Daniel Halliday
Dec 29 · Last update 1 mo. ago.
Is Vladislav Surkov responsible for the rise of global misinformation?
Vladislav Surkov is a personal adviser to Vladimir Putin and has been accused of utilising misinformation to undermine freedom of the press and democracy in Russia. But is it the influence of Surkov that has led to the rise of misinformation and fake news outside of Russia also? Have Surkov’s tactics of engineering social confusion, in order to undermine and control the political narrative, become influential elsewhere in the world?
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No – He is one of many
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No, political misinformation has a long history
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Yes, he has played a large role
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No – He is one of many

There are so many examples of misinformation being utilised in current affairs it is impossible to pinpoint one individual for leading to or encouraging the rise of a global pattern of misinformation. In this way Vladislav Surkov is just a symptom of an age of misinformation, or an example of a master fake news proponent. But with evidence of collusion, propaganda and attempts to sway voting globally, security companies and politicians such as Surkov are quickly becoming the main enemies of democracy.

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No, political misinformation has a long history

Political misinformation, or fake news as it has been popularised today, has always been an issue, with evidence of misinformation being utilised politically all the way back until ancient times. But this issue has become a popular talking point today, which stems from misinformation techniques changing with technology, being utilised in different ways and therefore being given new names. Vladislav Surkov isn’t responsible for misinformation then; he is just the end of a long list of politicians to use this underhanded political propaganda tool.

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Yes, he has played a large role

Valdislav Surkov has been accused of masterminding political PR of the Putin regime, utilising media, political parties and social movements to manipulate public opinion generating a theatrical level of misinformation to perpetually bewilder the Russian public. In October 2016 hacked emails of Vladislav Surkov’s office showed evidence of Surkov’s personal input into efforts to destabilise and influence the political landscape in Ukraine. Misinformation has arguably become a popular device in destabilising political narratives around the world, with political regimes that use similar tactics coming into power in countries as diverse as the United States, Brazil, the Philippines and Hungary.

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