraged by real activists. https://media.wired.com/photos/5b9be4380aec005ccb6743f9/master/pass/Ideas_Renee_Cruz-Bots-FA.jpg

Bots on Amazon’s task service may be souring psych studies

It’s not uncommon for scientists to use Amazon’s Mechanical Turk for research — they can quickly gather survey data in return for a small outlay to participants. Academics are quickly discovering the limits of the task service with the modern bot-happy internet, however. Numerous psychology researchers have reported a sharp rise in the number of […]

Nine Inch Nails skips online ticket sales to fight scalper bots

Nine Inch Nails will not sell tickets online for its just-announced “Cold and Black and Infinite” theater tour this fall. Instead, NIN mastermind Trent Reznor is going old-school in an effort to beat the ticket bots: You’ll have to wait in line at the venue starting. Each person can buy up to four tickets. Why? […]

Russian Twitter bots tried to swing the UK election for Corbyn, investigation claims

Rob Stothard / Stringer / Getty Images Russia attempted to influence the UK’s 2017 General Election, an investigation by The Sunday Times states. The investigation made in conjunction with Swansea University found 6,500 Twitter accounts run by bots masquerading as English women. 80% of the automated accounts were set up during the weeks before the […]

Lamar Smith says Russian bots are trying to cripple US energy production

Enlarge / Chairman of the Science, Space, and Technology Committee Lamar Smith, R-Texas, seen here in 2013. (credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call) By now, there’s very little disagreement that the Russian government has been pursuing an organized social media campaign within the US. But there are still significant arguments regarding the goals and impacts of […]