Eliot Higgins Profile picture
Founder and creative director of @Bellingcat and director of Bellingcat Productions BV. Author of We Are Bellingcat. Tonal Whiplash Zone.
Neal Rauhauser Profile picture Antone Johnson • @antonej or @antone everywhere 👋 Profile picture never / ia Profile picture Birger Leth Profile picture Daniel O'Donnell Profile picture 61 subscribed
Apr 3 11 tweets 4 min read
Several weeks ago the FvD's @PvanHouwelingen submitted questions to the Ministry of Justice based on reporting by @AndereKrant and @TheGrayzoneNews. Last week those answers were received, but neither Pepijn nor the two publications cited have reported on them. Let's find out why. Image Just before Christmas the @AndereKrant and @TheGrayzoneNews published false claims that Bellingcat had submitted an article to the Dutch National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism (NCTV) ahead of publication to allegedly ‘attack journalists’. Image
Mar 5 13 tweets 3 min read
The new OECD report is one of the better examples of an intergovernmental report on dealing with disinformation, and actually gets it's not just about factchecking, but also creating a cycle that includes transparency and accountability. oecd.org/publications/f…
Image I believe that the current issues we face with disinformation are symptoms of a broader social and cultural shift that has occurred over the last 15 years, and Bellingcat and open source investigation is also part of the same shift.
Mar 1 6 tweets 2 min read
Anyone who has followed George Galloway knows his head consists entirely of tankie brain worms, having taken a denialist position on a wide range of war crimes and atrocities in Syria, Ukraine, and elsewhere, because he sees the victims as being on the side of "imperialists" So look forward to some tired tankie bullshit being repeated in Parliament on the rare days he bothers to turn up.
Feb 17 8 tweets 3 min read
I've seen two major disinformation themes around Navalny's death, one is misrepresenting already false claims, shown left, the other is repeating a story based on fabricated videos and documents alleging an affair. The second one we recently unpicked in the Bellingcat Discord.
The allegations were based on a video featuring a woman claiming to have worked for Yulia Navalnaya, but there's no evidence she ever worked for Navalnaya, and the video was posted on a social media account that was instantly deleted, and never crawled by a search engine.
Jan 16 5 tweets 2 min read
Graham Phillips lost his legal case against UK sanctions on him. The judge said "He has not shown any journalistic responsibility or ethics. His actions directly support Russia in its policies or actions that destabilise Ukraine." Post reaction gifs below:
independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/… First may I say "lol", and follow that up with "lmao".
Dec 16, 2023 46 tweets 8 min read
I’ve written this piece for the FT about the challenges we face globally with disinformation and the urgent need of a systematic approach to address the root causes of the creation and spread of disinformation, and the positive opportunities that offers. I believe that among many of the policymakers and practitioners who have attempted to address disinformation there’s a fundamental misunderstanding of the causes of disinformation, which has undermined our ability to deal with it effectively.
Dec 11, 2023 6 tweets 2 min read
The Community Notes on Musk's original tweet and the reply have both now been removed. Says everything about Musk and this platform.
Image Here's the notes that were removed, which includes one that's Twitter's own statements about Community Notes. Image
Nov 19, 2023 10 tweets 4 min read
I've spent my weekend fiddling with , which has a supernatural ability to make songs out of prompts. The latest update has massively improved its ability to make songs from short prompts.I asked it to make a song about Bellingcat, & I think it's awesome(?) Suno.ai
It has a simple prompt based system, but more features have been promised. In the meantime you can still make positive affirmation songs about cake:
Nov 17, 2023 6 tweets 1 min read
Just read a fascinating study on "affective epistemology" in digital journalism, which has me thinking about the emotional aspects of reporting conflict, especially with the recent events in Israel and Gaza. 🧵 tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.10… Researchers interviewed journalists covering the Russo-Ukrainian War to understand how emotions influence reporting. Turns out, (according to the study) emotions aren't just reactions; they're a form of knowledge. This raises questions about coverage in conflict areas, like Gaza.
Nov 13, 2023 5 tweets 1 min read
This is 100% correct, @elonmusk has done what's likely irreparable damage to Twitter because of his fundamental lack of understanding of what made the platform valuable in the first place. I hope for his sake his investors are forgiving. @elonmusk is doing a billionaire version of the Peter Principle, buying up businesses to the point of incompetence. The Elon Principle, I guess.
Nov 13, 2023 7 tweets 1 min read
🧵 One thing that I think many people don't appreciate about any conflict, in particular the current conflict in Gaza, is there's always grifters and bad actors willing to share fake and misattributed imagery. That doesn't mean it's some organised activity, just that some people will shamelessly seek engagement to build their own personal brand or make a political point.
Nov 10, 2023 5 tweets 2 min read
This footage from the immediate aftermath of the event points to it being the remains of an Israeli illumination shell, definitely not any sort of Hellfire missile. t.me/salehaljafaraw…

Image Le Monde's investigation into the explosion at Al-Ahli Hospital includes this comparisons of similar shell debris to an Israeli illumination round. Note the yellow paint.
Oct 26, 2023 8 tweets 3 min read
Bellingcat's Justice and Accountability team has been working with its partners and the Clooney Foundation on gathering evidence for cases related to the conflict in Ukraine, with three cases filed with German prosecutors today. Read more here: instagram.com/p/Cy2sri0qVl8/…

Building cases based on open source evidence for legal accountability is one of the key activities of @bellingcat, with our partners working with us to design and implement methodologies that can be applied to a range of conflict incidents. More here: bellingcat.com/what-is-bellin…
Oct 18, 2023 12 tweets 6 min read
In addition to the imagery of the car park in this IDF video we now also have the first daytime image of the car park that was hit. via t.me/QudsNen/82921

Image Here's daytime footage from the impact site at the hospital t.me/Bader12000/136…
Oct 11, 2023 7 tweets 2 min read
While we’re all discussing the spread of disinformation and misinformation on Twitter, I’d like to call out a certain behaviour some self-described OSINTers are doing that doesn't help the situation; posting videos, images, and claims without sharing the original sources. The point of open source investigation is it's open source, not special secret information, and for me the goal has always been to have a clear understanding of situations using open source material, sharing the original links to sources so other people can look for themselves.
Oct 10, 2023 5 tweets 3 min read
Last night, we saw a totally false claim about Israel bombing a church in Gaza go viral, thanks to multiple blue tick accounts repeating an unverified claim that had no evidence to back it up. Musk has created a fundamental issue with Twitter's credibility in moments of crisis. Those claims appeared to gain traction when the @DD_Geopolitics account, which is the renaming of the pro-Putin and anti-Ukrainian Donbass Devushka account, who changed their account name when their real identity was reported on back in April news.usni.org/2023/04/17/fed…
Sep 27, 2023 5 tweets 1 min read
I get asked about the risks of AI generated imagery and deep fakes a lot. I see them in terms of evidence and information. As evidence, we've nothing to worry about, as any good investigation uses multiple sources to verify and corroborate claims 1/ theguardian.com/technology/202… One of the first things we do with any video or image is attempt to geolocate it. AI can't generated imagery of real locations that could be geolocated, so it would fail that first verification hurdle. 2/
Sep 13, 2023 9 tweets 4 min read
Over the past week, @LauraLoomer has been flipping out about Kent McLellan, aka Boneface, a US neo-Nazi who claims to have fought in Ukraine. Now Bellingcat shows how court filings prove Boneface was making up those claims promoted by Loomer
bellingcat.com/news/2023/09/1… Online court filings place Kent McLellan, who goes by the alias Boneface, in Florida at the same time he claims he was fighting in last year’s bloody siege of Mariupol. Image
Sep 4, 2023 12 tweets 3 min read
One thing I've encountered over the last several years working with bodies like this is that they're often very conservative about the information and evidence they use to make their decisions, and are often getting to grips with open source investigation for the first time. A lot also often avoid media reports and NGO reports, because they often work in highly charged political environments where using a source that gets something wrong is a huge headache. However, open source evidence speaks for itself in many cases, but only with quality analysis.
Aug 8, 2023 5 tweets 1 min read
Maybe it's time for @MaxBlumenthal to come clean about how much money comes from donations from high networth individuals like Roger Waters, especially after insisting the Grayzone is just funded by multiple small donors? As usual, the Grayzone lads going on about other organisations funders is 100% projection. Maybe it's time tor yearly external audits, like we have a Bellingcat?
May 31, 2023 4 tweets 1 min read
Asking ChatGPT to rewrite a prss release in the style of a particular outlet to a set word count takes a couple of minutes, then you can get it on your website and wait for the clicks. It's AI powered churnalism. This also makes me think of the fake news websites I've encountered that put out months of content stolen from other sites to create a sense of credibility when they eventually put out fake stories as part of a disinfo campaign.