The article discusses the current forms and channels of propaganda in the network space. Despite the fact that the methods and technologies of propaganda in its classic version are described in detail, in recent decades, the methods of propaganda influence have become more disguised and sophisticated: from the creation of bots in social networks to the fabrication of images and newspaper covers. In such circumstances, it is extremely difficult to distinguish between true and false content, so the problem of selecting criteria for propaganda content is of particular importance today.The aim of the study is to identify the features of propaganda content in a digital society. The objectives of the research project include: the definition of 'propaganda content' concept, the forms of its expression, the search for criteria to distinguish propaganda content from other types of information dissemination in social networks.The open materials of such programs as Hamilton 68, Digital Sherlocks, as well as the research of Computational Propaganda Worldwide conducted in Oxford were taken as an object. It is because of these and similar projects that the term 'computer propaganda' is firmly entrenched in the scientific lexicon.The research methodology is based on the works of J. Bolsover, F. Howard, and a number of other foreign and domestic authors, indicating the following formats as components of promotional content in online communities: cyberattacks, bot farms, automatic distribution of posts on social networks, theft of data and disinformation. They are usually distributed simultaneously to maximize the coverage of the same information.The main methods of the study were case studies and content analysis. With their help, the case that caused social tension and long-term negative consequences (pension reform of 2018 in Russia) is considered. The analysis of the text format of information about this case, posted on social networks Facebook and Twitter, led to a number of conclusions: the methods used to identify propaganda content, require further serious study. The method of content analysis widely used for this purpose and the relatively recent method of intent analysis, due to the lack of the necessary methodology, are not always able to determine the availability of methods of propaganda influence.The results of the study allow us to state: computer propaganda in the modern world is very effective, including free or very inexpensive distribution. Moreover, the speed and the maximum number of users outreach by propaganda content become major issues. Today, social networks are a real arena of struggle, and the arsenal of propaganda means of influence is increasing exponentially. In these circumstances, the development of propaganda content identification methods can serve as a guarantor of success in the fight. This aspect is especially important in the long term, as in this way you can beat the competition and build the right communication strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2019 IEEE Communication Strategies in Digital Society Seminar, ComSDS 2019
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781728115849
ISBN (Print)9781728115849
Publication statusPublished - 7 May 2019

Scopus subject areas

  • Marketing
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems and Management
  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Communication
  • Strategy and Management

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