The rise of professional “troll armies” and state-sponsored generation and spread of disinformation and discord has turned social media into a battleground for public figures.
Disinformation has scarred democracy, human rights, and impressionable youth.
The Philippines has been called “patient zero” in the global disinformation epidemic. Politicians running for office in the Philippines feel the pressure to hire their own troll armies just to have a chance.
Trolls think they are unstoppable. They have been doing their dirty work with no effort to disguise it and have faced no consequences. Facebook tolerates this behavior, despite their community standards stating otherwise, and so the trolls brazenly spew their propaganda.
But this isn’t just about the Philippines.
It’s a global issue. And it’s getting worse and spreading wider.
Trolls can’t be charged with libel because they’re anonymous.
State-sponsored troll armies are protected by the government.
Here’s the main problem: Social media platforms are doing little about it.
It’s time for us, the people, to fight back!
Social Media platforms are reluctant to enforce their own rules, since trolls’ divisive and emotionally charged posts and comments increase engagement and profits on the platforms. Some platforms don’t even have rules against coordinated inauthentic behavior and spreading disinformation (looking at you, YouTube).