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Propaganda & Artificial Intelligence

What follows are my thoughts after reading an opinion piece in The Atlantic and how I approach the issue of fake content on the internet.

Currently we experience AI generated advertisements, phishing scams, marketing emails. However, it can also generate convincing long-form content almost instantly with little effort from a human.

…a tool called GPT-3 generates long-form articles as effortlessly as it composes tweets, and its output is often difficult to distinguish from the work of human beings. In fact, it wrote parts of this article.

From the Article

When a Tweet or Facebook post sends you down that next rabbit hole of social or political arguments, consider the source. I’m not talking about your friend or family member, the actual source of the content. Was a citation provided? If so, did it come from a reputable website?

Domain Registration

Domain registration can help determine a website’s authenticity on geographical subjects. For instance, my website is registered in California. If I used this platform to routinely comment about something in another country as though I’m an authority… That would be a red flag.

Whois.com lookup for linuxbookpro.com

Several months back I had conversation with a friend about a political theory made by a website about several US specific issues. We went back and forth until I looked up the domain registration of the websites that sourced it… All located in Panama, all clearly written to influence Americans.

As we take on hotly contested issues on social media leading to the November 3rd election consider the following.

  • Screenshots of text can be easily faked
  • Confirm the the actual source
  • Consider that website’s geographical location

If someone is citing a source on a geographically specific issue and they’re not a reputable journalist or academic, be suspicious.


Bookmark: The Supply of Disinformation Will Soon Be Infinite
Disinformation campaigns used to require a lot of human effort, but artificial intelligence will take them to a whole new level.

By Joseph Dickson

Joseph Dickson is a web developer in higher education and an avid proponent of using WordPress’ core features to create flexible and manageable design solutions.

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