How Memes are Becoming the New Frontier of Information Warfare
April 1, 2020
By Tom Ascott Everyone has seen a meme, whether they know it or not. They’re everywhere on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The most popular ones make it off the Internet and show up in newspapers, television shows or films. You’ve almost certainly seen Pepe the Frog, and if you haven’t seen the classic ‘Woman yelling ...
Christchurch’s Legacy of Fighting Violent Extremism Online Must Go Further – Deep into the Dark Web
March 18, 2020
By Dr. Joe Burton It didn’t take long for a terrorist to show how hard it is to prevent violent extremist content being shared online. Within six months of the attacks at two Christchurch mosques on March 15 last year, which were live streamed on Facebook, a far-right terrorist’s attack at a German synagogue was ...
Chambers of Secrets? Cognitive Echo Chambers and the Role of Social Media in Facilitating Them
October 2, 2019
By Linda Schlegel The rise of social media usage as an everyday activity for millions of citizens has been accompanied by a discussion about the dangers of this development. Echo chambers or “filter bubbles” are often mentioned in this regard.[1] Both concepts refer to the possibility that social media users only engage with content that ...
The Ethics of Engaging Former Extremists to Counter Violent Extremism Online
September 25, 2019
“It is my belief that there is and should be an end to the label, as in my own case […] I am more than what I once was; I am more than a former. Ethically sound CVE practitioners should see me as a person with a future, not just a past.” ~ Brad Galloway By ...
What Does the ‘New Right’ Have to do With the Christchurch Attack? Some Evidence from Twitter on Discursive Overlaps
April 17, 2019
By Reem Ahmed and Daniela Pisoiu In a globalized world, events thousands of miles away have far-reaching effects, mostly through their spectacularism. Oftentimes, these events feel even closer to home when there are ideas and people who might have in one way or another contributed to the facilitation of such atrocities. Right-wing extremism has long ...
The UK Extreme Right on Twitter: Restricting Access to Extremist Content Online
October 18, 2017
By Lorand Bodo In recent years, governments and companies have had to respond to the phenomenon of terrorists and other violent extremists using the Internet, especially social media platforms, to propagate their messages and as a tool for radicalisation. For example, the UK government recently proposed to tighten the law concerning the viewing of violent ...
Terrorist Use of the Internet by the Numbers: Part II – Quantifying Behaviours, Patterns, and Processes Using Closed Sources
March 29, 2017
This post is Part 2 of 3; Part I is HERE. Background Last week’s post—part I of three in this series—presented findings on convicted UK terrorists’ online behaviours from a large scale analysis based on open source data. Follow-up research on the antecedent behaviours, including online activities, of UK-based lone-actor terrorists leading up to their ...
VOX-Pol Newsletter 3(4) November 2016
November 10, 2016
Welcome to Vol. 3 Issue 4 of the VOX-Pol Newsletter. If you have colleagues or friends who may be interested in the content of this newsletter or any events and research carried out by VOX-Pol, please encourage them to subscribe via our website. Follow us on Twitter @VOX_Pol for live updates and releases. Yours sincerely, The VOX-Pol ...
Bridging Computer Sciences and Social Sciences: The Search for Extremist Content Online
October 12, 2016
By Ryan Scrivens There’s been a shift in recent years in how researchers investigate online communities, whether it’s the study of how extremists communicate through social media or analysis of users connecting through online health forums. In particular, scholars who do this work are shifting from manual identification of specific online content to algorithmic techniques ...