A new study says Russian trolls didn’t sway the 2016 election. Was the threat overhyped?
The Russian trolls were overhyped.
That’s the implication from a new study in Nature Communications, written by a team of six academics who tried to assess whether the Russian government’s Twitter propaganda effort during the 2016 campaign actually changed users’ minds. “We find no evidence of a meaningful relationship between exposure to the Russian foreign influence campaign and changes in attitudes, polarization, or voting behavior,” the authors wrote.
This isn’t a surprise to me — I’ve long believed the Russian troll farms had little impact. But with the afterlife of the Trump-Russia scandal remaining...