Information Warfare: Russia and GMO’s

Everyone knows the controversy surrounding (GMO’s) Genetically Modified Organisms. Whether or not they are better or worse than natural organisms is still up for debate. Russia it seems has been spreading false information about GMO’s, portraying them in a very negative sense. They are claiming that they have a much cleaner agricultural way that those countries that use GMO’s. This claim that Russians were spreading misinformation about GMO’s was brought to attention by researchers at Iowa State University who were on a research project to find the underlying cause of the controversy surrounding GMO’s. Russia would link GMO related articles to very negative topics on the internet so when a person was reading something that was actually very negative like a crime or something then the link at the bottom of the article was to GMO related article. Hence, if an article about a crime is thought of negatively than the GMO link must mean that GMO’s should be seen negatively too.

Whether Russia has a cleaner source for agriculture or that the claim is misinformation itself is completely irrelevant when it comes to their ability to sway the public opinion. Russia is known for amplifying certain sensitive issues in the media, like black lives matter, and the 2016 presidential election. Russian propaganda is so discretely placed that anyone would think that it could be from anyone and it could even be a very credible source. Russia is on top of their information warfare game and they will not stop. I personally cannot criticize the Russians for leveraging their advanced skills in the dissemination of information because they are damn good at it. It seems that there is nothing that anyone can do about the spread of misinformation to sway the public opinion. Some people out there are very gullible and will believe anything that will fit into their belief system.

Russia must have some master trolls because their dissemination of information is proven very effective. I have some friends on social media and I laugh at their attempts to troll other people that are discussing issues that are sensitive to them. Russia on the other hand has taken the troll aspect of the information highway and turned it into an extremely effective means of altering the public opinion. Thinking about ways to defend against this kind of information warfare has me drawing blanks. It is a very difficult thing to defend against because many people will hop on the bandwagon just because it fits into their belief system and they will spread and troll just the same. In the United States of America, freedom of speech allows anyone to state their opinions but you just have to remember that sometimes it is the facts that matter and not what you would like to believe.

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Author: John Rowan

I am a Computer Science major at West Chester University and I love everything to do with computers. My specialty is Android programming but I actually love to code in any language specifically learning new things.