Source Hacking: Vier netzkulturelle Techniken der Medienmanipulation

Gutes Paper von Joan Donovan und Brian Friedberg über eine Kombination altbekannter Netzkultur-Techniken, die sie unter dem Stichwort „Source Hacking“ zusammenfassen und im Kontext gezielter Medien-Manipulation anhand einiger bekannter Beispiele von Pizzagate bis Charlottesville untersuchen. Es sind Techniken wie diese, die die Editierfähigkeit aller digitalen Inhalte herstellen, wobei ich „Source Hacking“ als Edits zweiter Ordnung betrachten würde, während Coding, Hacks oder Manipulationen per Photoshop oder Deepfakes Edits erster Ordnung darstellen würden.

Keine der hier vorgestellten Techniken ist wirklich neu und ihre Wurzeln liegen in alten Praktiken der Netzkultur, gewannen aber auf Boards wie 4chan in den letzten Jahren eine semi-ritualistische Qualität und sie sind in dieser Kombination bei nahezu allen größeren Nachrichten-Events anzutreffen. Das Ziel der Medien-Manipulatoren ist immer die Platzierung von Propaganda in der Berichterstattung der Leitmedien, um linke oder progressive Politiken zu verhindern und/oder rechten Politikern zur Macht zu verhelfen.

Wer wissen will, wie Trolle und Nazis auf Plattformen wie 4chan kooperieren, um die öffentliche Meinung und den Journalismus zu manipulieren, bekommt mit diesem Doc eine nette Zusammenfassung ihrer Strategien.

Data & Society: Source Hacking: Media Manipulation in Practice

Online media manipulators often use specific techniques to hide the source of the false and problematic information they circulate. Joan Donovan and Brian Friedberg label this strategy “source hacking.” Typically used during breaking news events, source hacking targets journalists and other influential public figures to pick up falsehoods and unknowingly amplify them to the public.

In Source Hacking: Media Manipulation in Practice, Donovan and Friedberg use case studies to illustrate four main techniques of source hacking:

– Viral Sloganeering: repackaging reactionary talking points for social media and press amplification
– Leak Forgery: prompting a media spectacle by sharing forged documents
– Evidence Collages: compiling information from multiple sources into a single, shareable document, usually as an image
– Keyword Squatting: the strategic domination of keywords and sockpuppet accounts to misrepresent groups or individuals

These strategies are often used simultaneously, and make it difficult to find proof of coordination. While each technique is effective on its own, their ultimate value comes from “buy-in from audiences, influencers, and journalists alike.

These four tactics of source hacking work because networked communication is vulnerable to many diferent styles of attack, and finding proof of coordination is not easy to detect. Source hacking techniques complement each other and are often used simultaneously during active manipulation campaigns. These techniques may be carefully coordinated, but often rely on partisan support and buy-in from audiences, influencers, and journalists alike. Viral sloganeering allows small groups of manipulators to receive disproportionate mainstream coverage by encouraging those exposed to their slogans to seek further information online. Forged leaks are seeded by manipulators and set the stage to defame public figures. Similarly, the creators of evidence collages amplify falsified documents and propaganda to sway journalistic coverage and prompt audiences to self-investigate. Keyword squatting allows manipulators to impersonate individuals and organizations, creating false impressions of their targets’ goals and allowing for controlled opposition.

Manipulators who use the techniques illustrated here rely on quick deployment and prior organizing experiences to coordinate participation. Manipulation campaigns that gather on one platform to plan an attack on another are designed to give the impression of large-scale public engagement. This adversarial media environment requires both journalists and platform designers to think with the tools of information security and open source intelligence to spot when they are being manipulated. Greater attention to the coordination of manipulation campaigns across platforms is the most productive way to guard against their reach. Only through careful attention to the data craft used to create disinformation can these campaigns be debunked in a timely manner.

——————————————

Folgt Nerdcore.de auf Twitter (https://twitter.com/NerdcoreDe und https://twitter.com/renewalta) und Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Crackajackz), wenn ihr meine Arbeit mögt, könnt ihr mich hier finanziell unterstützen (https://nerdcore.de/jetzt-nerdcore-unterstuetzen/).

Schreibe einen Kommentar

Deine E-Mail-Adresse wird nicht veröffentlicht. Erforderliche Felder sind mit * markiert.