Russian Facebook Ads Targeted Christian Voters
Attorneys for Facebook, Twitter and Google were present for a Federal hearing this week on the matter.
Russia has been accused of creating strife and division in American society[/tweetit] after a series of discoveries made by American tech companies. There is widespread belief now that Russia has played a significantly large, if not a key role in creating rifts between different sections of American society. Mostly done through Facebook under the clothing of various Facebook pages, tech companies have discovered that the magnitude of the issue may be many times larger than what people think, and it is hard to determine exactly what extent of damage has been done by Russian users posing as American pages.
Russian Facebook Ads Targeted Christian Voters[/tweetthis]
These Russian entities have especially targeted Christian societies, posing as Christian pages such as Army of Jesus. The posts on this page heavily targeted Hillary Clinton and shared pro-Trump propaganda, often equating Trump with true Christian values and Clinton as an agent of Satan. Experts suggest the way these posts appear it is hard to ascertain if the content was intended to create hatred against a certain party or not. However, it is clear that these posts acted as agents that intensified beliefs that were already held and made people feel justified in holding the views and beliefs that they did. The use of religion appealed directly to the sentiments of the American population so that the country soon found itself sorely divided on a lot of issues simply because the issue that they stood against was cast as demonic, evil and even Satanic!
A classic example of how these Russian page-admins promoted political propaganda is a picture of Jesus locked in a boxing face-off with Hilary Clinton. The posts even explicitly called Clinton ‘satanic’ and promoted Trump saying, “Trump isn’t a saint by any means, he’s at least an honest man and he cares deeply for his country.”
It is hard to say exactly what the impact of these Facebook ads has had on the people, but it was definitely enough to deepen the gulfs between people with different beliefs. These pages and ads have targeted Muslims, members of the LGBT and many more, apart from conservative Christians. The main aim was to target members of every group, instigating them to erupt into intensified battles with each other. At this point, it would not even be an understatement to suggest that these pages and ads may have played a role in deciding the results of the elections as well.
My takeaway: Don't believe any Christian publication under 60. It's probably a fake Russian site.https://t.co/Nl38yW9Lu9
— Ted Olsen (@tedolsen) November 3, 2017