There’s a serious risk that Russia wins the information confrontation. As we have previously written, the Kremlin’s latest attempt to flood the information space with misleading and deliberately false stories focuses on the case of the nerve agent attack in the British town of Salisbury.
And this attempt proves to be extremely successful. As the Atlantic Council’s DFRLab has found, Russia’s disinformation stories are beating honest and truth-seeking reporting two to one. “Between March 28 and April 4, two out of three articles on the Skripal case shared on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Pinterest, came from Kremlin-funded media outlets,” writes DFRLab’s Donara Barojan.
Looking at the most popular Facebook posts, the situation looks even more grim. Out of the 18 most popular posts, 16 are coming from either Kremlin-owned accounts or else they share pro-Kremlin disinformation stories.
Such a massive offensive has obviously had some influence on the perception of the Sergei Skripal story. In Bulgaria, an opinion poll shows that 54% of Bulgarians consider that the Skripal case is a provocation against Russia, while 30% see it as a necessary mobilization of the West against a more aggressive Russia.
And as the researchers show, the disinformation stories were promoted and amplified by figures and organisations with significant audiences across Europe.
You can read the whole story here.
Updated 15.9.2018 11.00: Corrected “nerve gas attack” to “nerve agent attack”.