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Researchers studied 160 million memes and found most of them come from two websites • Motherboard
Samantha Cole:
<p>Researchers at University College London developed a new way to measure how memes are made and spread. What they found won’t surprise anyone who’s peered into the darker parts of the internet in the last few years: The most toxic, yet most effectively spread, memes are first shared on two places, the subreddit r/the_donald and 4chan’s “politically incorrect” forum, called /pol/.

The researchers said they <a href="https://arxiv.org/abs/1805.12512v1">studied multiplatform meme ecosystems</a>, with a focus on “fringe and potentially dangerous communities.”

“Considering the increasing relevance of digital information on world events, our study provides a building block for future cultural anthropology work, as well as for building systems to protect against the dissemination of harmful ideologies,” they added.

They’re not the first to think deeply and academically about the meme ecosystem, but the patterns they found also bolster what we already knew about memes: that based on sheer size and spread of these communities, you’re probably sharing images that were made to be distributed in toxic communities…

…/pol/ had the highest volume of memes, while the_donald was the best at getting memes spread outside of its own community. Reddit and Twitter users shared more “fun” memes, they concluded, while /pol/ and Gab saw more racist or politically-motivated images.</p>


Has anyone tried comparing their spread to actual viral spread?
virality  meme  reddit  4chan 
7 days ago by charlesarthur
How Ireland’s Abortion Referendum Became a Test Case for Democracy in the Social Media Age
Exploring the "fake news" merchants attempting to subvert the Irish abortion referendum.
On 4chan, a number of users who identified as Irish attempted to infiltrate the online conversation and tarnish the pro-repeal campaign. Operation Zyklon encouraged users to spread awareness of a connection between Amnesty International Ireland and the philanthropist George Soros, who donated €137,000 to Amnesty’s My Body My Rights campaign in 2016. Operation Trojan Horse saw users sharing templates of fake pro-repeal posters with extreme captions such as, “There should be no limit on abortion up to birth”. Users were encouraged to print and spread these posters around college campuses and share them across social media. A particularly curious operation called Operation Drunken Monkey aimed to stifle student voter turnout by organizing club nights on May 24 in the hope that students would be too hungover to vote the following day.
4chan  repealthe8th  abortion  referenda  politics  fake-news  amnesty 
15 days ago by jm
The secret rules of the internet | The Verge
The murky history of online moderation, and how it’s shaping the future of free speech.
youtube  facebook  4chan  reddit  moderation  speech  harassment  safety  quality  offensive  malicious  content 
6 weeks ago by arrelid
xmcv/PancakeDownloader: 4Chan Image Downloader
GitHub is where people build software. More than 27 million people use GitHub to discover, fork, and contribute to over 80 million projects.
golang  4chan  images 
6 weeks ago by geetarista
The Handmaid’s Tale doesn’t quite get modern American misogyny - The Verge
Soft biological determinism doesn’t inevitably lead to harsh oppression, but that’s not the point. In The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood imagined how seeds of xenophobia, misogyny, and authoritarianism could utterly corrupt a popular ideology with many well-meaning supporters — because a Gilead can grow in any group that lets its principles take root. That includes Evangelical Christianity, but also a modern secular rationalism that’s being co-opted by white male supremacists, speaking the language of science and logic.
It’s not hard to envision a world that’s as cruel to women as Gilead, which is why watching The Handmaid’s Tale is so exhausting. But despite all its brutality, the show softens a more painful truth: misogyny doesn’t just persist, it evolves.
handmaids-tale  margaret-atwood  science-fiction  sf  misogyny  incels  4chan 
7 weeks ago by jm
twitter thread on incel culture, the "manosphere" and the rest of that toxic garbage
For the past little while, I've been working on a piece about Toronto's relationship to the alt-right, especially the "manosphere." Unfortunately that research has become relevant. I'm going to share as much as I can here for people who may not be familiar with these movements.
incels  manosphere  4chan  hate  internet  pua  kill-all-normies 
7 weeks ago by jm
incel culture explained
Details on a particularly odious pocket of misogyny on the Internet
misogyny  women  gender  feminism  incel  reddit  4chan  murder  manosphere 
8 weeks ago by nelson
Arshy Mann on Twitter: "For the past little while, I've been working on a piece about ...
For the past little while, I've been working on a piece about Toronto's relationship to the alt-right, especially the "manosphere." Unfortunately that research has become relevant. I'm going to share as much as I can here for people who may not be familiar with these movements.
arshymann  twitter  incel  manosphere  altright  toronto  men  misogyny  elle  elliotrodger  shooting  islavista  terrorism  mensrights  4chan  reddit  sluthate  PUA  davidfutrelle  wehuntedthemammoth  alekminassian  sexism  violence  medium  daleberan  inceltears  from twitter_favs
8 weeks ago by coslinks
The Algorithmic Rise of the “Alt-Right” - Contexts
recommended resources
Christopher Bail. 2016. Terrified: How Anti-Muslim Fringe Organizations Became Mainstream. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2016. A sharp, data-driven take on how the brand of extremism that specifically targets Muslims has moved to the center.

Yokai Benkler, et al. 2017. “Study: Brietbart-Led Right-Wing Media System Altered Broader Media Agenda,” Columbia Journalism Review (March 3). The discussion of filter bubbles is beset by an unfortunate both-sides-ism; this piece offers a valuable critique with its empirical take on the predominance of the right-wing.

Alice Marwick and Rebecca Lewis. 2017. “Media manipulation and disinformation online,” Data & Society Research Institute. An important and wide-ranging attempt to understand a variety of online platforms and how they have been manipulated by bad actors.

David Neiwert. 2017. Alt-America: The Rise of the Radical Right in the Age of Trump. Brooklyn, NY: Verso Books. Thorough reporting and concise prose provide a compelling look at the very American nature of the “alt-right.”

Safiya U. Nobel. 2018. Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism. New York: New York University Press. A crucial look at the way search engines and the algorithms that power them reproduce Whiteness and discriminate against people, especially women, of color.

Whitney Phillips. 2015. This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things: Mapping the Relationship between Online Trolling and Mainstream Culture. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Although Phillips now eschews the term “trolling,” this is a valuable critique and exploration of the portion of Internet culture that provided fertile ground for the rise of the ‘alt-right.’

Samuel C. Woolley and Phillip K. Howard. 2016. “Political Communication, Computational Propaganda, and Autonomous Agents,” International Journal of Communication 10: 4882-4890. An analysis of the manipulation of information by political bots and the politics of an era in which people encounter information architecture through devices and over the Internet of things.
alt.right  trolls  hate.groups  algorithms  social.media  propaganda  manipulation  reddit  corruption  nationalism  4chan  breitbart 
11 weeks ago by po

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