Ukraine-Russia War Misinformation on Social Media

Updated: Jun 28


Private citizens have taken on the role of "war journalists" on both sides of the conflict, resulting in a distorted narrative. As Russia continues its invasion of Ukraine, we have witnessed devastating sights and recordings. Some of what we see comes from conventional media, but most of it comes from people posting on social media.


Anyone with a phone may effectively become a war correspondent.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has resulted in a rush of misleading and deceptive content on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and other social media platforms.


In times of crisis, social media platforms constantly battle disinformation and make on-call decisions on whether a viral message should be deleted. However, the flood of conflict-themed content presently on social media has inundated the network in unexpected ways, delivering millions of users bogus imagery packaged as if they were representing the war in Ukraine.


Because of their persuasive power and attention-grabbing character, this imagery is a convenient choice for those aiming to mislead.

Producing, modifying, or spreading inauthentic visual information isn't satire or art; it's frequently driven by politics or personal monetary gain.

Just hours after the first explosions shook Ukraine, big Instagram meme pages began boosting accounts claiming to be that of a journalist live-streaming from the scene. Instagram and other social media profiles are being made to be known as "war pages."


They collect horrifying warfare footage and violent films and repost them on Instagram with little to no context, typically to garner followers by exploiting misery and warfare.

War accounts like @waraholics, @military footage, and @war_strikes have all acquired followers as the Ukraine situation has erupted.


Pictured on the left is the @waraholics Instagram page. In the bio, they attract war enthusiasts and advocate for violence.

Some of these followers are then monetized by posting advertisements frequently for OnlyFans creators.


It's crucial to stop these pages in their tracks. Only real and true information should be distributed regarding such a serious and devastating time like this. People's lives are in danger and it is not ethical for others to find monetary gain from that.


How to spot a fake social media profile displaying false imagery of the Russia-Ukraine War


Some standard techniques used by these scammers are:

  • Using an existing photo or video and saying it was taken at a different time or location.

  • Staged or posed acts or situations and displayed them as genuine. This was the situation with the wrecked cars, which Russia said had been bombed by Ukraine.

  • Using a particular lens or vantage point may also alter the appearance of a scene and can be used to deceive. When compared to an overhead image, a tight shot of individuals, for example, might make it difficult to determine how many people were in a crowd.

  • To take things a step further, Photoshop or similar software may be used to add or remove people or objects from a scene and crop items out of a shot.


 

We support causes with actions, not just words.

At 6° Media, we care about humanity and uphold a high level of ethical standards. 6° Media donated 30% of our March proceeds to humanitarian relief operations for the victims of Ukraine. An estimated 4 million people have fled Ukraine with the United Nations expecting up to 7 million internally displaced individuals and up to 7 million refugees.


If you would like to join us and help those affected by the Russia-Ukraine conflict, check out the following reputable resources to donate to:

  • Airbnb.org. Airbnb's organization is inviting individuals, particularly those in European countries bordering Ukraine, to join up to provide temporary lodging for Ukrainian refugees or to donate to their stays. In addition, the San Francisco-based firm has pledged to house up to 100,000 people leaving Ukraine.

  • Doctors Without Borders. Staff from the medical assistance group are still in Ukraine, "finding methods to react to medical and humanitarian needs as the situation escalates."

  • UNICEF. The global organization dedicated to the protection of children is striving to offer humanitarian supplies to families that are without safe water or power as a result of the fighting.

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