March 30, 2022
They clearly have identified the ‘Chinese lady influencer’ is the way to go.Fmr. FBI Agent Clint Watts on China’s social media influencer strategy — the topic of an Associated Press investigation.
- Watts is the president of Miburo (a consulting firm which analyzes data related to extremism and other security topics). His firm found *at least* 200 social media influencers tied to the Chinese government, operating in around 38 different languages.
- However, it’s not just about Chinese influencers spreading pro-China sentiment. The AP uncovered U.S. social media influencers recruited by firms which are backed by Chinese money.
Why This Matters: “It’s not leaflets and hard copy newspapers anymore,” says one high-ranking Justice Department official. The AP investigation shows how even unassuming influencers may be recruited by the Chinese government in order to spread pro-China or anti-Western sentiment.
How China’s TikTok, Facebook influencers push propaganda
by Jenna Lee,