According to an alert issued by the FBI and Department of Homeland Security this week, foreign-backed disinformation campaigns will spread fake news about the results of the upcoming US election in an effort to sow doubt and outrage among the American public.
The two agencies believe that in the immediate aftermath of the presidential election on November 3, Americans will be bombarded with false stories about the vote tally, reports of voter fraud, and other issues that would stoke division as the country awaits official election results – a process that could take weeks.
Unlike the 2016 election, when most of the disinformation was sprayed out in the run-up to the vote, this cycle will aim to even make people question whether the results of the vote are valid, the alert states. People are urged to check their facts carefully with multiple trusted sources – top tier news organizations and outlets, primarily – and on official government websites.
"The increased use of mail-in ballots due to COVID-19 protocols could leave officials with incomplete results on election night," the agencies warned.
Perhaps part of the answer lies in shutting down Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Whats-app during the election period to reduce the amount of misinformation being circulated. But then this could happen through poor reporting and radio stations and TV stations as well.
"The press, the radio and television play a big role in the life of the society. They inform, educate and entertain people. They also influence the way people look at the world and make them change their views. Mass media plays a very important role in organising public opinion."
Other approaches would be mild contamination of water supplies with a hallucinogenic drug, probably not a good idea given the circumstances. Attacks on critical infrastructure. Especially if backed up with mass hypnotherapy via the radio and TV of course?
It certainly appears to be quite a volatile situation brewing over there in USA at the moment.
I'm not sure if foreign power sowing disinformation will make much difference in terms of lack of clarity on the result. You suspect the sitting president will spread enough disinformation of his own to cast doubt on the result, unless he wins a landslide victory.
@Steve-Wilme Unless he does not infect all of the White House, during the next couple of weeks.
Given no is wearing masks in the environment or potentially banned from wearing them.
Because it is only a common cold surely? Not that many of want to follow the same example.