Researchers say fears of election interference on social media were exaggerated

The experts say there was more coverage of trolls than actual evidence of their activities

Researchers have concluded that concerns about election meddling during the recent federal election were exaggerated, as reported by the CBC.

They have stated that there was more talk about foreign trolls during the election campaign than there was actual evidence of their actions.

Three research firms that were responsible for detecting online influence during the campaign reported that they did not find much to worry about.

“We didn’t see high levels of effective disinformation campaigns. We didn’t see evidence of effective bot networks in any of the major platforms. Yet we saw a lot of coverage of these things, Derek Ruths, a professor of computer science at McGill University in Montreal, told the CBC.

The researchers have said that the threat of foreign influence was overhyped, as most of the news stories that reported on misinformation had overstated the results and presented them as being conclusive.

“Fears of foreign and domestic interference were overblown,” Philip Mai, co-director of the Social Media Lab at Ryerson University, told the CBC.

Additionally, researchers who monitored Twitter stated that only one percent of the tweets under the hashtag #cdnpoli were likely bots.

Source: CBC News