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El Mercurio De Antofagasta, March 26, 2015

Northern Chile was plunged into chaos yesterday as the worst rains in 24 years hit the regions of Antofagsta, Coquimbo and Atacama, typically one of the world's driest areas. The Antofagasta edition of Chilean newspaper group El Mercurio reports that thousands of people have been affected by the flash floods, mudslides and that many roads have been cut.

President Michelle Bachelet declared a state of emergency in the northern regions. At least two people have died and 24 are missing. More rain is expected Thursday.

ABOUT THE SOURCE: Founded in 1906, El Mercurio de Antofagasta is a local Chilean newspaper and part of the El Mercurio national conglomerate.

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Ideas

How Facebook Knowingly Undermines The World's Largest Democracy

Facebook whistleblower Sophie Zhang says that the tech giant knowingly facilitates undermining democracy in India. Fair voting cannot be guaranteed if real people's voices are drowned out by armies of fake online commentators.

The Tek Fog app is allegedly used by online operatives to hijack social media

Sophie Zhang

-OpEd-

NEW DELHI — Earlier this month, The Wire published an exposé on Tek Fog, an app allegedly used by India's ruling, right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to make social engineering easier. The app is allegedly used by online operatives to hijack social media and amplify right-wing propaganda in the country.

The investigation immediately grabbed the attention of the Indian public. For the first time, everyday Indians were given insight into the inner workings of a major political party's Information Technology Cell (IT cell). Indians were forced to confront the possibility that their everyday reality was shaped not by the Indian public but the whims of shadowy political operatives.

They also discovered that their own ruling party would seek to phish their phones with spyware for the purpose of sending party-line propaganda impersonating them to friends and family. Such serious allegations more closely resemble an authoritarian dictatorship like the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and their hired online commentators, the 50 Cent Army (五毛党), than the world’s largest democracy.

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