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Did Elon Musk Lay a Trap for Cheating Democrats? 'Some Interesting Lessons to Clean Up...'

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“We don’t make mistakes — we just have happy accidents,” is one of the most iconic quotes from legendary artist Bob Ross.

It’s a quote that might be hitting close to home for new Twitter head honcho Elon Musk, after an innocent little poll may have inadvertently exposed some of Twitter’s most annoying issues — bot and troll accounts, as well as bot farms.

The poll in question was certainly going to be a polarizing one, given that it involved former President Donald Trump:

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“Reinstate former President Trump,” Musk posted on his Twitter account, with just the options for “yes” and “no” available.

As of this writing, over 15 million votes had been cast, with the results showing almost 52 percent in favor of bringing back Trump and 48 percent against.

A heavily anti-Musk troll account made an unverified claim about the pro-Trump vote dropping significantly:

But that claim was enough to warrant a response from Musk (who seemed unaware that @Nomad_1x appears to hate him.)

“Bot & troll armies might be running out of steam soon,” Musk posted. “Some interesting lessons to clean up future polls.”

Of note, Musk did not deny that voting numbers swung heavily against Trump as the poll began picking up traction.

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Whether that anti-Musk troll account meant to or not (another happy accident) it may have actually shed some light on the rampant issues that are plaguing Twitter now — not that they weren’t issues before Musk took over.

Bots, farms and trolls are all very real problems affecting everyday Twitter use. And while it may seem asinine, it’s really not.

Imagine, if you will, Little Timmy browsing Twitter. He sees this Trump poll, with virtually no context. Cheating Democrats could actively affect Little Timmy’s perception of Trump with that. And obviously, it’s not exclusive to Trump. Shaping public perception through social media is a highly effective tactic that can have longstanding consequences.

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Take the January 6 incident, for example. If someone was seeing it for the first time, but the news/information was delivered via a Democrat bot or a Republican bot, wouldn’t they get wildly different interpretations of it?

And to be clear, there are cheaters all across the political spectrum when it comes to abusing and gaming the Twitter ecosystem.

Musk, now armed with at least 15 million users who’ve voted, has a veritable list to dig into the issue of bots and trolls (like Twitter user @Nomad_1x) and start sussing out some of these ongoing issues.

Did he intentionally lay this trap to uncover some of these rampant trolls and bots? Only Musk knows the answer to that.

It is worth pointing out that if you’re casting bait to attract as many trolls and bots as possible, you really can’t do much better than making Trump the main topic. Say what you will about the former president, but he elicits powerful emotions, one way or another.

But whether it was a happy accident or a matter of Musk playing chess instead of checkers, this doesn’t bode well for all the bots who like to cheat the system.

For Twitter users who just want to use the social media app without actively having to worry about engaging with fake and troll accounts? This is a massive win.

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Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than five years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics.
Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than five years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics. He graduated with a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona. He is an avid fan of sports, video games, politics and debate.
Birthplace
Hawaii
Education
Class of 2010 University of Arizona. BEAR DOWN.
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, Korean
Topics of Expertise
Sports, Entertainment, Science/Tech




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