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 15. Make America Bot Again. Part two
The true story
In the most scandalous news, last week was the collage with the photo of Heidi Cruz that published Donald Trump in his Twitter. Somehow, no one asked a question who was the author of this picture and whom quoted by Trump?
At first, clarify some definitions. For some reason, everyone called it a retweet, although technically it is wrong. It was a quote or repost. This is an important moment. Retweet may be done in one click, and repost needs to completely copy and paste. It’s important. We can see the retweets and likes for Trump rather than the original tweet.
So, the Trump supporter who made this collage was @Don_Vito_08
The account was signed August 20, 2015. The period of highest activity was registered the first three months of 2016. Today, March 28, he has 29.1K tweets. But 40 days earlier, February 16 the number of tweets was 12.7K. This means that he has done more than 400 tweets per day during this period.
Most retweeted persons in the last 10 days are:
- Donald J. Trump 153
- Bill Mitchell 54
- Dan Scavino 36
There was no doubt. But he is not just serial retweeter, he is a serial publisher. He publishes everyday sets of pictures with the same captions and hashtags. The last series called #Wisconsin "We Need A Great President" and contains a set of hashtags and youtube link. Total these tweets were posted 25 times, the last 16 tweets been published one after the other for 10 minutes.
The conclusion is simple. This account has a split personality. One-half is controlled automatically and performs regular activities, other posts "original" content and offends opponents Trump. Half bot, half troll.
Moreover, the operator is busy there on a full-time, and the content is made a few more people. In addition, there is a programmer who wrote an algorithm by which it carries out regular activities. Obviously, it was made by fans supporting Trump for free. Do you really think that this work can be done for money? ORLY?
The second important thing. As we have said, Don Vito makes at a rate of up to 400 tweets per day, at 16-hour working day, it is 25 tweets per hour. How Trump managed to see this picture in his feed? Oh, it was not in his feed because he had not signed him. How did he even know about this picture?
Finally, in the third. This tweet, like all other tweets of Trump, got a high engagement by the botnet. Millions of fake accounts simulate Trump's popularity in social networks. Let's look at a dozen followers of Don Vito, who has few friends.
It's like a family album. You can find there Donald, Eric and Melania Trump, Corey Lewandovski, Dan Scavino, Ben Carson, and all of Trump Hotels accounts.
It's funny, but there are also opponents of Trump: Ted Cruz, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama. Quite comical look Disney’s accounts and verified account U.S. Manila Embassy (all screenshots can be seen after the article).
Retweets for Don Vito are made by the same bots as Trump. An excellent example is the account @miramax1. It is the very old bot. He made the first tweet in August 2008 and then fell silent for seven and a half years. In February 2016, Trump woke him up and asked him to help to make America great again. Boat agreed.
Since then it made 33 retweets of Don Vito and 23 of Donald Trump. The rest of this 226 tweets are retweets independent supporters of Trump and articles about him in various media.
The same bots retweeted collage with Heidi Cruz. Look at the screenshots, the majority of those who liked the post, even at first glance doesn’t look like real people.
bots from like-party
Of course, a few examples are not sufficient proof of the phenomenon. The facts that allow clear conclusion is enough. Watch for the following articles to understand the scale of the problem. And before you can read a report about one of the largest botnets on Twitter and its customers.
Chapter 15. Make America Bot Again. Part one
Let's summarize. Heidi`s photo case was not initiated by an anonymous supporter, it was a planned action. Why none of the reporters covering this topic is not investigating the origin of the picture? As the events unfolded:
- Trump bot posted the image.
- pro-Trump botnet imitated its popularity, cheated retweets and likes.
- As a result, the story hit the news, although the people have not noticed it. Well, unless Ted Cruz.
If you remove the media coverage of this story, it would have looked like a skirmish in a locked room with no windows. No one would ever know about it, except two candidates.
If this story was examined properly, its coverage would be totally different, and it would be reflected in the election race.
So we have a great scandal after stuffing information with the black social media technologies.
We understand that if Trump declared himself the author of the picture, it would be too straightforward. It would have looked like a violation of the rules. But repost your supporter is a great way to escape the liability for dirty PR tricks.
Bot’s facts and sad questions
Do you really think it’s not enough bot’s facts and sad questions?
Followers of @don_vito_08