Thousands of Twitter accounts were created in the October 2017 special election by Democratic operatives in order to boost Alabama Democratic Sen. Doug Jones by linking his Republican opponent, Roy Moore, to Russian influence campaigns. These accounts were created to pose as Russian bots.
The Democratic operatives were funded by liberal billionaire Reid Hoffman independently of Jones’s campaign and created more than a thousand Russian-language accounts that followed Roy Moore’s Twitter account overnight, The New York Times reported on Wednesday evening.
Billionaire Reid Hoffman gave the Dem operatives $100,000 for the project, which also included creating fake conservative Facebook accounts to dissuade voters from supporting Roy Moore, according to
“We orchestrated an elaborate ‘false flag’ operation that planted the idea that the Moore campaign was amplified on social media by a Russian botnet,” the operatives recounted in an internal report obtained by the Times.
Media outlets — both in Alabama and nationally — fell for the operation and amplified the false narrative in October 2017.
Roy Moore just picked up a whole bunch of twitter followers. But they ain't from around here, comrade. pic.twitter.com/vJBPVxqWIW— The Ostrich (@ALostrich) October 16, 2017
Alabama affiliate of USA Today The Montgomery Advertiser was the first to fall for the story. Brian Lyman who reported it and National media outlets quickly seized upon Lyman’s story.
The headline on a New York Post story, which cited the Advertiser read:
“Roy Moore flooded with fake Russian Twitter followers.”
Left-wing publication Mother Jones used the same report in a story titled, “Russian Propagandists
The Washington Post focused its story on the fact that Roy Moore blamed Democrats for the fake accounts.
Report by Jane Mitchell for MilneNews.com
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