Election Disinformation in France
ISD and CASM leveraged Beam to investigate disinformation and misinformation in the months ahead of the April 2022 French presidential elections. During this time, the teams used Beam to collect data and perform various types of social media analysis and network mapping, alongside qualitative monitoring.
The French online election conversation at this time was rife with disinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic, the potential risks of the emerging Omicron variant, as well as controversies around the vaccine pass and other sanitary measures. To better understand the online communities congregating around these topics, the teams utilised Beam to perform a network discovery exercise to hone in on a set of accounts sharing false and misleading information.
After collecting the output from these accounts over the course of a month, which amounted to over 1.7 million social media posts, the team used the link and narrative analysis modules within Beam to identify what types of content was being shared within these spaces with regard to the election. This research provides an overview of the key communities that were actively spreading disinformation and misinformation on social media platforms ahead of the elections, and the dynamics and narratives shaping these communities.