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The Meme Justifies the Means: Ms Emily Read

Thursday, 02 May 2019

Russian and Chinese influence operations portend war’s changing character. Technology may enable Sun Tzu’s ideal of victory without fighting. What are the psychological processes that enable influence within ‘political warfare’? Memes in social media newsfeeds are an effective tool for mass manipulation since they are un-attributable and readily created. This ANU study examined American responses to ‘loaded’ content presented as a meme, such as this image. Content was perceived as true or prejudiced depending on whether the content was previously ‘liked’ by an in-group or outgroup political party, demonstrating potent persuasion.

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