Report reveals Justice League's 'Snyder Cut' movement boosted by army of bots

Report reveals Justice League’s ‘Snyder Cut’ movement boosted by army of bots

According to a recent exposé by Rolling Stone, a disproportionately high volume of bots and phony accounts appeared to have supported the passionate online campaign that resulted in the release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League.

According to a report by Rolling Stone based on a WarnerMedia-commissioned investigation, “at least 13 percent of the accounts that participated in the conversation about the Snyder Cut were deemed fake, far above the three to five percent that cyber experts say they typically see on any trending topic.”

While that still leaves a significant number of legitimate fans in the mix, it’s long been argued that fake social media accounts and bots can have a loud and significant influence on the opinions and actions of real users, and have been used to interfere with elections

The website, which is thought to be to blame for the #ReleaseTheSnyderCut hashtag getting popular, was also shockingly discovered by one of the companies engaged to look into untruthful conduct inside the “SnyderVerse” group. Alethea Group claims that the domain’s registration may be linked to the proprietor of a long-gone advertising firm that promoted the capacity to drive “cheap, quick Avatar traffic to your website.”

The massive decline in #ReleaseTheSnyderCut hashtag usage after the Snyder Cut was released—from “a million tweets a day” to barely 40,000 tweets almost immediately—was cited as additional evidence by one digital marketing professional, who added, “You don’t see a drop like that naturally.”

We live in a society… of bots

Prior to the March 2021 premiere of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Rolling Stone commissioned cybersecurity and social media intelligence firm Q5id to investigate into any suspicious SnyderVerse-related internet behavior. Becky Wanta, CTO of Q5id, came to the conclusion that “there’s no question that bots were engaged” as a result of this.

Desirae continued, “We observed several trends that bots exhibit in this situation. They arrive in large numbers at roughly the same time. And frequently, just one or two sources may be used to identify the origin of hundreds or even millions of communications. They can occasionally be located on strange servers in far-off nations. Additionally, their content will be same.”

Was Snyder actually involved?

The majority of the “more than 20 people” Rolling Stone spoke to who were involved with both the theatrical and Snyder cuts of Justice League believe that director Zack Snyder worked to “manipulate the ongoing campaign” don’t know for sure whether he personally orchestrated the #ReleaseTheSnyderCut movement. Snyder was even likened by one of the publication’s sources to “Lex Luthor wrecking mayhem.”

Snyder, of course, categorically disputes the charge, but he also suggests that Warner Bros. most likely created its own social media campaign by “trying to use my fan base to augment subscriptions to their new streaming service.”

What’s more perplexing is that no one appears to know who was paying for the effort, which was undoubtedly expensive. Aside from the army of bots, Rolling Stone’s report highlights a number of “expensive publicity stunts” that took place in conjunction with the movement. These included a “towering Times Square ad,” which was said to cost in the neighborhood of $50,000 per day, and “a plane flying over Comic Con with a banner calling for DC to release the Snyder Cut.”

Although we don’t have any answers for the time being, we imagine this isn’t the last we’ve heard of the controversy surrounding Zack Snyder’s Justice League. In the meantime, head over to Rolling Stone to read the full, in depth report

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