On social media, our political battles are increasingly automated.
People who head to Twitter to discuss their ideals are, often unwittingly, conversing with legions of bots: accounts preprogrammed to spew the same campaign slogans, insults or conspiracy theories hundreds or thousands of times a day. And one of their most competitive battlegrounds is the prime digital real estate that opens up every time President-elect Donald J. Trump tweets. Any supporters or critics who reply quickly enough to Mr. Trump can see their own tweets showcased right beneath the biggest spectacle on Twitter. But in this fast-draw contest, propaganda bots always best human beings.
Note: This post was originally published on the Political Bots research blog on . It might have been updated since then in its original location. The post gives the views of the author(s), and not necessarily the position of the Oxford Internet Institute.