Marc Owen Jones Profile picture
Ast Prof @HBKU | Digital Humanities | PhD @durham_uni | Formerly @ExeterIAIS | Author Political Repression in #Bahrain | SocMedia Disinfo on MENA & Beyond |
Chris #WearAMask 3.5% #RejoinEU #FBPE 💛🌊🎪 Profile picture eDo Profile picture Annette Profile picture Neal Rauhauser Profile picture Kay Lynne 🇨🇦♿️ Profile picture 20 added to My Authors
7 Jul
Really pleased to have been part of this investigation with the great @arawnsley. One of the major takeaways that I find fundamentally disturbing is the ease with which many global news outlets publish pieces without sufficient verification of contributors…
2/ Interestingly, what got this whole thing going, I received a tip from a friend who had been approached by Raphael Badani ( a fake journalist), who sent this message concerning @TawakkolKarman 's appoint to the Facebook oversight committee. I asked my friend to play along
3/ So he did, & requested a Zoom meeting with Raphael. Raphael refused due to 'security' reasons (2nd red flag). Instead Raphael asked my friend to share an article in @asiatimesonline times written by Lin Nguyen. The article was about the dangers of @TawakkolKarman on FB board
Read 8 tweets
25 Jun
[Thread] Wow, this is all the Twitter traffic involving @PriyamvadaGopal over the past two days. Around 35000 interactions from around 15000 unique accounts. Obviously many of support, but much of it racist bile ImageImage
2/ Perhaps it is obvious, but worth highlighting with data. An analysis of biographical data reveals that the most coherent commonality of those tweeting about @PriyamvadaGopal are pro-Trump and pro-Brexit. Trump, MAGA, KAG (Keep America Great) are all very common terms Image
3/ Most of the tweets in the sample are obviously directed at @PriyamvadaGopal -but the second highest number are directed at @Cambridge_Uni - suggest a concerted campaign to 'report' Gopal to her employers. One of the most retweeted people harassing Gopal is > @Suffragentleman ImageImage
Read 7 tweets
24 Jun
[Thread] 1/ Ok this is a GREAT example here of Grimes being dishonest and disingenuous. He posted a screenshot from Google Play Books showing that Mein Kampf came up as a 'similar ebook'. Grimes was trying to make a ludicrous point about 'big tech bias'. So I did the same search
2/ Sure enough, I searched for "Remaking One Nation". And Grimes is right, Mein Kampf did come up. I also cropped the image like Grimes did, to try and emphasise my point that "big tech" is clearly lumping in the soft right with HITLER. What's my point...
3/ Well if you don't go to some effort to crop the page like Grimes did, you will see that the other recommended books are by @CarolineLucas and @fotoole two authors who could not be further from Hitler (and supporting Brexit for that matter). Presumably Grimes thinks that
Read 6 tweets
17 Jun
[Thread]1/ It was brought to my attention that Conservative MPs were deleting retweets by @darrengrimes_ today. According to @deletedbyMPs - MPs appeared to be deleting tweets by DG en masse. In fact, if you look at deleted tweets mentioning Grimes, they spike today! HOWEVER...
2/ After looking at the tweets in question, it appears the suspicious activity is because @darrengrimes_ is deleting those tweets, thus causing @deletedbyMPs to believe that MPs have 'deleted' the tweets too (after all deletedbyMPs tracks MP activity, not that of DG). So the
3/ question is not "Why are MPs deleting tweets by Darren Grimes?', but rather 'Why is Darren Grimes deleting all those tweets?'. Next tweet I will try to figure out how many were deleted, and what they say exactly... Stay tuned...
Read 12 tweets
14 Jun
[Thread]. 1/ I did an analysis of the followers of @DefundBBC . Filtered out those who hadn't tweeted since June (and so were not using the "Defund BBC" hashtag but just following the account) Ranked them by who had tweeted the most, discovered the majority had blocked me. >
2/ Pretty sure I've never interacted with any of them. But I am curious what you all think. Here are some of the accounts> @KulganofCrydee @siaayrom @fiona_fionnagal @maseratlilady1 @princessofwails @2tweetaboutit @Roodgridance @HarridgePike @Jenfullick @pam30301
3/ Some more... @Scotlandbest (this pro Boris Scotland one is gold) @mjs121272 @yvettehenson @grieve51166 @oldroberts953 @carlyjay20 @ukipvoter @jaelmolew ...
Read 10 tweets
12 Jun
1/ [Thread]Let's Fact check @defundbbc. The #DefundtheBBC is a dis/misinformation operation (doesn't mean Russian), I mean there are repeated falsehoods that either indicate malice, overwhelming ignorance or selective bias. The discourse is also very propaganda-like ...
2/ Falsehoods. On June 9th, the Defund the BBC claimed that the 'BBC' did not report on Churchill's statue being defaced. This is false, as you can see from the screenshot on the right, it was reported as a mini video on 8th June. Here's the link…
3/ On 8 June they posted an image of altercations with the police claiming again "why didn't they report this?". The BBC did and more. Here's a screenshot (on the right) from BBC showing a still from an actual video of the bike being thrown into the police horse. A video folks...
Read 11 tweets
9 Jun
[Thread]1/ I see a lot of disgusting things online, but tonight the level of high level misogyny on 'Gulf Twitter' is astounding. There is a systemic campaign to smear two women journalists @OlaAlfares and @ghadaoueiss, who work for Al Jazeera. The campaign involves thousands
2/ of tweets from well-known verified accounts. The premise is revolting. Accounts, mostly based in Saudi, have leaked private photos of @ghadaoueiss - doing nothing but hanging out in her jacuzzi (how they even got the photos is alarming). The images are being deliberately
3/ spun to be lurid. The hashtag "the farm of Hamad bin Thamer" is trending. People on the hashtag are stating with little to no subtlety that women journalists such as Olaa and Ghada engage in sexual favours for increased salaries. Cartoon like below have even been created
Read 13 tweets
8 Jun
[Thread] 1/ Ok, "Defund the BBC" trended overnight in the UK. This is interesting, as British media outlets and personalities have come under sustained harassment recently on Twitter. (Scum media hashtags) Ostensibly this has been about defending Dominic Cummings and Undermining
2/ Black Lives Matter. Anti BBC tropes are not new, but this campaign seems to have been initiated by the @DefundBBC account, which was set up 7th June 2020. The Director of the Campaign is @JamesLYucel, a member of Glasgow Uni Tories ( @GUTories ) . Unsurprisingly
3/ as the Tory government have attacked the BBC recently. Perhaps oddly there were three accounts set up on 7th and 8th June, one called @DefundBBC_ , the other @EndBBC . I don't know if they were set up by the same person, but they all have the same generic messages. Should
Read 12 tweets
4 Jun
[Thread] Good morning everyone! Another important attack on media in the UK (and the world). The coverage of #DominicCummings may have subsided, but attacks of journalists using the "media scum" and "scum media" hashtags have not let up. Here's an analysis of 33,000 tweets
2/ This data involves around 10,290 accounts, with most tweets taken from the last three days (Jun 1- 3). The main targets (individuals not orgs) are @piersmorgan @susannareid100 @BethRigby @bbclaurak @peston @SamCoatesSky @campbellclaret @maitlis @adamboultonSKY @KayBurley
3/ The most popular digital predators (those who pose a danger to press freedom by intimidating journalists or promoting anti journalist content) include @DVATW (Dave Vance altnews + very right wing), Ex UKIP @GerardBattenUK : @HHepplewhite : @Mich1971C : @RuleBrexitannia
Read 8 tweets
3 Jun
[Thread] 1/ Add this to the list of suspicious Arabic accounts that have suddenly become pro-Newcastle United and supportive of the takeover by Saudi's PIF. Account stinks of PR. It smears the media, using the term 'hostile media' and seems to lionize MBS #NUFCTakeover
2/ In terms of tasteless behaviour, the account laughs at the letter by the fiance of the murdered Jamal Khashoggi (classy). Odd that the account is so into MBS, while many try to justify the takeover saying it is the PIF - and not MBS, who is involved. Suggest
3/ that #NUFCTakeover is as much about sportwashing and burnishing the reputation of MBS as it is about PIF acquiring the club. But how do we know it's suspicious. Read on >
Read 7 tweets
2 Jun
My latest piece for the @MiddleEastEye on the anniversary of the Gulf Crisis - "Qatar blockade: Saudi-led disinformation war is the tip of the iceberg"…
"What set the Qatar crisis apart is that it was one of the first international crises to have been initiated around a pre-orchestrated hack and disinformation campaign."
"Despite Twitter having knowingly suspended thousands of accounts connected to Saudi, Emirate and Egyptian information operations, the information war does not show signs of abating....."
Read 5 tweets
2 Jun
1/7 Trump's speech actually opened quite well. He acknowledges the need for justice, called Floyd's death brutal. Things go off the rails after the phrase 'but we cannot allow'. Here the speech becomes about demonising all protesters as violent criminals
2/ The bulk of his commentary shifts to demonising a non-specific group, shifting the focus of a fight for justice into a criminality trope of tackling 'criminals, looters, rioters'. He also says the'biggest victims' are peace-loving systems. This is unsubstantiated hyperbole
3/ His second section, rather than say focusing on a history of racist police brutality, is simply to try and 'evidence' the violence of non-specific crowds. He could choose to focus on peaceful acts of defiance, but the goal here is to make villains of anyone out in the street
Read 8 tweets
1 Jun
[Thread]1/ I've seen a few antisemitic and/or conspiratorial tropes in the form of the hashtags "soros riots" and "soros thugs" have been. The "great awakening"/Q account @CJTruth is highly RTd. I mentioned him before on a thread on Trump apologism for unsupported covid cures
2/ couple of clusters of Q and right wing accounts being alerted to the hashtag. These clouds linked by green lines mean these accounts have been mentioned in a tweet with the hashtag and someone has retweeted it (see screenshot from Grannie Lynda). #BlackLivesMatter
3/ Some strange accounts in there, such as this guy with a Morrocan and American flag in his bio, and who seems to be supporting Q/Great Awakening, and pro-Restart opposition in Iran. A rather unusual erm, but perhaps not surprising, account
Read 3 tweets
31 May
[Thread]1/ As a result of #georgefloyd's killing, there has been an uptick on Twitter in the vilification of the Somali Minnesotan community. This short analysis is based on around 23000 Twitter interactions (Tweets, RTs etc) from around 16000 unique accounts #BLACK_LIVES_MATTER
2/ I searched for the terms "Minnesota" and "Somali" to see what discussion was taking place around these terms. First, who is being retweeted the most. That's @chizmaga , then @mukhtaryare @johncardillo @AbshirDSM . But what are they saying, see next tweet #BLACK_LIVES_MATTER
3/ @Chizmaga uses whataboutism and false equivalence to try and portray the Somali community as hypocritical. See his tweet below. Former #NYPD man @johncardillo does something similar, suggesting somehow Somalis are deviant and have double standards as they are 'rioting' now
Read 7 tweets
28 May
[Thread] 1/ In the UK aggressive online attacks on the press and journalists continue following the #DominicCummings scandal. The "scum media" hashtag seems to be escalating. This thread is an analysis of around 28000 interactions/tweets on Twitter from around 9013 accounts.
2/ The majority of these tweets are from the 28th May. I will discuss who is being targeted most. @piersmorgan has dropped from top spot. @bbclaurak @maitlis @KayBurley @BethRigby suggest a misogynistic flavour to the abuse this evening. Some of you may be wondering why Boris
3/Johnson's name appears there. That's because people are sending him messages of support while criticising the media. Apparently these people fail to recognize the Johnson is also a journalist and member of the media. #notmovingon
Read 11 tweets
28 May
@KuqiCouture @farrow_lee @alanflipflop19 @tradercoach @piersmorgan @bbclaurak @Peston @adamboultonSKY @BethRigby innocence and guilt aren't part of it, few are claiming he broke the law. They are claiming he broke the spirit of the lockdown (gov refuse to answer questions of whether people can imitate Cumming's b ehaviour), as well as breaking lockdown rules itself (Barnard)
@KuqiCouture @farrow_lee @alanflipflop19 @tradercoach @piersmorgan @bbclaurak @Peston @adamboultonSKY @BethRigby the fact he has convenient lapses of memory, can't even remember/admit to filling up his tack point to lapses in his judgement and poke holes in the integrity of h is account. Any innocence until proven guilty as you put it is contingent on a willingness to reveal information
@KuqiCouture @farrow_lee @alanflipflop19 @tradercoach @piersmorgan @bbclaurak @Peston @adamboultonSKY @BethRigby which Cummings and No. 10 were not willing to do until it was exposed. I get the impression your notion of transparency is 'politicans will tell us and be honest'. Who needs media eh with such a raft of forthright folk.
Read 3 tweets
27 May
[Thread]1 As some have noticed, the hashtag '"media witch hunt" has been trending today. This marks the third iteration of the similar hashtags "media scum" & "scum media". I downloaded around 14,000 interactions from around 2700 unique Twitter accounts. See the diagram
2/ The large beautiful purple cloud is fairly easy to explain. The purple is the type of tweets [In this case, "a mention in retweet"] This is when someone gets mentioned in a tweet, and others retweet it]. In this case, it is people RTing this video by @rebeccabutlerm2
3/ As you can, Rebecca Butler has tagged a few journalists, the bbc, sky, and Emily Thornberry. A lot of traffic on this hashtag and trend is due to people simply retweeting this video by Butler, who is a barrister. Rebecca has been active on hashtags media scum and scum media
Read 5 tweets
27 May
Below is a graph of the inward tweets to five British journalists, @piersmorgan @bbclaurak @peston @adamboultonSKY @BethRigby on the "media scum" hashtag yesterday. Between 3 and 5pm UTC, just five of them received hundreds of tweets tagged "media scum". This is cyberharassment
These attacks can amount to what might be called by @RSF_inter as "press freedom predators" - who generally operate according to the following criteria. [And it's not just the right that do this, although the analysis above is mostly right-wing accounts]
@DrPicornell asked if we can identify top predators. We can, to an extent.Within my sample, we can see which accounts sent the most replies and mentions to the aforementioned journalists. Top 5 include @davcol1 @hickeyatwork @bankersreform @Coupdtat4 @DADickinson62 [Includes RTS]
Read 7 tweets
26 May
[Thread]1/ So the hashtag "media scum" is trending today. It's over taken 'scum media" as the hashtag of choice. What follows is an analysis based on around 19000 tweets from 7900 accounts. Will discuss key players, targets, and messages. #Dominicummimgs #DominicCummings
2/ The most retweeted people supporting the hashtag appear to be @KTHopkins (no surprises there) and a slew of unusual looking accounts like @SocialM85897394 (who blocked me yesterday) @trishaphillipss (also blocked me). These were all influential on yesterday's hashtag too.
3/ Those mostly being harassed on the "media scum" hashtag are journalists of course, but also MPs including @adamboultonSKY @campbellclaret @EmilyThornberry @kayburley @piersmorgan @bbclaurak @peston
Read 11 tweets
25 May
[Thread]1/ The hashtag "Scum Media" is trending in the UK as some people rally to defend #DominicCummings. With democracy constantly under attack, it's important to understand attacks on our media. I downloaded around 19000 tweets from 7030 accounts. Some findings 👉 #CumGate
2/ The network graph shows those tweeting on the hashtag, coloured by different clusters who interact with each other. In this iteration, the size of node represents the inward traffic on Twitter (e.g. is it being retweeted a lot, or replied to a lot). This usually includes two
3/ groups of people - 1) anyone tweeting the hashtag and being retweeted (whether for or against) 2) and those being harassed using the hashtag. @PiersMorgan comes out for someone being targeted a lot with abuse. Morgan has been, perhaps surprisingly, very critical of Cummings
Read 11 tweets
23 May
Tweets from yesterday mentioning Yusif bin Alawi, the Omani Minister for Foreign Affairs. You can quite clearly see a division between the large network on the left (mostly Saudi influencers and Omani opposition emphasising criticism of bin Alawi) and the group on the right
a mixture of commentators either debunking the claim or questioning why it was released now. What's interesting again on the left is the fact @Adhwan - the Editor-in-Chief of @IndyArabia is important in spreading the story. The recording, which appears to feature one of Gaddafi's
diatribes is hardly revealing. In fact, in the 16 minutes, Bin Alawi only utters around 435 words. It is mostly Gaddafi talking but I doubt many have actually listened to the whole thing. It seems to be argued that someone is trying to scupper negotiations involving Oman to
Read 4 tweets