An anonymous commenter from the previous post draws our attention to an exciting new development in right-wing propaganda:
Pro-Israel lobby targets BBC online poll
BBC History Magazine was forced to remove an online poll after it was targeted by a project aimed at influencing internet opinion in Israel's favour.
The Give Israel Your United Support (GIYUS) website hosts a downloadable desktop tool called Megaphone. The program alerts users to opinion polls and "talkback" features on news sites so they can respond with pro-Israel views. In turn, users can alert GIYUS operators to any opinion polls they think should be targeted.
So is this a big deal? Well, I would think it's, at the very least, a little deal.
Recall if you will the teeth-grinding outrage from the Right over the photoshopped images from Lebanon, allegedly showing more damage than there really was in some situations. The reason for the outrage was fairly clear -- that sort of dishonest manipulation is used for precisely one reason: to unfairly sway public opinion in a way that doesn't mirror actual reality. Which, if you think about it, is precisely the intent when you "freep" an online poll, isn't it? The entire rationale for something like that is to misrepresent the legitimate state of things. Isn't that special?
So is this poll manipulation comparably repugnant to digital dishonesty? Probably not. After all, we all understand that online polls are worth pretty much the pixels they're displayed with. However, given the howling anger from the wankersphere over the earlier photoshopped images, one would think that this kind of manipulation should make those same folks feel at least a little uncomfortable for exactly the same reason.
Sure, that'll happen. Right after my hot tub date with Jessica Alba, that'll happen.