CNN says Pokémon Go used by extensive Russian-linked meddling effort

I don't want to mince words here, so I'm going to share the first couple blurbs from the CNN feature.

Russian efforts to meddle in American politics did not end at Facebook and Twitter. A CNN investigation of a Russian-linked account shows its tentacles extended to YouTube, Tumblr and even Pokémon Go. One Russian-linked campaign posing as part of the Black Lives Matter movement used Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr and Pokémon Go and even contacted some reporters in an effort to exploit racial tensions and sow discord among Americans, CNN has learned.

Here on GN I try to stay far outside of the religion and politics discussions, but sometimes there's things that draw us in. This is definitely one of those things. I've linked to the full feature to let you read/discuss the matter as you see fit. Thanks to Mr_Raccoon for the heads up.

Categories: Top Stories, Mobile
Tags: pokemon, mobile


Top Rated Comment
Thu Oct 12 17 04:19pm
Rating: 8

Pokemon go influenced me to vote for Trump.

10 foot poles....get your 10 foot poles here!

Sounds like CNN hired some hack writers.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:06pm
Rating: 2

Of course some people will discount the truth and ignore the facts, but it’ll all eventually come out. The truth will set our country free and then we can heal and unite.

Where's the facts on this one btw? I tend not to take everything a news network says as absolute truth. I'm sure other people would appreciate the facts over a headline here too. Help us out.

Thu Oct 12 17 06:17pm
Rating: 6 (Updated 3 times)

"Where's the facts on this one btw?"

-Facebook says there were a bunch of group pages that were started by and trace back to a Russian state organization called the Internet Research Agency, which Facebook is scheduled to testify before Congress about.

-Also according to Facebook, one of those groups was one called 'Don't Shoot Us', which looking it up, was sort of a knock-off Black Lives Matter thing. The group linked to a webpage called http://donotshoot.us, which is registered to a man who does not exist and seems not to have had any updates since November of last year. That links to several social media accounts at the bottom. (The Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts are banned.)

-Their page has since removed it (the tumblr account has since rebranded as a pro-Palestine page), but from reblogs at the time we can see that the Don't Shoot Us tumblr put on a Police-Violence-themed Pokemon Go contest in July of last year. The 'promotion' looked like this:

It's dumb as hell but all independently verifiable.

Thanks for me and anyone else too burnt out on Russia accusations to cross check stuff.
I guess "Russia" and "hack" automatically makes you think it's a political thing but I guess thisnwas just an independent scam.

Fri Oct 13 17 11:37am
Rating: 1

I said the truth will all come out. I’m a facts guy, too. One way or another, we’ll get to the bottom of this mess and I’ll trust in wherever the facts go.

My point is that regardless of what the truth is, things are so polarized in this country that half the population will just plug their ears. That’s a problem.

That all said, I’m willing to put a good amount of trust into the 4th estate. The first thing autocrats (or foreign autocrats trying to exert their influence on a western democracy) do to try and tear down democracy is work to undermine the free press and sow distrust in our institutions and discord among its people.

I definitely appreciate the exchange of ideas, but this is probably not the best place to talk this kind of stuff. Whether we agree, disagree, or fall somewhere in between, it really doesn’t matter. As an American, I don’t have to agree with what you “say” to believe in and fight for your right to “say” it.

It's ok. Somone cleared it up.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:17pm
Rating: 1

Buuuut... How exactly? Not like catching a Lugia changed your vote or convinced others you're racist.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:58pm
(Updated 1 time)

A Facebook group made from a Russian location basically told people to go to gyms near places where Police injured or killed someone, capture the gym, and make the lead pokemon share the name of the person that the Police attacked at that location and you'd get a "totally free not scammy" $100 Amazon Gift card if you sent a picture of you doing so to the page.

Of course, they couldn't seem to find anyone who actually bothered to go and do what was instructed, making the whole attempt a big failure on the influencers' part that really wasn't much of a success at all.

Does their nationality matter then?

To be blunt, no. The only reason their location is being used for this news story as it's linked to other pages from the same location that the average facebook user has interacted with. Their thing with Pokemon Go just didn't really do much at all so in all honesty, they probably didn't even need to put this in the same category.

Wouldn't that be more inline with using FB than it is with PokeGO?

Yes, it would. That's kinda why I find it a bit odd that they're putting a lot of focus on Go when it barely did anything except get used in a strange scheme.

Fri Oct 13 17 11:51am
Rating: 1

It’s all part of foreign active measures to create chaos, hatred, and confusion among citizens of western democracy. Russia targeted everything from eBay stores to mobile games. Along with social media bot farms, propaganda ads, and a massive disinformation war, they amplified fringe messages on both sides of the political spectrum to make sure we are all at each other’s throats.

So that’s what they did here. They used social media and a hugely popular game to amplify one message while simultaneously using it to enrage those in opposition whose message they are also amplifying. What it results in is a lot of screaming and throwing verbal hand grenades from our own corners, but no actual talking, thoughtful debate, or peaceful discourse (you know the actual “American” and “democratic” way of solving problems.)

These psy-ops happened in the UK, they happened in France and Germany (but the French handled it perfectly.) And it’s still happening today, both in the US and abroad. Welcome to the information war.

I figured a bunch of that was happening. Been called a nazi more times in 2016 than the entirety of the rest of my life. Figured it was high time to close the FB unless I am marketing something.

Yup! Not a bad plan, my friend! I stopped using social media as well.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:19pm
Rating: 8

Pokemon go influenced me to vote for Trump.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:32pm
Rating: 1

Well, I see somebody go their stretch in before going out for a nice Pokehunt.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:44pm
Rating: 1

Some Russian wrote Hillary’s jokes. “Pokémon Go to the polls”.

Thu Oct 12 17 04:55pm
Rating: 1 (Updated 2 times)

It seems to have not been very effective, compared to some of the other things that have been dug up that I know for a fact swayed a lot of my grandparents' friends into voting for the not nice Meme Man. Still, just goes to show that people will use anything that's popular for their own gain, even if it ends up failing. And such is the reason I stay far far away from Politics 100% if I can, as It's already divided my family pretty badly and I just want to stay out of it and have nothing to do with anything my grandparents want me to do.

not been very effective

Dammit! Is that a Pokemon pun?! :p

Thu Oct 12 17 05:26pm
Rating: 3

The Russian government paying people to go on social media and spam obnoxious political memes is evidence that modern geopolitics is way dumber than anything Kojima ever envisioned, and for reference he had a plotpoint involving a dude hypnotizing himself into thinking his robotic arm was a ghost.

Thu Oct 12 17 07:42pm
Rating: 6

Lolol. They are never going to get over that Clinton lost because she was a terrible candidate. And they're desperate to find something that links something to Russia.

The narrative keeps changing. Going from "They hacked the polls" to "They influenced people!".

All non-sense and no evidence. They keep claiming but refuse to show us what they're seeing.

Trump is going to win again in 2020 of they keep up and don't reflect on themselves.

Maybe stop calling people racist, sexist, bigot, homophobes etc. if they disagree with you? That's a start.

We call them those things because they are though.

Fri Oct 13 17 12:04pm
Rating: 1

You tried Mr. Turtle, but some people just like to keep their heads in the sand instead of facing the truth.

“I can’t defend what’s going on, so I’ll pretend that an ongoing investigation that has now assembled the best prosecutorial team in history but hasn’t released its findings yet is all just fake because we know from Law & Order that these investigation things wrap up in a half an episode. So since they investigated for longer than 30 minutes this is a fake-news nothing burger and I’m not even going to reserve judgment until it wraps. Oh also Hillary! And Obama!”

Sat Oct 14 17 11:35pm
(Updated 1 time)

...Are you talking to me? Or did you mean to respond to the other turtle?

I was responding to you (and thought I was taking your side....) haha

Oh I see now, I read it wrong the first time. Sorry!

yeah , maybe avoid when the link is just .

anyway, once again fascism straight to you brought to you by the billionaire club, all countries all day everyday; so many thanks twitter facebook.

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