Fake news and propaganda isn’t just a problem in the United States. It’s a problem across the western world that is driving the popularity of far-right movements.
A recent article on BuzzFeed.com examines the problem in Italy, where it states that country’s most popular political party leads Europe in fake news and Kremlin propoganda.
The Russian interference in the politics of other countries (including here in the U.S. during the 2016 election) is particularly disturbing. It’s interesting given Russia’s mistrust of foreign nations and paranoia of foreign influence in their own country. This Russian dabbling in the workings of foreign governments needs to receive a strong and coordinated response from the West.
From the article on BuzzFeed.com:
The leaders of Italy’s most popular political party, the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, have built a sprawling network of websites and social media accounts that are spreading fake news, conspiracy theories, and pro-Kremlin stories to millions of people, analysis by BuzzFeed News has established.
Amid growing concern across Europe over the impact on democratic processes of fake news and Russian interference, Italy is shaping up to be the continent’s next major battleground thanks to the sophistication and wide reach of the Five Star Movement (M5S) propaganda machine.
This machine includes not just the party’s own blogs and social accounts, which have millions of followers, but also a collection of profitable sites that describe themselves as “independent news” outlets but are actually controlled by the party leadership.