Democracy & Elections

The Lawfare Podcast: Information Operations, Then and Now

Jen Patja, Evelyn Douek, Quinta Jurecic, Camille François
Thursday, June 24, 2021, 12:00 PM

Published by The Lawfare Institute
in Cooperation With

This week on Arbiters of Truth, our podcast on our online information ecosystem, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Camille François, the chief innovation officer at Graphika, about a new report released by her team earlier this month on an apparent Russian influence operation aimed at so-called “alt-tech” platforms, like Gab and Parler. A group linked to the Russian Internet Research Agency “troll farm” has been posting far-right memes and content on these platforms over the last year. But how effective has their effort really been? What does the relatively small scale of the operation tell us about how foreign interference has changed in the last four years? Has the media’s—and the public’s—understanding of information operations caught up to that changing picture?

One note: Camille references the “ABC framework” for understanding information operations. That’s referring to a framework she developed where operations can be understood along three vectors: manipulative actors, deceptive behavior and harmful content.

Jen Patja is the editor and producer of The Lawfare Podcast and Rational Security. She currently serves as the Co-Executive Director of Virginia Civics, a nonprofit organization that empowers the next generation of leaders in Virginia by promoting constitutional literacy, critical thinking, and civic engagement. She is the former Deputy Director of the Robert H. Smith Center for the Constitution at James Madison's Montpelier and has been a freelance editor for over 20 years.
Evelyn Douek is an Assistant Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and Senior Research Fellow at the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University. She holds a doctorate from Harvard Law School on the topic of private and public regulation of online speech. Prior to attending HLS, Evelyn was an Associate (clerk) to the Honourable Chief Justice Susan Kiefel of the High Court of Australia. She received her LL.B. from UNSW Sydney, where she was Executive Editor of the UNSW Law Journal.
Quinta Jurecic is a fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution and a senior editor at Lawfare. She previously served as Lawfare's managing editor and as an editorial writer for the Washington Post.
Camille Francois specializes in understanding and mitigating harms emerging from digital technologies, and serves as a Faculty Affiliate at Columbia University's Institute of Global Politics at the School of International and Public Affairs.

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