Investigative team Sadbottrue has own technologies for data gathering and for meta-analysis of big data. We focused on findings and explanation of anomalies that influence on the tech companies. We are fighting against the social media and advertising fraud ecosystem.
Chapter 12. Stolen identity of the Texan was sold to pro-Bernie botnet
Warning! All the twitter accounts, tweets, replies, mentioned in this investigations, can be deleted or changed in every moment. All information is accurate at the time of publication.
The true story
The University of North Texas (www.unt.edu), a student-centered, public research university and the choice of nearly 37,000 students, is one of Texas' largest universities. The comprehensive university offers 99 bachelor's, 104 master's and 49 doctoral degree programs, many nationally and internationally recognized.
If you is alumni of UNT or live in Texas, you can scroll down photos of the campus.
UNT established at 1890.
It`s campus combines classic...
… and modern traditions.
The university has its own president. This is a very sociable and cheerful person Neal Smatresk.
Among thousand of UNT employees, you can find Donald R Noska Jr.
He has twitter @noskad, integrated into UNT social network, and our true story is about this account.
First of all, look at the description.
It's not even self-irony, this is an absolute self-sarcasm.
He doesn’t look like anime fanatic. It’s not even strange, it’s just inconceivable.
Check the stack of photos, he is a classic conservative nerd.
Among classical selfie, we can find just one crazy photo.
What are his interests? Whom does he follow?
The last one is the investigative reporter for USA Today.
Earlier, he followed two members of the boy band 5 Seconds of Summer. It is a great choice of music ... if you're a teenager.
There is the same thing again. The top row is better suited to the student than an employee of the University.
All the same, he is very modern.
His political views are modern too. From all candidates, he prefers socialist democrat Bernie Sanders.
And of course, he follows all accounts of UNT.
Who are his followers? Many of them are the official and unofficial UNT accounts.
In addition to UNT accounts, his followers are two unofficial accounts supporting Bernie Sanders. It would not be strange if he would be Paris Latino. But as we know he is white Texan.
Strange followers are not the only strange thing in this account.
Stats of twitter account @noscad is inexplicable. Let's look at this in more detail.
We analyzed the activity period from 1 June to 29 February. And here it is the monthly stats.
62 tweets, 59 retweets
11 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
9 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
92 tweets, 86 retweets
13 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
11 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
Too much retweets, but there are UNT president and two official accounts. Nothing special.
293 tweets, 264 retweets (average 9 tweets a day)
88 Bernie Sanders@BernieSanders
36 Bernie Sanders@SenSanders
29 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
12 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
124 total retweets of Bernie Sanders. This is unexpected, there were no preconditions for this.
537 tweets, 530 retweets (average 18 tweets a day)
205 Bernie Sanders@BernieSanders
117 Bernie Sanders@SenSanders
33 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
23 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
There are 322 retweets of both Bernie's accounts, 60% of the total for the month.
998 tweets, 908 retweets (average 33 tweets a day)
227 Bernie Sanders@BernieSanders
148 Bernie Sanders@SenSanders
53 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
44 Weird Science@weird_sci
34 Neil deGrasse Tyson@neiltyson
32 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
31 The Progressive Mind@Libertea2012
We see new popular science accounts and pro-socialist Progressive Mind. But the most amazing, the owner still has time to work.
790 tweets, 666 retweets (average 26 tweets a day)
190 Bernie Sanders@BernieSanders
113 Bernie Sanders@SenSanders
66 Weird Science@weird_sci
39 The Progressive Mind@Libertea2012
35 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
18 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
17 Neil deGrasse Tyson@neiltyson
303 retweets of Sanders, about 10 per day. How should react to this his followers?
1257 tweets, 1005 retweets (average 41 tweets per day)
235 Bernie Sanders@BernieSanders
164 Bernie Sanders@SenSanders
89 The Progressive Mind@Libertea2012
88 Weird Science@weird_sci
38 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
34 UNT Staff Senate@UNTStaffSenate
23 Neil deGrasse Tyson@neiltyson
20 Stephen Colbert@StephenAtHome
The absolute record: 399 retweets of both Bernie's accounts. And there is no time to sleep.
352 tweets, 305 retweets (average 11 tweets a day)
60 Weird Science@weird_sci
49 Bernie Sanders@BernieSanders
46 Bernie Sanders@SenSanders
18 Neil deGrasse Tyson@neiltyson
16 Neal Smatresk@UNTPrez
16 Stephen Colbert@StephenAtHome
16 The Progressive Mind@Libertea2012
721 tweets, 643 retweets (average 25 tweets a day)
93 Phil Plait @BadAstronomer
80 Weird Science @weird_sci
67 Bernie Sanders @BernieSanders
63 Bernie Sanders @SenSanders
49 Wil Wheaton @wilw
45 Zacharia Wahls @ZachWahls
38 Neal Smatresk @UNTPrez
30 UNTsocial @UNTsocial
20 Neil deGrasse Tyson @neiltyson
20 UNT Advancement @UNTAdvancement
Retweeted accounts equalized, anomalies disappeared. Except for the anomaly is the total number of retweets.
Total stats for 9 months (June 2015 - February 2016)
5117 tweets, 4476 retweets (average 26 tweets a day)
1061 Bernie Sanders @BernieSanders
687 Bernie Sanders @SenSanders
338 Weird Science @weird_sci
264 Neal Smatresk @UNTPrez
211 UNTsocial @UNTsocial
163 The Progressive Mind @Libertea2012
158 UNT Staff Senate @UNTStaffSenate
113 Neil deGrasse Tyson @neiltyson
There are 1748 retweets of Bernie Sanders during 7 months. This operation is repeated for 213 days, with more than 8 retweets a day. This is the absolutely mechanical action performed by a given algorithm. We have an example of real-time retweeting. All retweets are made in a few seconds after the original tweet appears. In order to do this, you have to be online and watch your feed for 14 hours every day.
That's how looked @noskad in February.
Tired of Bernie Sanders retweets, Don turned his attention to Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Picking 6 retweets in a row, allow winning the jackpot.
Astronomer and socialist… and UNT president.
Wil Wheaton, what are you doing here?
The retweet about Penis “Fencing” is really necessary for the Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology or for other Bernie supporters like as Paris Latino.
Some times his account posts handly picked political news, for example, the anti-Cruz article.
And of course, he took part in Bernie Sanders retweet-party about KKK.
For checking old tweets we would offer you to use Tweettunnel.com. This is a service that helps to see you earlier posts and not to scroll down the feed for hours. Recent 3,200 tweets are divided by 100, you can immediately jump to the earliest available posts. It uses Twitter API and completely reliable. Yes, for convenient applications we sometimes make free advertising.
Let’s look at http://www.tweettunnel.com/noskad. Earlier the account was not just Bernie Sanders retweeter, but #trumptroll.
Let's sum up the first results.
We have the large university in the large state, which build the new part of the campus. One of the administrators for special UNT Speech and Hearing Center create so strange twitter account. Do you really think he has enough time to social media activity? No. There should be an operator of the account @noskad and other accounts of UNT staff.
Take a look for his glitches. Photo from Holiday Party.
Just three likes, one from the account with no tweets.
This account looks like a bot, and act the same. It has just two likes, one of them is pro-Bernie.
The next glitch is the pair of identical tweets during 13 minutes. The operator forgot hashtag #unt125.
The operator use @noskad account not just for retweets by algorithms. The account is an active participant of Bernie Sanders campaign “wag the dog” tricks. For example, we have a tweet of Bernie Sanders, the first trick - egg-avatar accounts wich likes it (20K likes), the second trick - we found that tweet in account who is a serial pro-Bernie retweeter. The next level trick - the rude answer from the fake opponent account.
How does it work in the complex? Tweet with the imitation of popularity, the provocative answer of fake opponent… and the reply of trustful account. The reply with Nazi message. One more time: the operator uses @noskad account for Nazi trolling.
There is no universe where an administrator of The Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology can use his official account Nazi symbols and gestures in order to anti-Trump propaganda.
Take a look at the name of the account that is the classical troll for provocations. Some one uses it for serial provocations in twitter debate.
Look at another provocation, where Mike Casca @cascamike posted the anti-republican tweet and got 4,5K likes and 2,3K retweets. Next, we saw the same scenario: provocation from troll account and rude Nazi answer with mention of the real opponent.
Who is @cascamike, who has high engaged tweet with #GOPDebate?
Mike Casca, why you are so popular among pro-Bernie bots?
Тhе same Nazi picture was used by @noskad 9 times. The first time it appears December 15, the last time on February 11. Even trolls lack content.
Sometimes the operator replies directly to Bernie Sanders with it. All we know that Bernie Sanders does not manage his account. Perhaps he ought to do it. He would have learned a lot of interesting things.
But let’s continue review of the use of dirty political tricks in social media.
Sometimes operator replies directly to @realDonaldTrump with Hitler picture. It is a common reaction to mentioning Bernie Sanders and Hillary in Donald Trump`s tweet.
The bot operator uses the same picture even in discussions about capitalism.
Today we saw bot race 2016 wars. Yes! Account @MagicMeganGreen is a pro-Trump bot.
We live in future today: the next president of United states will be elected by bots.
Let's go back to Don Noska and his relations with @noskad twitter account. Is the relation between active Bernie retweeter (Trump Hater) and the official UNT social media accounts?
Whom followed UNT Staff Senate before @noskad?
We found many accounts of UNT related communities after @noskad
The previous account is @C3M338
Who are the other followers of that account? In what company is UNT?
It is among the bots, 3 of them are fake students or fake alumni of UNT.
What is the next account? @JailedKorra Anime style bot with a lot of tweets.
Look at the followers. UNT is again at the center of the international botnet.
Who is responsible for social media in UNT?
He tweets like Forbe`s top 10 social media expert. But why UNT social media activity looks like botnet?
Who else responsible for UNT social?
Content manager Michelle Hale. She has an access to all accounts in social networks and responsible for the quality of the audience.
Who is next? Content specialist Scott Slemmons. He is responsible for interacting with users on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other media sites.
Scott Slemmons has personal non-UNT related account.
He follows one of the pro-Bernie geek celebrity @wilw (Yes, Scott is a comics and fiction fan).
Another famous friend in his account is @neiltyson
We mentioned five real people in the article. All answers should be done after ask them questions. We have already said enough.
The Bot`s facts
1. There is one twitter account with steeled digital identity of UNT employee, who used as pro-Bernie retwitter and Trump hater.
2. Official UNT accounts follow bots and the account with steeled identity.
3. Official UNT accounts are managed by UNT team.
The sad questions
3. What way was made the updates? Was it a browser, API or mobile/desktop application? What was the digital device and it`s IP related with @noskad?
4. Does Kenn Moffitt, Michelle Hale or Scott Slemmons know about strange 7-month activity in one of UNT-related accounts?
5. Who in fact controls digital assets of UNT social accounts? How many personal UNT accounts are fake?
6. How many popular tweets of @berniesanders and other candidates are skyrocketing by fake supporters?
This story initially was published on 2, Marth 2016 as "The true story of Don Noska".