March 30, 2017

"Starbird is in the field of 'crisis informatics,' or how information flows after a disaster."

Seattle Times: She got into it to see how social media might be used for the public good, such as to aid emergency responders. by Danny Westneat

'Instead she’s gone down a dark rabbit hole, one that wends through the back warrens of the web and all the way up to the White House.

'Starbird argues in a new paper (pdf), set to be presented at a computational social-science conference in May, that these “strange clusters” of wild conspiracy talk, when mapped, point to an emerging alternative media ecosystem on the web of surprising power and reach.

'It features sites such as Infowars.com, hosted by informal President Donald Trump adviser Alex Jones, which has pushed a range of conspiracies, including that the Sandy Hook school shooting was a staged fake.'

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