Propaganda Watch: Russian Social Media Ads–12/21/19

Russian President Vladimir Putin superimposed into a Russian Flag. Image by Lenny Ghoul.

This is part of an ongoing series where I review some of the ads purchased by the Russians. In doing so I hope we can get a better understanding of what they were trying to do, and how to recognize it the next time we’re faced with propaganda.

If you want to follow along, the ads can all be downloaded here. All of today’s ads can be found in the 2016-q2/2016-05 folder.

Every year, the Westboro Baptist Church protests the high school graduation ceremonies at Lawrence and Free State Kansas. In 2016, the Russian-created group LGBT United organized a counter protest, as seen in p(1)0000124:



The protest was even mentioned on the local calendar for the city of Lawrence, crediting LGBT United with its organization. The Lawrence Journal-World did a piece on their high school being a target for Russian-backed ads. A teacher remembered seeing the ads at the time and feeling skeptical about their legitimacy, even after being contacted via email by one of the group’s representatives.

It’s worth noting that both the ads mention the high school as the location, and the Westboro Baptists also arriving at the school, despite the venue being changed to a different location.

THIS IS AN OPEN THREAD. Take care, and have a fantastic Saturday.

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