Sunday, September 26, 2021

Social media: Laschet and Baerbock victims of organized campaign influence

Cologne City Gazette Social media: Laschet and Baerbock victims of organized campaign influence Gerhard Voogt 1 day ago | The Bundestag election campaign has apparently been influenced by coordinated hashtag waves from well-organized interest groups. This is the conclusion of an investigation by the research center "Correctiv". According to the study, CDU chancellor candidate Armin Laschet and the Green Party's candidate for chancellor, Annalena Baerbock, in particular have become the target of fake news. Laschet was attacked by the group "Destruction of the CDU," it said. Via Baerbock, an Instagram account with the title "fckdiegruenen" had spread fake news, it said. Armin Laschet and Annalena Baerbock© dpa Armin Laschet and Annalena Baerbock. The founders of the disinformation groups combined photos of the politicians with fake quotes. These were tagged with a hashtag that was spread by many people in a short period of time. "People collude to get hashtags like #laschetverhindern, #laschetschreibtab or #laschetluegt trending on Twitter. If many accounts use a hashtag within a short period of time, it is publicly highlighted on Twitter and thus catches the attention of even more people," the "Correctiv" report says. "Demonstrably controlled" Behind the "tweet storms" are partly private individuals, but also prominent politicians from the Greens and the Left, as well as environmental activists. For example, the Twitter channel of "Fridays for Future" promoted joining the channel "Destruction of the CDU". "The loud and regular outrage against Armin Laschet in the social media was thus demonstrably a controlled opinion campaign," writes "Correctiv." Thus, Laschet had been insinuated in the social networks that he had not been in the flood-affected town of Stolberg, but had stood in front of a green screen. The "Aktion Lichtblicke" campaign in NRW, of which Laschet's wife Susanne is patron, was accused of misappropriating flood aid. Baerbock was accused of wanting to ban New Year's Eve fireworks and pet ownership in order to save CO2. A 2019 photo showing Baerbock with U.S. billionaire George Soros served conspiracy theories. Josef Hovenjürgen, secretary general of the North Rhine-Westphalia CDU, told the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger newspaper that the targeted spreading of fake news had poisoned the election campaign climate. "The SPD also participated in the smear campaign with an election campaign spot containing nasty slander about the head of the NRW state chancellery."