Posted: Apr 23, 2022 12:01 AM
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Right now, the fight for control of Ukraine is taking place in the skies above Kyiv and in the streets of Mariupol. However while the conflict between Russian and Ukrainian forces in the sky and on the land has ground to a stalemate, Vladimir Putin and his virtual war machine dedicated to sowing disinformation are decidedly losing the information war. The Russian invasion of Ukraine marks the first major conflict in Europe to take place in the age of social media, an online space that Vladimir Putin has spent decades working to dominate. Over the years, Putin has carefully constructed an enormous virtual apparatus designed to confuse, disorient, and dishearten his opponents, and he’s effectively used deception and disinformation to weaken democracy abroad, all while cementing his own power in Moscow.While Putin has earned a reputation as a master manipulator of the online world, his disinformation efforts in Ukraine have fallen flat, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has flipped the script to use social media to protect democracy against advancing authoritarianism. Zelensky, a performer-turned-politician, has used the virality of platforms like Twitter and his mass following on site …
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