Secret Kremlin ‘Troll Farm’ Spreads Fake News About U.S.

Kremlin Troll Factory - YouTubeBewildered in recent years by all the vitriolic hatred directed toward the U.S. from foreigners? Turns out it’s not all real. The propaganda machine of the Kremlin during Russia’s communist era, known as Pravda, has reinvented itself and is making a resurgence, this time through “Kremlin Trolls” who litter onine news sites and social media with Vladimir Putin’s agenda. Yesterday, in a huge expose, The New York Times labeled it “the biggest trolling operation in history …  a highly coordinated disinformation campaign, involving dozens of fake accounts that posted hundreds of tweets for hours, targeting a list of figures precisely chosen to generate maximum attention.”

Going by the innocuous sounding “Internet Research Agency,” the “Troll Factory” is located in an austere, probably Soviet-era gray cement building in St. Petersburg, a creepy throwback to the communist era. The shades on the windows are never opened. A video showing employees entering the building and sitting next to each other in the “Troll Den” was leaked and posted to YouTube.

Staffed by mostly young adults eager to make higher than average wages, the trolls work in 12-hour shifts, with quotas of 135 posts or so per shift. There are an estimated 400 employees. One department is completely devoted to posting on LiveJournal, which is popular in Russia; another one is dedicated to creating images and “demotivators,” images that denigrate their subject matter. One department deals entirely with Ukrainian propaganda, other departments target The New York Times, the BBC and CNN. Even the conservative site The Blaze has been targeted in its comments section. Popular social media sites trolled include Instagram, Twitter and VKontakte, which is Russia’s version of Facebook.

Read the rest of the article at Townhall

Kremlin Troll Factory2 - YouTube

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