Cambridge Analytica Whistleblower

Discussion in 'world politics, current affairs and news' started by Bernie Gunther, Mar 17, 2018.

  1. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    This is getting interesting:
    Also, he apparently has shown the Guardian some actual evidence of, at least, SCL's Etonian CEO lying to MPs about the Facebook data.
    plus other potentially juicy stuff.
    ‘I created Steve Bannon’s psychological warfare tool’: meet the data war whistleblower

    I suspect the Guardian of personalising this a bit too much, a lot of this tech has been around since this whistleblower kid was in nappies, but he does seem (assuming the Guardian have done their homework) to have been close to the action when it got applied on a major scale in the US (and likely also the UK) rather than on the periphery.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2018
  2. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

  3. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    How Trump Consultants Exploited the Facebook Data of Millions
    StigoftheDig likes this.
  4. spring-peeper

    spring-peeper Well-Known Member

    Yuwipi Woman and CRI like this.
  5. TruXta

    TruXta tired

    Hopefully this will equally shine a light on the political side of FB Corp and by extension your Alphabets etc. No way are they collecting all this data and only using it to sell advertising.
  6. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    Yuwipi Woman likes this.
  7. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    I think it's blowback, same as Watergate was blowback of the CIA's post-war election rigging techniques from the periphery to the core.

    This is blowback of the modern equivalent of those techniques. SCL, Cambridge Analytica's parent organisation is a spook-shop that 'arranges' political outcomes using state of the art information warfare techniques across the developing world.

    Now those techniques are being used to 'arrange' US (and likely UK) political outcomes to suit the interests of far right zillionaires.
  8. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    Last edited: Mar 17, 2018
    Supine likes this.
  9. TruXta

    TruXta tired

    I don't quite see the parallel with Watergate tbh.
    tim likes this.
  10. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    The Watergate burglars were ex-CIA goons working for Nixon's campaign, with experience of interfering in third world political outcomes, who got caught out trying to do the same sort of shit (they were looking for compromising material) in the US.

    SCL are a quasi-spook psyops outfit who arrange political outcomes in the developing world and who are apparently in the process of being exposed as trying to arrange them in the US/UK on behalf of sections of capital and the ideological far right.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2018
  11. TruXta

    TruXta tired

    Still think that's stretching it, but no matter. As for SCL they clearly want to be seen to be scary spooks, but what evidence is there of them ever being successful?
  12. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    I think it's more complicated than just SCL, as that Tow Centre article I linked shows, there are a lot of players in the behavioural microtargeting ecosystem and I'd be incredibly surprised if some of them weren't actual spooks rather than quasi-spook commercial actors. Same with the political hacking stuff. It's really hard to clearly distinguish between spooks, criminals and dodgy 'legitimate' businesses in that space.

    The question about how successful any of this is is an interesting one though. My first thought was that it's obviously played a role in the normalisation of far right ideology in certain social groups, but it'd be interesting to try to make a robust case for that.

    There's a shit-ton of evidence of interactions along those lines in the Tow Centre data and I guess that's the obvious starting point. Linkage between the targeting tech and the flow of far-right memes.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2018
  13. TruXta

    TruXta tired

    SCL have ex mil on their board, so definitely some spooks involved.
  14. pocketscience

    pocketscience Well-Known Member

    Fuck liking any posts on this thread...Let alone replying... The spooks'll be all over it like a rash.
    ... hold on a minute... :hmm:.:facepalm:
  15. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    I am amazed that anyone is surprised by this. It is an intrinsic part of FB's business model to monetise the data under their control and for them to say they didn't know what was going on is more than slightly disingenuous.
    Riklet, Nivag, sealion and 5 others like this.
  16. Sasaferrato

    Sasaferrato Grateful for what I have.

    It is quite simple. If you have doubts about FB etc misusing your data, either, post nothing that you give a damn about, or, close the account.

    Ditto online bullying... shut the account.
    Edward Kelly and tim like this.
  17. Reiabuzz

    Reiabuzz Banned Banned

    Does anyone actually give a shit about this? The guardian appear to be pitching it as Snowden Part Two.
  18. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    Yes folks it's sour grapes time:

    muscovyduck likes this.
  19. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    Well, whatever the Guardian are doing, it provides further insight into and visibility of something that many people might find concerning if they were aware.

    The propaganda manipulation that this data was used for could be plausibly described as the deliberate cultivation of group identity around far-right ideology. Whether that was the explicit primary intent or not, it certainly seems to have been an outcome and it'd be very hard to argue that they didn't know just what they were doing given the hateful content.

    Collating such data lets outfits like SCL do this on behalf of clients by precisely identifying subjects receptive to such messages, so that propaganda can be precisely targeted at forming them into politically serviceable far-right identity groups. This is a very efficient use of political funding, first because it avoids wasted effort and second because once formed such ideological processes are self reinforcing.

    The propaganda can be zeroed in on 'ideal' subjects to get them all stirred up and reinforcing each others' interpretation of reality and on ramping up any ideological conflicts they're involved in by winding up the groups they're being focused on hating.

    Where spooks have deliberately cultivated far right groups for political ends elsewhere in the world the end-game often involves death squads and terrorism. So I think that when capital and technology start converging to do that in the context of our democratic process and that of countries with substantial influence over ours, it's potentially quite a serious problem.
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2018
  20. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    Facebook’s outrage, and that of a lot of people trying to use this for specific political goals, is extremely disingenuous. They were using the platform in _precisely the way it was designed_. They were able to get an awful lot of info but Facebook itself has way more information on people than CA could ever gather and probably has much better analysts too. Trying to tie it into “Russian influence” as some sort of outlier weird behaviour is nonsense - anyone can do this.

    People think I’m being hyperbolic when I say Facebook is a mass surveillance application but it is; that’s how the advertising industry nowadays works. Every ad you see on a website is a little activity tracking bug and the whole of Facebook is an ad platform which knows way more about you than any other. Of course someone you don’t like could use that compiled information, and clearly Facebook doesn’t give a monkeys until it hits primetime because that’s literally their business.
  21. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    Also WhatsApp and Instagram apparently.

    Btw I am aware that Twitter embeds are also trackers.
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  22. Jon-of-arc

    Jon-of-arc Ransom'd, Stoopid & Roofless

    I don't give a damn that facebook knows that I "like" the movie Dead Man's Shoes, the book Matilda, or that I claim to work at the International Office for Treasury Control, but add that stuff up, along with a few other "likes" and they can apparently deduce all kinds of shit about me with a surprisingly high degree of accuracy. I think they can even figure out a fair bit just from your friends "likes", I vaguely remember reading somewhere.

    So the only answer is to not have an account, really.
    CRI likes this.
  23. Bernie Gunther

    Bernie Gunther Fundamentalist Druid

    Thing is, while Facebook is obviously a key player, there’s a massive ecosystem of that shit now, pretty much all of it ethics free and completely amenable to eg stirring fascism.
    Yuwipi Woman and muscovyduck like this.
  24. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    Another thing is that it’s not just your information that’s being harvested for use in terms of you. Everything that’s recorded is being tied into other people; everything that FB people do can connect to you, particularly if they explicitly tag you but that just makes it easier. The data you send may just be some part in a chain which is irrelevant to you or anyone you know. And yes that includes other networks as well.
    CRI likes this.
  25. tommers

    tommers Your disco needs you

    Everything you do and say online is monitored and tracked and we're so fucking primitive that we all fit into a very small number of behavioural types - which makes us all incredibly easy to manipulate.

    But that's not a big deal or anything.

    Enjoy your evening. Buy an Amazon Echo.
    sealion likes this.
  26. TruXta

    TruXta tired

    Alexa only! :mad:
  27. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    This is also why I never indulge in those third-party website things: What is your IQ? What would you look like as a Hollywood star? What would you look like as a man/woman? etc etc etc. They are so very obviously profiling mechanisms, still lots of people i know take part in them. Even so I am guessing that FB probably know a fair bit about me but I also use FB Purity and an ad blocker. No point in giving them an easy ride imo.
    sealion and Jeremiah18.17 like this.
  28. Supine

    Supine Rough Like Badger

    From the current story it seems that your friends using these third party sites is enough for the company to scrape your data too.
    CRI and teqniq like this.
  29. 8115

    8115 Turn left.

    Well as their assertion appears to be that Cambridge Analytica was instrumental in the Leave campaign winning and Trump gaining power then yes I give a shit.
  30. 8115

    8115 Turn left.

    Even though I'm somewhat unsure about Brexit I'm still unhappy about the idea that data mining can be used in this way. I think I'd have issues even with it being used to achieve an outcome I was totally for.

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