MusicTechPolicy is reporting that the Google astroturf group “Fight For the Future” is deploying robo call tools against US. Senators. Google is again trying to hack our democracy. Fortunately Scottish anti-astroturf superhero Boaty McBoatFace the is on the case.
We’ve said for years that Google shills use a variety of dodges to create the impression of grass roots support among legislatures–when it really isn’t there. We think this because all of the snakes in the grass roots seem to be online, so rarely offline that it may as well be never.
One of the big dodges is that the shilleries have autodialing tools that allow anyone to call a number and be connected to “their” Member of Parliament, Senator, Representative. That way the location of the person making the call is masked from the person receiving the call. All you need to know is a postal code in the member’s district, state or country and the dialer will connect you.
The assumption is that the calls originate locally in at least the same country, but they don’t. That way a dedicated group of likeminded people anywhere in the world can, as Susan Crawford once said, “geek around the nation state.”
We saw this entire saga play out in Europe over Article 13 where millions of phone calls and emails were lobbed at the Members of the European Parliament, yet less than 1,000 people showed up to protest across all of Europe. Article 13 sailed through its vote as Members of the European Parliament voted down the Google version of the bill–emphatically.
Well…now we are seeing Google shills Fight for the Future pulling the same stunt in the United States. Another “break the Internet” situation being blown out of proportion using Google’s usual scare tactics. A bad look in a post-Cambridge Analytica universe. Here’s how it looks (lobbyists behaving badly):
Boaty demonstrates perfectly the entire scam, and guess what–it works both from Europe to the States and from the States to Europe. And frankly, probably from anywhere to anywhere.
Well…just one thing to say to Mr. McBoatface: Alba gu bràth, laddybuck.