Synthetic Messenger

Synthetic Messenger

A Botnet that Artificially Inflates the Value of Climate News.
Tega Brain, Sam Lavigne

In an algorithmic media landscape the value of news is determined by engagement statistics. Media outlets rely on advertising revenue earned through page visits and ad clicks. These engagement signals produce patterns of value that influence what stories and topics get future coverage. Presently, this logic is leveraged by the fossil fuel industry to back their narrative. In order to counter this effect, everyday, Synthetic Messenger searches the internet for news articles covering climate change. Then 100 bots visit each article and click on every ad they can find.


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