Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Sunday, March 18, 2018

Carole Cadwalladr of The Guardian writes about a tech expert who regrets creating a sophisticated persuasion tool that used questionably gathered data from million of social network users on Facebook to manipulate elections: "It's an incredible revelation. It also encapsulates all of the problems of outsourcing -- at a global scale, with added cyberweapons. And in the middle of it all are the public -- our intimate family connections, our 'likes,' our crumbs of personal data, all sucked into a swirling black hole that's expanding and growing and is now owned by a politically motivated billionaire. The Facebook data is out in the wild. And for all [Christopher] Wylie's efforts, there's no turning the clock back."

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"Millions of people's personal information was stolen and used to target them in ways they wouldn't have seen, and couldn't have known about, by a mercenary outfit, Cambridge Analytica, who, Wylie says, 'would work for anyone.' Who would pitch to Russian oil companies."

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Not me. While I do have a facebook profile, I don't use it for anything other than logging into apps.

#1 | Posted by jamesgelliott at 2018-03-18 07:56 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

not me. prove it. i'm all ears.

#2 | Posted by ichiro at 2018-03-19 06:40 AM | Reply

#1 - And you think that doesn't provide Facebook information that isn't harvested and used and resold? That's Naivety. So they didn't try to manipulate you via FB directly doesn't mean it wasn't used or can't be used at some point to manipulate you.

#3 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2018-03-19 10:07 AM | Reply

Wow - that's an article. Holy ---. Talk about connecting missing dots. And after thinking about it for half a second you can bet that same data and it's derivatives made it to the troll farms.

#4 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2018-03-19 10:23 AM | Reply

We were already being manipulated with harvested data.

This may go the extra mile, but using targeted info as a "sophisticated persuasion tool"

is the entire basis of the Advertising Industry.

#5 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-19 10:57 AM | Reply

When I type the word Russian in this text box and click submit, the next screen shows me ads for Russian Brides.

When I search google for 'guitars', suddenly the Retort shows me ads for ---------- Music.

Google and Facebook algorithms are being built to form relevant content and search results.

If I "like" a post that says "crooked Hillary", I'm probably going to get peppered with anti-Clinton memes with googly-eyed gifs.

#6 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-19 11:02 AM | Reply

Oh, now I'm getting ads for a local grocer - Smith's Grocery - which is a Mormon-owned Krogers here in Utah..

#7 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-19 11:03 AM | Reply

I warned for years that Facebook would be used eventually for nefarious purposes.

#8 | Posted by Tor at 2018-03-19 11:37 AM | Reply | Funny: 1

NBC News @NBCNews

"Cambridge Analytica was meeting with Corey Lewandowski in 2015 before Trump had even announced and offering the services that I'm talking about right now," whistleblower Christopher Wylie said

www.today.com

I hope Mueller interviews Wylie, and I hope he has proof.

#9 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-03-19 11:39 AM | Reply

Try diaspora.

#10 | Posted by bored at 2018-03-19 11:47 AM | Reply

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I like to think most (but not all) of the regular contributors to the DR are fairly savvy and unlikely to be easily manipulated by such shenanigans. But there are millions of Americans -- including some members of my own family and acquaintances of mine on Facebook -- who are amazingly gullible and will post stuff that is clearly false. Sometimes it will be satire that they take at face value. Other times the information is from a fake news source, which can be easily proven as fake if you just spend five minutes exploring it. Still other times, it's paranoid whack-job garbage from Alex Jones-level sources.

Fake news is here to stay, and the social media echo chamber subjects each of us to attempted manipulation of the facts. The only protection is to be skeptical of everything you read. Don't rely on a single source for news. Don't believe anything Breitbart, Fox News or right-wing radio gas bags say. Don't put all your trust in the far left sources either. Don't even bet the farm on tried-and-true mainstream sources. Consider motive: How will this particular news item benefit the individual or organization publishing it? If it sounds too neat and tidy in support of your beliefs, be wary.

Clearly there's a problem here. Data harvesting for political purposes is fraught with danger, and something Facebook has claimed it tries to prevent. I manage social media for several organizations, and I can tell you, there are mechanisms in place that make it difficult for a guy like me to collect data on my followers. The Cambridge Analytical system is a way around those mechanisms. More detail here: www.theguardian.com

Re-targeting ads based on search terms is not the same as crafting individualized profiles on specific users. And this article talks about tying social media data to voter rolls. Yikes. We need to push back.

#11 | Posted by cbob at 2018-03-19 11:52 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

#5 | Posted by SheepleSchism

I agree with you that it is the whole basis of the Advertising Industry. The problem here is illegally collected and manipulated data. The commercially available information on you is staggering already but then throw in your Facebook data... wow. FB had some pretty sloppy security that allowed the harvesting to happen in the first place.

Honestly this is the whole reason for the GDPR in the EU. Heaven forbid we put protections like this into place in the US. Who will be the first company they take on for violations? FB? Google? MS?

#12 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2018-03-19 11:53 AM | Reply

#11 | Posted by cbob

I think there are a quite a few who are easily manipulated actually.

#13 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2018-03-19 12:02 PM | Reply

Bears repeating:

"Re-targeting ads based on search terms is not the same as crafting individualized profiles on specific users. And this article talks about tying social media data to voter rolls. Yikes. We need to push back."

#14 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-03-19 12:03 PM | Reply

If you go onto facebook and like or share content....you've surrendered your privacy in that you should expect businesses who have a product to sell or politicians who have an election to win, etc....will be targeting your account with content based on what you like and share.

CBOB is talking about taking it steps further I get the distinction there and I totally agree with how we need to push back on that.

but let's admit......fools that want to be told what to do.....they'll do it regardless.

#15 | Posted by eberly at 2018-03-19 12:29 PM | Reply

I wonder if this ever came to pass:

Data firm in talks for role in White House messaging – and Trump business

Trump strategist Steve Bannon apparently involved in talks despite being on board of Cambridge Analytica, which helped president-elect to victory

A data mining company that helped Donald Trump win the presidency is in early talks to snare two potentially lucrative new contracts, one to boost the incoming Trump White House's policy messaging and the other to help the Trump Organization expand its sales, the Guardian has learned.
www.theguardian.com

I'm glad the AGs of so many states pushed back against Trump's voting commission's demand for voter registration lists.

#16 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-03-19 12:44 PM | Reply

Not sure what help I gave them. My Likes mainly were for animal videos and picture, dislike for 45, and longtime fan of Neil Diamond.

I learned when an AOL message board volunteer beginning back in 1998 NOT to post personal information.

#17 | Posted by Judity at 2018-03-19 12:47 PM | Reply

"Not sure what help I gave them."

Yeah, I'm not sure how it works either:

As Wylie described it Monday morning:

This data was used to create profiling algorithms that would allow us to explore mental vulnerabilities of people and then map out ways to inject information into different streams or channels of content online so that people started to see things that may or may not be true. This is a company that took fake news to the next level.
thinkprogress.org

#18 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-03-19 12:58 PM | Reply

What do you guys think polls are used for?

You didn't realize the media,think tanks, and politicians have been crafting your opinion for decades?

Do you think that billion dollars used for the election was for hot sauce?

#19 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-19 01:07 PM | Reply

an article from 2012:

Microtargeting: How campaigns know you better than you know yourself - www.cnn.com

#20 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-19 01:09 PM | Reply

#19 It's more sophisticated than what think tanks have been doing:

Cambridge Analytica has built models that translate the data they harvest into personality profiles for every American adult -- Nix claims to have "somewhere close to 4 or 5 thousand data points on every adult in the US."

Cambridge Analytica has combined this social psychology with data analytics. They collect data from Facebook and Twitter (which is perfectly legal) and have purchased an array of other data -- about television preferences, airline travel, shopping habits, church attendance, what books you buy, what magazines you subscribe to -- from third-party organizations and so-called data brokers.

The strength of their [Kosinski and his Cambridge colleagues] modeling was illustrated by how well it could predict a subject's answers. Kosinski continued to work on the models incessantly: before long, he was able to evaluate a person better than the average work colleague, merely on the basis of ten Facebook "likes." Seventy "likes" were enough to outdo what a person's friends knew, 150 what their parents knew, and 300 "likes" what their partner knew. More "likes" could even surpass what a person thought they knew about themselves.

Combine this kind of predictive power with an army of bots and you've got a potent propaganda tool. www.vox.com

#21 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-03-19 01:52 PM | Reply

#20 TY Good article.

#22 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-03-19 01:56 PM | Reply

I hope they take into account that sometimes I like something accidentally or just to be nice to the person who posts it.

#23 | Posted by cbob at 2018-03-19 02:04 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Facebook is a globalists run terrorism and sabotage operation with degenerates, train wrecks, bug men and blackmailers as foot soldiers. Top to the bottom. Through and through.
Click here to find more:
twitter.com

#24 | Posted by Hrizvi at 2018-03-19 03:33 PM | Reply

"You didn't realize the media,think tanks, and politicians have been crafting your opinion for decades?" And

But, no one has been influenced to change their vote.

Right?

Welcome to the Information Age War.

#25 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-03-19 08:34 PM | Reply

"you've surrendered your privacy in that you should expect businesses who have a product to sell or politicians who have an election to win, etc.."

Not your profile info. You are supposed to be informed if your profile info is being shared.

Zuckerburg done Suckerburged everyone dumb enough to give it to him.

For money of course.

#26 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-03-19 08:39 PM | Reply

- But, no one has been influenced to change their vote.

Ordinary people are being herded with the soft drumbeat of consensus fed to you by MSM.

The Right used googly-eyed animated gifs and FB memes which spread like wildfire to secure an already formed opinion - Gun-grabbin, no borders, tax hoarders
While the Left has been using their own polarizing memes of racism, misogyny, xenophobia, division and chaos.

The info war comes from both sides, and it's relentless.

#27 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-19 08:47 PM | Reply

"While the Left has been using their own polarizing memes of racism, misogyny, xenophobia, division and chaos."

Based on reality on the ground bro. And the division and chaos is the Russians. It's their favorite tactic. They are playing off what Democrats are trying to achieve and what the Deplorables fear.

There is a huge difference.

Sad that you and your cohorts cannot see it.

You are just prolonging our agony.

#28 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-03-19 09:16 PM | Reply

The info war comes from both sides, and it's relentless.

#27 | Posted by SheepleSchism

Whataboutism straight from the KBG manual. Act like both sides of any subject are equally bad and therefore neither side deserves your support.

Sure your case of AIDS is bad, but it's really just the same thing as catching a cold, since they're both diseases.

#29 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2018-03-19 09:28 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

Reflecting back on the pre election spew coming from the fist full of Hilary haters I know personally ...the common element they all had was Facebook.

I have a page I visit maybe once or twice a month... to say hi to the g-son and my kid.

I never liked it...I saw/see facebook for what it was/is... a place for people with too much time on their hands to swap spit and venom.... because its cheap entertainment.

#30 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2018-03-20 06:51 AM | Reply

Microtargeting: How campaigns know you better than you know yourself - www.cnn.com

#20 | POSTED BY SHEEPLESCHISM

Look at you quoting CNN, the fake news organization of the year. (according to Dear Leader)

You are letting them manipulate you with facts!

#31 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-03-20 07:59 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

@JPw

a ridiculous work of fiction that show is.

for starters cops in riot mode are much more likely to use tear gas and pepper spray than guns

what's more if Mueller is fired it's a clear afront to law and order and the cops will be even more on our side.

#32 | Posted by Tor at 2018-03-21 01:35 AM | Reply

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