Oct 17, 2018

Twitter releases content tied to misinformation campaigns

Photo: Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Twitter is releasing all the content associated with 4,611 accounts it has tied to two previously announced misinformation campaigns by Russia and Iran — 3,814 accounts linked to Russia's Internet Research Agency, which meddled in the 2016 elections, and 770 that were linked to state-backed activity from Iran.

Why it matters: Twitter says the release is part of an effort to be more transparent about the "information operations" it identifies on the platform and opens up those operations to researchers aiming to understand meddling in U.S. politics.

  • By the numbers: The content released today includes more than 10 million tweets, more than 2 million images, GIFs, videos, and Periscope broadcasts.
  • Timing: The earliest Twitter-based activity from the accounts associated with these campaigns dates to 2009.

The big picture: Social media was the primary way Russia leveraged its political influence campaign in the buildup to the 2016 presidential election in the U.S., and the Department of Homeland Security has been pointing to foreign campaigns on social media as a concern for months.

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Coronavirus dashboard

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 1,365,004— Total deaths: 76,507 — Total recoveries: 292,467Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 369,069 — Total deaths: 11,018 — Total recoveries: 20,003Map.
  3. Trump administration latest: Peter Navarro warned White House colleagues in late January about the massive potential risks from the coronavirus.
  4. Federal government latest: The public wants the federal government, not states, in charge of coronavirus — Testing capacity is still lagging far enough behind demand.
  5. States update: New York death toll surged to its highest one-day total as state predicts a plateau in hospitalizations.
  6. 2020 update: Wisconsin Supreme Court blocks the governor's attempt to delay in-person primary voting until June.
  7. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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