Convicted criminal Silvio Berlusconi returns to Italian politics as a kingmaker

Silvio Berlusconi, a misogynist, racist creep-authoritarian who was caught paying a teenager for sex and then lied to cops to get them to stop investigating the case, is banned from holding public office in Italy thanks to a criminal conviction for fraud; but that hasn't kept Italy's media (a large slice of which he controls) from elevating him to the role of political kingmaker in the country's upcoming elections. Read the rest

Trump denounces Steve Bannon: "When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind."

President Donald Trump has lashed out at Steve Bannon, his former campaign manager and White House strategist, following Bannon's suggestion that a Trump Tower meeting with Russians was "treasonous" and "unpatriotic."

“Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party.” Trump continued, “Now that he is on his own, Steve is learning that winning isn’t as easy as I make it look. Steve had very little to do with our historic victory, which was delivered by the forgotten men and women of this country. Yet Steve had everything to do with the loss of a Senate seat in Alabama held for more than thirty years by Republicans. Steve doesn’t represent my base — he’s only in it for himself.”
Read the rest

Brianna Wu will raise funds for her congressional bid by killing Nazis in a Wolfenstein II playthrough

Frank Wu writes, "US Congressional candidate (MA-8) Brianna Wu (previously) will be killing virtual Nazis today. Brianna will be doing a playthrough of the new video game Wolfenstein II, whose tagline is 'Make America Nazi-free again.' The playthrough starts today at 5 pm Eastern." Read the rest

A quarter of US military "sees white nationalism" in the ranks

A survey by the Military Times found that nearly a quarter of US servicepeople see "white nationalism" among their peers, and believe that the white nationalist agenda is more of a national security threat than "Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan." Read the rest

Black man beaten by Charlottesville Nazis has been charged with assault

DeAndre Harris is a 20 year old black man who was subjected to a vicious armed beat-down by Nazis who marched in Charlottesville on August 12. Two of the men who beat him have been charged with "malicious wounding" and are being held without bail; two others have not been arrested yet. Read the rest

Quiz: Breitbart headline, or KKK newspaper headline from the 1920s?

"“Who is Responsible for the Crime Wave?” “Reporters Cover Up Evidence of Immigration Crime Wave” “One New Immigrant for Every Two U.S. Births” “One Foreigner Enters by Stealth for Every One Who Is Legally Admitted, Immigration Men Say” Read the rest

Creator of Pepe the Frog takes legal aim at the alt right

Fresh off a decisive victory against a man who used Pepe the Frog in an Islamophobic children's book (previously), artist Matt Furie is fighting alt-right stars for unauthorized use of his Pepe the frog character. Read the rest

The juggalos, class struggle, and the left

The juggalos are marching on DC this weekend, to protest the FBI's classification of the music fandom/subculture as a dangerous gang, placing it on a watchlist alongside the Aryan Nation. Read the rest

Domain registrars emerging as the internet's moral enforcers

This week, microblogging platform Gab became the latest canary in a coal mine over the limits of free speech on the internet, acquiescing to their registrar's demand regarding a post deemed obscene. Read the rest

Linguistic data analysis of 3 billion Reddit comments produces a taxonomy of trolls

Tim Squirrell, a researcher at the Alt-Right Open Intelligence Initiative at the University of Amsterdam, used Google's BigQuery to analyze "every Reddit comment ever made—all 3 billion of them." He used the results to identify different alt-right groups and the language they use.

From Quartz:

Focusing on The_Donald, I used a script that lets you see which words are most likely to occur in the same comment. Combining this with a tool that allows you to look at the overlap in commenters between different parts of Reddit, I found that the alt-right isn’t just one voice: It’s made up by distinct constituencies that share different opinions and ways to express them, identifiable by the language they use and the other communities they post in.

In other words, there’s a taxonomy of trolls. So who are they, and what language do they use?

Here are the groups and their favorite words:

4chan shitposters: kek, Pepe, deus vult, tendies, God Emperor Trump

Anti-progressive gamers: SJW, snowflake, pandering, tumblr, feminist, triggering, GamerGate, virtue signalling

Men’s rights activists: females, cuck, bitch, Chad, alpha, beta, omega

Anti-globalists: globalist scum, the establishment, puppets, elites, masters, George Soros, cultural Marxist

White supremacists: Islam, (creeping) Sharia, “deus vult”, “western culture”, various racial slurs

By Anthony Crider - Charlottesville "Unite the Right" Rally, CC BY 2.0, Link Read the rest

The far right has its own web, but what use is a site no-one will serve?

After Charlottesville and the murder of Heather Heyer, hitherto Nazi-friendly internet companies have found their boots and their banhammers. The angry right has for some time anticipated this eventuality, and colonized or established replicas of key services and platforms. 8chan, Voat and Gab are the most well-known examples, respectively resembling 4chan, Reddit and Twitter. Adi Robertson writes that the internet's plumbing, the world of domain name registrars and load mitigation, will be harder to replicate. Why the alt-right can’t build an alt-internet.

Even if such a registrar could ignore bad PR, activists could still lodge complaints with the registries, which ultimately control access to domains. There are ways to bypass ICANN entirely. A site could use an alternative domain name system like Namecoin, for instance. It could advertise a numerical IP address rather than a link. The Daily Stormer set up shop on the free and decentralized Tor network, operating on the so-called dark web. But at that point, you’re not just independent, you’re effectively walled off from the normal internet. ... Far-right sites and services want to be real alternatives to their mainstream counterparts, not just enclaves for true believers.

Whatever is taken from them may also be taken from you. Read the rest

Steve Bannon calls left-wing reporter out of the blue and unloads on alt-right and GOP

Robert Kuttner is a veteran left-wing reporter who writes for the left-leaning American Prospect; while he was on vacation, Steve Bannon's assistant tracked him down and asked him if he'd talk to Bannon. Read the rest

Fox and other conservative sites hastily nuke posts urging vehicular murder of left-wing protesters

Last January, the alt-right website Daily Caller ran a post called "Here's A Reel Of Cars Plowing Through Protesters Trying To Block The Road," in which drivers endangered the lives of protesters while Ludacris's "Move Bitch" played in the background: the post was syndicated to a Fox websites and many other outposts of the right-wing media. Read the rest

So the Alt-Right is coming to your campus

The Southern Poverty Law Center's guide, The Alt-Right on Campus: What Students Need to Know basically advises you to network with everyone on your campus who isn't a closet Nazi, meet with the Young Republicans (or whatever) and remind them that they're inviting Nazis to come speak, and then to throw a big, fun event far from whatever Nazi is addressing your school and starve them of publicity and attention. Read the rest

Quantifying the influence of 4chan's alt-right trolls on normies' discourse

In a proceedings paper presented at a Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence social media conference, a team of British, Italian, and Cypriot academics who worked with a Telefonica researcher presented their work analyzing 8,000,000 comments from 4chan's "politically incorrect" (AKA /pol/) boards, a hive of alt-right racism and hate. Read the rest

Report on media manipulation "from radicalized groups that emerged from internet subcultures"

Danah Boyd from Data & Society writes, "The report examines why the media was vulnerable to manipulation from radicalized groups that have emerged from a variety of internet subcultures. We're seeing an intentional and systematic attack on institutions and information intermediaries and most folks are unaware of the degree to which they are a pawn in others' gameplay. As a result, we are watching good intentions get twisted around and used to harm people, organizations, and democracy." Read the rest

Matt Furie celebrated yesterday's Free Comic Book Day by killing off Pepe the Frog

Spare a thought for poor Matt Furie, a wonderful indie comics creator whose Boys' Club comics featured a lovable frog called Pepe that was adopted by the neofascist movement (the so-called "alt-right") as a symbol for racism, xenophobia, homophobia, transphobia and misogyny. Read the rest

More posts