“FAKE NEWS”: RESPONDING TO DISINFORMATION IN WESTERN POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS

Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

“FAKE NEWS”: RESPONDING TO DISINFORMATION IN WESTERN POLITICAL CAMPAIGNS

30th November 2017 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

HJS-event-banner-generic-image

In partnership with The Wilfried Martens Centre, The Henry Jackson Society is delighted to invite you to a panel discussion on fake news. 

Fake news and disinformation have topped the agendas of Western policymakers in the last year, especially as a result of the 2016 presidential election in the United States. During that campaign, the Russian government used thousands of fake social media accounts on Twitter, as well as adverts on Facebook, to spread information that furthered its agenda. The Russian government is also believed to have leveraged its so-called “troll army”— individuals paid by the Kremlin to produce and promote fake social media content — to impact messaging around the Brexit referendum. In both campaigns, the intention was intended to affect voting behaviour.

Businesses, governments, and international organisations are increasingly waking up to the importance of tackling fake news and disinformation. However, this is not a simple or straightforward task. Facebook, for example, has begun to use outside fact-checkers to fight against fake news. Yet, a recent study by Yale University found that fact-checking and tagging inaccurate news stories on social media has not been effective. While politicians discuss the problems of fake news and disinformation with increasing regularity, they have found it difficult to come to an agreement on how to tackle the phenomenon.

Given the persistence of the problem, Western policymakers need to provide satisfactory answers to key questions,  namely ‘How to identify fake news and disinformation?’, ‘How to counter them in the open Western media space?’, ‘How to respond to a fake news and disinformation campaign that is organised and directed by a hostile foreign power?’, and ‘Can a fake news and disinformation campaign by a foreign power be considered as an act of aggression?’.

Edward LucasEdward Lucas is a senior editor at The Economist. He has served as a foreign correspondent in Vienna, Prague, Berlin, Moscow and the Baltic States. In addition to authoring The New Cold War, an assessment of Vladimir Putin’s Russia, Mr Lucas is also the author of Deception, which examines east-west espionage operations.

 

Jakub Janda

Jakub Janda is the Deputy Director of the Prague-based European Values think tank, where he heads the Kremlin Watch Programme. He specialises in the steps democratic states take in response to hostile disinformation and influence operations.

 

 

James Carson

James Carson is the head of Social Media at Telegraph Media Group, where he is also responsible for Search Engine Optimisation. He previously worked as a consultant specialising in digital marketing. Mr Carson has written and lectured extensively on the growing prominence of ‘fake news’.

 

 

Roland Freudenstein

Roland Freudenstein is Policy Director at the Wilfred Martens Centre, where he specialises in European integration and international security. He has previously worked for the European Commission, and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation.

 

 

The Wilfried Martens Centre’s participation in this event has been made possible by financial support from the European Parliament. Sole liability rests with the organiser; the European Parliament is not responsible for the activity.

***

EVENT SUMMARY

On the 30th of November 2017, the Henry Jackson Society was delighted to welcome Senior Editor at the Economist Edward Lucas, Deputy Director of the Prague-based European Values think tank Jakub Janda, Head of Social Media at Telegraph Media Group James Carson and Policy Director at the Wilfred Martens Centre Roland Freudenstein. The gentlemen spoke about “Fake News” and responding to disinformation in Western political campaigns. The event was chaired by HJS Research Director Timothy Stafford who made opening remarks and welcomed all the guests and speakers.

Then, the floor was taken by Roland Freudenstein who thanked HJS for cooperation in organising the event and touched on the cyber security situation in the European Union. As somebody who specialises in European integration and international security, Mr. Freudenstein stressed the convergence of interests between the EU and the UK in the cyber security area. His comments were followed by James Carson’s presentation on how the “Fake News” are being spread on social media and internet and the degree of trust that the British population has in it. He touched on the role of the War on Terror, smart phones and social media and how these effectively undermined the trust of the population in the establishment. He argued that the lack of mechanism for internet regulation makes it easy and cheap to spread information online.

Edward Lucas, continued, suggesting that the term “Fake News” was misleading, because it is not a new phenomenon. Journalism in Britain started as politically driven information that subsequently transformed itself into reputable newspapers. It is much more important to focus on Russia’s military tactics, its violation of law, dirty money, and other subversive tools at its disposal, such as information wars. However, Mr. Lucas agreed that technology significantly changed the process of news gathering. Anonymity is something that is difficult to tackle in the new age of Facebook and Word Press. One of the ways of identifying “Fake News” is to look for contact information of the authors and whether the website was properly registered and had an editor-in-chief. He also suggested that the quality of journalism should be defined by the use of practice of apology on behalf of a newspaper. It could also help if social platforms such as Facebook and Twitter could warn users if the information was real.

Jakub Janda continued the discussion, saying that the Central European states did not pay enough attention to Russia when the crisis in Ukraine took place because it was happening far away. As a result, 28% of Chekhs, for example, believe in disinformation, with 30% actually thinking that Ukraine was a fascist state. Mr. Janda explained that Russia was trying to influence opinions of Western public and electorate. As a result, the European public is divided, which affects the prospects for EU membership. That, in turn, affects policy-making in Europe.

The event continued with Q and A session, where the audience asked about the ways in which “Fake News” can be tackled and what that would hold for Western security and freedom of press.

Details

Date:
30th November 2017
Time:
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Event Tags:
, ,

Venue

Millbank Tower
21-24 Millbank
Westminster, SW1P 4RS United Kingdom
+ Google Map

Other

SPEAKER
Edward Lucas, Senior Editor, The Economist; Jakub Janda, Deputy Director, European Values; James Carson, Head of SEO and Social Media, The Telegraph

RELATED EVENTS

How Russia Abuses Interpol – And How To Stop It

25 September @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

It is widely recognised that Russia abuses Interpol. Russia uses the International Criminal Police Organization to harass dissidents, political opponents, … Continued

Ending the Endless War? A New Strategy for Afghanistan

17 September @ 11:30 am - 12:30 pm

The Afghanistan War has now lasted for 17 years, and estimates suggest has cost the US government upwards of $750 … Continued

Under Siege: The Persecution of Minorities in the Middle East

13 September @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

The Middle East remains one of the most tumultuous regions in the world today, with its many ethnic and religious … Continued

UK-US Financial Cooperation After Brexit

13 September @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

The level of cooperation between the United Kingdom and the United States has been described as “unparalleled” among major powers. … Continued

HJS Report Launch: Negotiating the Peace: Diplomacy on the Korean Peninsula

12 September @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

The past 18 months have seen an immense amount of economic, diplomatic, and even military activity relating to the Korean … Continued

Nine Lives: My Time as MI6’s Top Spy Inside Al-Qaeda

11 September @ 6:15 pm - 7:15 pm

As one of al-Qaeda's most respected bomb-makers, Aimen Dean rubbed shoulders with the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks and swore … Continued

Exploding Data: Reclaiming Our Cyber Security in the Digital Age

6 September @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

The most dangerous threat we face today is no longer military, but rather the increasingly pervasive exposure of our personal … Continued

President Trump, the EU and the UK

30 August @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Donald Trump campaigned in 2016 by explicitly rejecting the foreign policy of recent presidents, Democrat and Republican. Perhaps nowhere was … Continued

HOW TO RIG AN ELECTION

23 August @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

To book for our next event, Exploding Data: Reclaiming Our Cyber Security in the Digital Age, press here.   SPEAKERS: Dr … Continued

END OF AN ERA: HOW CHINA’S AUTHORITARIAN REVIVAL IS UNDERMINING ITS RISE

31 July @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

SPEAKER: Professor Carl Minzner, author, End of an Era China’s reform era is ending. Core factors that characterised its political stability, … Continued

COLLAPSE: EUROPE AFTER THE EUROPEAN UNION

24 July @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

SPEAKER: Dr Ian Kearns, author, Collapse: Europe After the European Union Could the European Union collapse in the near future? Following … Continued

IN THE SHADOW OF THE AMIA BOMBING: GLOBAL TERROR AND THE THREAT TODAY

18 July @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

SPEAKERS: His Excellency Renato Carlos Sersale di Cerisano - The Argentine Ambassador to the United Kingdom; Dr. Shimon Samuels - … Continued

RUSSIA’S ASSASSINATIONS ABROAD

17 July @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

SPEAKERS: Marina Litvinenko, activist and campaigner; Luke Harding, Guardian correspondent; and Giles Udy, historian and author During Vladimir Putin’s time in power a … Continued

PESHMERGA: ‘THOSE WHO FACE DEATH’

16 July @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

  SPEAKER: Dr Simon Ross Valentine, author, Peshmerga: 'Those Who Face Death' Before the invasion of northern Iraq by ISIS in … Continued

TRUMP AND TRADE DEFICITS

9 July @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

SPEAKER: Dr Linda Yueh, economist and author As we anticipate the visit of President Donald Trump to the UK, many … Continued

BY MORE THAN PROVIDENCE: GRAND STRATEGY AND AMERICAN POWER IN THE ASIA PACIFIC SINCE 1783

5 July @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

SPEAKERS: Dr Michael Green - Author of By More Than Providence and Senior Vice President for Asia and Japan Chair … Continued

GLOBAL BRITAIN AND INDIA: A NEW ‘SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP’?

3 July @ 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

In the midst of some great changes in the international system, countries have been left with the qaundry of how … Continued

BELLINGCAT, OPEN SOURCE INVESTIGATIONS, AND THE TRUTH ABOUT MH17

2 July @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

SPEAKER: Eliot Higgins, Founder of Bellingcat The destruction of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine in July 2014 shocked the … Continued

ASIAN WATERS: THE STRUGGLE OVER THE ASIA-PACIFIC AND THE STRATEGY OF CHINESE EXPANSION

27 June @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

SPEAKERS: Humphrey Hawksley, author of Asian Waters: The Struggle Over the Asia-Pacific and the Strategy of Chinese Expansion ; Bill Hayton, Associate Fellow … Continued

THE SECRET WORLD: A HISTORY OF INTELLIGENCE

26 June @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

SPEAKER: PROFESSOR CHRISTOPHER ANDREW, Author of The Secret World: A History of Intelligence Partly because of official secrecy, no 20th century … Continued

BETWEEN KIN AND COSMOPOLIS: AN ETHIC OF THE NATION

20 June @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

PROFESSOR NIGEL BIGGAR, Regius Professor of Moral and Pastoral Theology, Oxford University, in conversation with Douglas Murray The nation-state is … Continued

THE ISRAEL-PALESTINIAN PEACE PROCESS: PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE

19 June @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

SPEAKER: EHUD OLMERT, former Prime Minister of Israel It’s been 10 years since the last meaningful peace deal was put … Continued

HORIZON 2020: WHAT WILL THE MIDTERMS TELL US ABOUT THE FUTURE OF U.S. ELECTIONS?

13 June @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Whatever one’s feelings toward the outcome of the 2016 US elections, there can be no doubting the historic impact and … Continued

NATO: EUROPEAN SECURITY AT A TIME OF TRANSATLANTIC UNCERTAINTY

12 June @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

As Britain considers its relationship with Europe, European security has never been more precarious, with Russian revanchism on the rise … Continued

HJS-event-banner-generic-image

HJS REPORT LAUNCH: “DEFENDING EUROPE: ‘GLOBAL BRITAIN’ AND THE FUTURE OF EUROPEAN GEOPOLITICS”

11 June @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

As the United Kingdom leaves the European Union, geopolitics is returning to the European continent. Germany and France are squabbling … Continued

ON TWITTER

HJS



Lost your password?

Not a member? Please click here