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社交媒体的政治力量:当假新闻影响选举

更新时间:2016-11-19 8:15:41 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Fake News on Facebook? In Foreign Elections, That’s Not New.
社交媒体的政治力量:当假新闻影响选举

HONG KONG — Facebook rumors force a well-known politician to publish proof of his heritage. Fake images show a prominent female leader in a hangman’s noose. A politician’s aide decries violent crime with a Facebook photo of a girl’s corpse — an image that turns out to come from another country.

香港——Facebook上的传言迫使一位著名政治人物公开了证明自己身份的证据。在多张伪造的图片中,一位颇有名望的女性领导人被刽子手套上了绞索。一位政界人物的助手利用Facebook上的一张照片——一个女孩的遗体——谴责暴力犯罪,但事后证明,原来这张照片来自其他国家。

Another day on social media for Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump? Think again.

这又是贝拉克·奥巴马、希拉里·克林顿(Hillary Clinton)和唐纳德·J·特朗普(Donald J. Trump)在社交网络上的遭遇?不见得。

Those incidents took place in Indonesia and the Philippines, where social media’s outsize place in politics is widely acknowledged, even as that role is coming under sharper criticism in the United States.

这些事情发生在印度尼西亚和菲律宾。这两个国家的社交媒体在政治中的巨大作用得到了广泛的认可,尽管在美国,这种作用正在遭受更严厉的指责。

Well before last week’s American election threw Facebook’s status as a digital-era news source into the spotlight, leaders, advocacy groups and minorities worldwide have contended with an onslaught of online misinformation and abuse that have had real-world political repercussions. And for years, the social network did little to clamp down on the false news.

上周的美国大选将Facebook作为数字时代消息来源的地位推到了聚光灯下。早在那之前,世界范围内的领导人、倡导团体和少数族裔群体就一直面临大量虚假网络信息和辱骂,它们对真实世界造成了不良政治影响。多年来,社交网络基本上没有抑制虚假信息的举措。

Now Facebook, Google and others have begun to take steps to curb the trend, but some outside the United States say the move is too late.

现在,Facebook、谷歌(Google)其他一些社交媒体已经开始采取措施,意在遏制这一趋势,但美国以外的一些人表示为时已晚。

“They should have done this way earlier,” said Richard Heydarian, a political analyst in the Philippines, one of Facebook’s fastest-growing markets. “We already saw the warning signs of this years ago.”

“它们早该这么做了,”菲律宾政治分析人士理查德·海达里安(Richard Heydarian)说。菲律宾是Facebook增长最快的市场之一。“多年前我们就已经看到令人警惕的迹象。”

On Thursday, President Obama, speaking in Berlin and standing alongside Chancellor Angela Merkel, criticized Facebook and other social media for disseminating fake news. He became so impassioned that at one point he lost track of the question he was answering.

周四,奥巴马总统在德国总理安格拉·默克尔(Angela Merkel)的陪同下在柏林发表讲话时,指责Facebook和其他社交媒体传播假新闻。他情绪激动,以至一度偏离了正在回答的问题。

“If everything seems to be the same and no distinctions are made, then we won’t know what to protect,” Mr. Obama said.

“如果所有东西看上去都一样,不加区分,那我们就无法知道该保护什么,”奥巴马说。

The impact of Facebook and other social media platforms on international elections is difficult to quantify. But Facebook’s global reach — roughly a quarter of the world’s population now has an account — is difficult to deny, political experts and academics say.

Facebook和其他社交媒体平台对国际选举的影响是很难估量的。但政治专家和学者表示,Facebook的全球影响力——现在全球大约四分之一的人拥有Facebook账号——难以否认。

Some governments are pushing back, sometimes with undemocratic consequences. Ms. Merkel has said she is considering plans to force social networks to make public how they rank news online. Some African countries have banned the use of Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter before elections. Indonesia’s government has closed sites that it says promote fake news, though experts say some portals were also targeted for political reasons.

一些政府正在进行反击,有时会造成不民主的后果。默克尔表示正在考虑强迫社交网络公开网络新闻排名方式。一些非洲国家禁止在选举前使用Facebook、WhatsApp和Twitter。印尼政府关闭了多个网站,称它们传播假新闻,但专家称一些门户网站也是因为政治原因而成为目标的。

Facebook said on Thursday that the social network was a place for people to stay informed and that what people saw in their news feed was overwhelmingly authentic. The Silicon Valley company previously denied that it failed to deal with misinformation and said it continues to monitor the social network so that it meets existing standards.

Facebook周四表示,该社交网络是人们获取信息的地方,并称人们在自己的新闻推送中看到的内容绝大部分都是真实的。之前,这家位于硅谷的公司否认自己对虚假信息不作为。该公司表示会继续监控该社交网络,以符合现有标准。

“I think the idea that fake news on Facebook, which is a very small amount of the content, influenced the election in any way — I think is a pretty crazy idea,” Mark Zuckerberg, the company’s chief executive, told a tech conference days after the American presidential election. “Voters make decisions based on their lived experience.”

“我觉得,认为Facebook上的假新闻以某种方式影响了选举是非常疯狂的想法,那些内容的数量非常小,”美国大选结束几天后,该公司首席执行官马克·扎克伯格(Mark Zuckerberg)在一次科技会议上说。“选民会根据生活中的经验作出决定。”

Facebook’s power is often stronger overseas than it is in the United States. In many developing countries with populations new to both democracy and social media, experts said, fake stories can be more widely believed. And in some of these countries, Facebook even offers free smartphone data connections to basic public online services, some news sites and Facebook itself — but limits access to broader sources that could help debunk fake news.

Facebook在国外的影响力通常比在美国更大。专家说,在许多发展中国家,民主和社交媒体对民众来说是新鲜事物,假新闻会更加普遍地被信以为真。在其中一些国家,Facebook甚至免费提供将智能手机数据与基本的公共在线服务机构、部分新闻网站和Facebook自己连接起来的服务,但限制用户接触更广泛的消息来源。后者可能有助于揭穿假新闻。

One such place is the Philippines, where a spokesman for its populist president, Rodrigo Duterte, shared on Facebook an image of a corpse of a young girl believed to have been raped and killed by a drug dealer. Fact checkers later revealed that the photo had come from Brazil. Despite the debunking, proponents of Mr. Duterte’s bloody crackdown on reported drug dealers and addicts still cite the image in his defense, according to political analysts.

菲律宾便是这样一个地方。该国的民粹主义总统罗德里戈·杜特地(Rodrigo Duterte)的发言人在Faebook上分享了一张照片,上面是一名年轻女孩的遗体,据信是被一名毒贩奸杀的。调查人员后来透露,其实这张照片来自巴西。据政治分人士介绍,尽管真相被揭穿,但支持杜特地血腥镇压被举报毒贩和瘾君子的人,依然用这张照片为他辩护。

Tens of thousands of Philippine Facebook users also recently shared a story claiming that NASA had voted Mr. Duterte “the best president in the solar system.” While many commenters on the Facebook post took it as a joke, some appeared to take it seriously. And an image of Leila de Lima, a local lawmaker and a critic of Mr. Duterte, depicted her facing a hangman’s noose.

最近,菲律宾数万名Facebook用户还分享了一则声称美国航空航天局(NASA)评选杜特地为“太阳系最杰出的总统”的新闻。尽管在Facebook上的这篇帖子下面留言的很多人都把它当做笑话,但一些人似乎当真了。此外,在一张图片中,菲律宾议员、对杜特地持批评意见的莱拉·德利马(Leila de Lima)被人套上了绞索。

“Facebook hasn’t led to empowerment of the average citizen, but empowerment of professional propagandists, fringe elements and conspiracy theorists,” said Mr. Heydarian, the Philippines political analyst. “Voices that were lurking in the shadows are now at the center of the public discourse.”

“Facebook并未带来普通公民的赋权,倒是助长了职业政治宣传、边缘分子和阴谋论者的力量,”菲律宾政治分析人士海达里安说。“过去潜伏在阴影中的声音,现在成了公共话语的中心。”

In Indonesia, where Facebook is so popular that some people confuse it with the broader internet, the service has considerable sway.

Facebook在印尼极受欢迎,以至于一些人把它等同为整个互联网。在那里,Facebook拥有相当大的影响力。

When Joko Widodo, Indonesia’s president, was running for office in 2014, he was accused through social media of being a Chinese Christian and a communist — severe criticism in the deeply Islamic country. The Indonesian politician released his marriage certificate to prove he wasn’t Chinese and made a pilgrimage to Mecca just before voting.

在2014年竞选时,印尼总统佐科·威多多(Joko Widodo)在社交媒体上被指是一名华裔基督徒和共产主义者。在一个伊斯兰教深入人心的国家,这是颇为严厉的抨击。为了证明自己不是华裔,这位印尼政治人物公开了自己的结婚证书,还在大选前夕前往麦加朝圣。

“The fake news had a very big impact in our campaign,” said Tubagus Ramadhan, who helped Mr. Widodo run his social media campaign during the election.

“假新闻对我们的竞选影响非常大,”在选举期间帮助威多多管理社交媒体活动的图巴古斯·拉马丹(Tubagus Ramadhan)说。

Even in long-established democracies like Germany, Spain and Italy, false news reports and hate speech on social media have whipped up grass-roots populist movements, which have often targeted the recent influx of Middle Eastern refugees, to garner wider electoral support.

即便是在德国、西班牙和意大利等历史悠久的民主国家,社交媒体上的虚假新闻报道和仇恨言论也在煽动草根阶层的民粹主义运动。它们常将目标对准最近大量涌入的中东难民,以在选举中获得更广泛的支持。

Now, many European politicians are questioning what role social media has had in deciding what voters can and cannot see. They also have forced social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Google to sign up for voluntary — so far — standards to police hate speech online.

现在,很多欧洲政治人物质疑,社交媒体在决定选民能看到和看不到的内容上扮演着什么角色。他们还迫使Facebook、Twitter和谷歌等社交网络签名支持监控网络仇恨言论的标准。相关标准目前属于自愿性质。

In Germany, Ms. Merkel’s push to require American social network companies to publish how they rank news is intended to give voters greater control over what they read online.

在德国,默克尔试图要求美国社交网络公司公布新闻排名方式,以求让选民对自己在网上看到的内容有更大的控制权。

“Algorithms must be more transparent,” Ms. Merkel has said, “so that interested citizens are also aware of what actually happens with their own media behavior and that of others.”

“算法必须更加透明,”默克尔说。“这样相关的公民也会对自己和其他人的媒介行为有更清楚的意识。”

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