LikeWar: The Weaponization of Social Media

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Oct 2, 2018 - Political Science - 400 pages
Two defense experts explore the collision of war, politics, and social media, where the most important battles are now only a click away.

Through the weaponization of social media, the internet is changing war and politics, just as war and politics are changing the internet. Terrorists livestream their attacks, “Twitter wars” produce real‐world casualties, and viral misinformation alters not just the result of battles, but the very fate of nations. The result is that war, tech, and politics have blurred into a new kind of battlespace that plays out on our smartphones.

P. W. Singer and Emerson Brooking tackle the mind‐bending questions that arise when war goes online and the online world goes to war. They explore how ISIS copies the Instagram tactics of Taylor Swift, a former World of Warcraft addict foils war crimes thousands of miles away, internet trolls shape elections, and China uses a smartphone app to police the thoughts of 1.4 billion citizens. What can be kept secret in a world of networks? Does social media expose the truth or bury it? And what role do ordinary people now play in international conflicts?

Delving into the web’s darkest corners, we meet the unexpected warriors of social media, such as the rapper turned jihadist PR czar and the Russian hipsters who wage unceasing infowars against the West. Finally, looking to the crucial years ahead, LikeWar outlines a radical new paradigm for understanding and defending against the unprecedented threats of our networked world. 
 
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - superpatron - www.librarything.com

There's not a coherent narrative to this book - much like the social media it describes, it jumps from topic to topic and from timespan to timespan awkwardly. 100+ pages of notes. Read full review

LikeWar: The Weaponization of Social Media

User Review  - www.bookverdict.com

This timely work provides a fascinating and often frightening portrait of the many ways social media is being weaponized and used to manipulate. Singer (Wired for War) and Brooking, a former research ... Read full review

Contents

An Introduction to LikeWar
1
How the Internet Changed the World
24
Social Media and the End of Secrets
53
Censorship Disinformation and the Burial of Truth
83
The Business of Veracity vs Virality
118
The New Wars for Attention and Power
148
The Conflicts That Drive the Web and the World
181
The New Rules and Rulers of LikeWar
218
What Do We Know What Can We Do?
258
Back Matter
274
Back Flap
407
Back Cover
408
Spine
409
Copyright

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About the author (2018)

P. W. SINGER is a strategist at New America, an editor at Popular Science, and the author of several best-selling books, including Wired for War and Ghost Fleet.
EMERSON T. BROOKING is a research fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and has written for the Atlantic, Foreign Policy, and Popular Science.

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