But there is evidence that Twitter may have been used even more extensively than Facebook in the Russian influence campaign previous year. Twitter said that most of these accounts were “directed at followers of mainstream media and primarily promoted RT Tweets regarding news stories”. Twitter used those conclusions as a basis for its own probe, revealing today that it found about 200 related accounts with dubious Russian links.
The company’s Vice President for Public Policy, Colin Crowell, met with staff from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence about the issues the social media platform faced, according to a blog post from Twitter.
I want to respond to President Trump’s tweet this morning claiming Facebook has always been against him.Every day I…
The Post’s report sheds new light on that effort and on Russia’s extensive use of the social-media platform as part of its disinformation campaign, and congressional investigators are reportedly “troubled” by Russia’s “sophisticated” understanding of the nuances of American political discourse. A report earlier this year from the U.S. intelligence community highlighted Russia Today’s efforts to influence the American electoral process.
“We will continue to work with official inquiries into these issues, and to share updates publicly as we are able”, the company said.
“Based on our findings thus far, RT spent $274,100 in US ads in 2016”.
And rather than pull a Facebook and have to continually backtrack (and eventually sort of apologize for) against increasing government pressure, Twitter went into these hearings by proactively sharing a roundup of three Russia Today accounts that targeted the United States market with ads during the 2016 election.
New descriptions of the ads shared with CNN suggest that the goal was to amplify political discord and fuel an atmosphere of incivility and chaos around the 2016 presidential campaign, not necessarily to promote one candidate or cause over another.
In a statement released last week, Twitter confirmed that it would meet privately with congressional investigators to discuss the use of its platform during the election.
“They were taking both sides of the argument this past weekend, and pushing them out from their troll farms as much as they could to try to just raise the noise level in America”, Lankford added, accusing Russian Federation of doing all it can “to push divisiveness in our country”.
“We’re certainly going to need more than just the advertisements”, he said. “We, as a company, should not be the arbiter of truth”.