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TOPIC: social media

eyes on the U.S.

Eyes On U.S. — No 'Vague Rouge,' No Final Results: How The World Makes Sense Of Midterms

While some breathed sighs of relief that the Republicans' predicted "red wave" sweep didn't happen, others chuckle at how long it takes to count the votes. And then there's Senõr Musk...

PARIS — Three full days later, and there's still no real clarity on the U.S. midterms — but the world has gotten used to American elections dragging out for days or even weeks, for both political and technical reasons.

One French journalist wondered if there’s a simpler way.

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New Probe Finds Pro-Bolsonaro Fake News Dominated Social Media Through Campaign

Ahead of Brazil's national elections Sunday, the most interacted-with posts on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Telegram and WhatsApp contradict trustworthy information about the public’s voting intentions.

SÂO PAULO — If you only got your news from social media, you might be mistaken for thinking that Jair Bolsonaro is leading the polls for Brazil’s upcoming presidential elections, which will take place this Sunday. Such a view flies in the face of what most of the polling institutes registered with the Superior Electoral Court indicate.

An exclusive investigation by the Brazilian investigative journalism agency Agência Pública has revealed how the most interacted-with and shared posts in Brazil on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Telegram and WhatsApp share data and polls that suggest victory is certain for the incumbent Bolsonaro, as well as propagating conspiracy theories based on false allegations that research institutes carrying out polling have been bribed by Bolsonaro’s main rival, former president Luís Inácio Lula da Silva, or by his party, the Workers’ Party.

Agência Pública’s reporters analyzed the most-shared posts containing the phrase “pesquisa eleitoral” [electoral polls] in the period between the official start of the campaigning period, on August 16, to September 6. The analysis revealed that the most interacted-with and shared posts on social media spread false information or predicted victory for Jair Bolsonaro.

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Social Media Envy Is More Than Just Your Imagination

Our Naples psychiatrist's view on unrealistic social media standards, feeling inadequate, and the price of happiness.

Some of my female patients are struggling with the way life is exposed on social media. It is becoming extremely problematic not only in relation to the beauty standards exhibited online, but also the family models that are exposed.

Some women — who struggle with their role as working women and mothers or housewives — have difficulty in understanding that behind a bright young entrepreneur who constantly shows herself on social media as a loving mother and wife, immersed in an opulent and perfect reality, there is a hidden world of waiters, nannies, makeup artists, hairdressers, drivers, airplane pilots and photographers, who certainly do not appear in videos and Instagram stories.

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Zelensky Reveals Why He Didn’t Warn Ukrainians About Russian Invasion

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky revealed in an interview with the Washington Post on Tuesday that although he knew about the likelihood of a Russian invasion, the Ukrainian government did not make the news public to avoid causing panic. “We knew about the war, but we could not warn the Ukrainians about it, otherwise, we would have lost immediately.”

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CIA Director William Burns had visited Zelensky in mid-January to warn of a planned Russian attack. But Zelensky stated that informing the Ukrainian public would have made a Russian victory more likely:

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Society
Dan Wu

Lipstick And Tiananmen: China Dives Into Livestreaming Censorship

It may have taken a little while, but the Chinese Communist Party woke up to the risks of losing control of information flows on livestream platforms.

Austin Li Jiaqi, China’s “lipstick King” and most famous beauty influencer, has been missing since last month from social media and livestreams.

Most trace his absence to a livestream on June 3 when Li was presented with a tank-shaped cake — it was the night before the anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.

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Geopolitics
Artur Weigandt

The Russian Soldier Turned Social Media Star — Revealing More Than Putin Might Like

Anatoly Dremov shares his experiences of the war in Ukraine on the Russian Telegram network – and reveals details that don't always line up with the Kremlin narrative.

“That damn Ukrainian 'dill' shot up our tank,” a young soldier says into his cell phone camera. Dill is Russian slang for “Ukrainian Nazis.” The soldier squats in a car. The camera pans to the street. Destroyed apartment buildings roll by, destroyed tanks and civilian vehicles too.

Then a change of scene: several soldiers, all wearing the Russian Z on their sleeves. “It doesn’t matter at all who we meet on the way to victory: young Ukrainians, old Ukrainians. They’ll all get it.”

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What sounds like a cheap Russian action movie is reality. The reality of soldier Anatoly Dremov, sometimes Artyom Dremov, also known by the pseudonym Snami Bog – “God with us.” Dremov is 25 years old and from St. Petersburg. Sometimes he claims to be the owner of a restaurant. Sometimes it’s a tobacco store. Maybe both are true. Maybe both are not true.

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Ideas
Nolan Higdon

Elon Musk Wants Twitter For The Big Data, Not The Free Speech

Oligarchs of the ‘Second Gilded Age’ in the like of Elon Musk are already able to influence the public's minds through media ownership. But getting a hand on Twitter means having access to its users' data and exploiting it for financial purposes.

During the Gilded Age of the late 19th century, and the early decades of the 20th century, U.S. captains of industry such as William Randolph Hearst and Jay Gould used their massive wealth to dominate facets of the economy, including the news media. They were, in many ways, prototype oligarchs — by the dictionary definition, “very rich business leaders with a great deal of political influence.”

Some have argued that the U.S. is in the midst of a Second Gilded Age defined — like the first — by vast wealth inequality, hyper-partisanship, xenophobia and a new crop of oligarchs using their vast wealth to purchase media and political influence.

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Future
Anna Lippert

Open-Source Methods, The Cyber Weapon Anyone Can Use In Ukraine War

Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, journalists and citizens have used open source online intelligence to help the war effort and fight disinformation. NGOs and amateur investigators are even using it to look for evidence of human rights abuses.

“#OSINT”: These five mysterious letters and hashtag have flourished on social media since Russia’s offensive in Ukraine. Open Source Intelligence is older than this conflict which broke out last February, but it the idea became better known to the general public as videos, photos and other conflict-related content abound, especially on social networks.

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What’s hidden behind this acronym is a set of methods allowing the exploitation of open sources on the Internet: videos or photos posted on social media, location data, satellite images or the positions of planes and ships shared by a number of websites.

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Economy
Yuri Litvinenko and Valeria Lebedeva

Instagram Nyet! Russian Influencers Lose Mojo On Homegrown Platforms

It's a different kind of "migration" indeed, from Instagram to VKontakte, after U.S. social media were banned in Russia. It's yet another kind of difficulty for Russians trying to continue with daily life.

MOSCOW — Since the outbreak of hostilities in Ukraine, access to international digital platforms and social networks within Russia has become virtually impossible. Facebook and Instagram were banned in late March, the activities of their parent company Meta were declared extremist and blocked, and Twitter was quickly added later to the hit list.

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Economy
Douglas Schuler and Laura Marie Edinger-Schons

Why Western Brands Are Dumping Russia So Quickly

More than 300 companies have announced plans to close stores, reassign staff or stop selling products in Russia since the Feb. 24 invasion. These decisions fit in with a recent trend of companies listening to customers, though the geopolitical factors are a new twist.

Many companies in the U.S. and elsewhere have been quick to sever ties to Russia – going well beyond applying the sanctions ordered by their governments.

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IKEA, Nike and H&M are temporarily closing their Russian stores. Disney, Sony and Warner Bros. paused the release of new films in Russia. Apple, Samsung and Microsoft stopped selling their products there. McKinsey, Ernst & Young and many other top accounting and consulting firms said they are leaving the Russian market – possibly for good.

In all, over 300 companies have announced plans to close stores, reassign staff or stop selling products in Russia since the invasion began on Feb. 24, 2022, according to a running tally by Yale management professor Jeffrey Sonnenfeld. Most recently, McDonald’s, Starbucks and Coca-Cola joined the list on March 8, 2022, announcing they would close stores and cease sales.

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Society
Laure Gautherin & Shaun Lavelle

Meet The Russian VIPs Defying Putin To Say No To War

Russian pop starts, artists and athletes are speaking out against the war in Ukraine, with some already suffering the consequences.

Vladimir Putin’s war on Ukraine is proving more difficult than he envisaged on the battlefield. But since last Thursday's invasion, there are increasing signs of domestic anger of his attack of a neighboring country where many have friends and family.

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Society
Eva Sauphie

Unzipped! The African Women Breaking Taboos Of Sexuality

In countries and communities where sexuality is often kept under wraps, more and more women are taking up their microphones, pens and keyboards to talk about intimate issues without filters.

When the subject of African women's sexuality gets media coverage it's almost always a bad thing, says Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah, a Ghanaian writer based in London: "through the spectrum of disease, HIV or repeated pregnancies."

While universal access to sexual and reproductive health services remains a central issue in West Africa, Sekyiamah wants to share other narratives. To do this, she co-founded the blog: Adventures from the Bedrooms of African Women.

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