how science was used by the US for psychological warfare

Beyond Algorithms: Combatting Propaganda and Misinformation in the Digital Age

In June, I will be releasing a new book that explores the world of propaganda, misinformation, and the psychology behind these tactics. The inspiration for this book came from an article I wrote for New Scientist in the summer of 2020 about a study led by computational social scientist Meysam Alizadeh. Alizadeh and his colleagues aimed to create an “algorithmic propaganda weather report” to warn people on social media about upcoming influence campaigns. While we talked, I shared with him my own experience with a complex psychological operations (psyops) campaign on Twitter that manipulated information to influence people’s opinions and behaviors. This experience made me realize the importance of being able to identify and respond to such propaganda efforts on social media.

Alizadeh’s research opened my eyes to the challenges we face in the digital age, where misinformation and propaganda can easily spread and sway public opinion. I was inspired to delve deeper into this topic and explore how individuals and society as a whole can protect themselves from online manipulation. My upcoming book aims to educate readers on how to spot and combat propaganda in the digital age, empowering them to become more discerning consumers of information and think critically about the content they encounter online.

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