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What Happens When the Government Uses Facebook as a Weapon?

This piece profiles Maria Ressa, a Filipina journalist taking on President Rodrigo Duterte’s regime by examining its sophisticated use of social media to crack down on dissent. This work has apparently caused the regime’s bots and supporters to turn their attention to her. Her own detailed primer outlining the techniques she asserts are used by the regime is well worth a read too.

Inside China’s Vast New Experiment in Social Ranking

A look at the new credit scoring tools available in China, made possible by deep integration of services around a small handful of companies, and reaching into almost every part of daily life. As one user succinctly puts it – “If your friends are all high-score people, it’s good for you. If you have some bad-credit people as friends, it’s not nice.”

What Putin Really Wants

A piece looking at Russia’s global influence that seeks to counter the common perception that Vladimir Putin is an all-seeing strategic genius, instead characterising him as a “gambler who won big” with his highly successful electoral meddling.