Facebook, Trump and the snake oil

What Mark Zuckerberg thinks of Donald Trump is not known. He is said to have congratulated the US President at a private dinner that he was “number 1 on Facebook”. That at any rate claims Trump himself – which, however, after counting of the Washington Post for more than 15,000 lies and misleading claims has brought into the world since he took office.

Andrew Bosworth was responsible for Facebook’s advertising business during the 2016 US election. 
Today he heads the virtual and augmented reality division.
 (Photo: AFP)

Whether the Facebook boss Trump wants a second term remains secret. It has now become known that one of Zuckerberg’s most essential employees longs for a democratic president. As a convinced liberal, he sees himself “desperate” trying to do everything we can to prevent Trump writes Facebook Manager Andrew Bosworth in an internal memo that the New York Times leaked and later spread by Bosworth itself. But he warns his employees: they should never use the tools at their disposal to influence the outcome of the election. “Otherwise, we will become what we fear.”

Bosworth’s “Thoughts for 2020” were only intended for Facebook employees. Now they are public and offer a rare insight into the minds of a person who has a significant influence on Facebook’s decisions.

Bosworth was responsible for Facebook’s advertising business during the 2016 US election. Today he heads the virtual and augmented reality division. He is considered a close confidant of Zuckerberg; his word has weight. It is, therefore worth taking a closer look at the leaked memo – from self-criticism to media criticism to praise for Trump’s strategy.

Why Trump Won

“I’m not a Trump fan,” Bosworth writes. He donated the maximum possible amount to Hillary Clinton. Still, one has to recognize the “incredible work” that Trump and his campaign manager Brad Parscale would have done. “He was chosen because he had the best digital ad strategy I’ve ever seen.” Trump won not because he disseminated false information, but because he used Facebook’s tools as best as possible.

Analysis: Bosworth’s claim can hardly be verified without having access to Facebook’s internal data. However, it is undisputed that Trump invested a lot of money in his digital strategy and especially his Facebook campaign in 2016. He relies on emotional speech and advertisements that should make Clinton look as bad as possible – even with false claims.

A current example shows Trump’s strategy: in the past few days, he has placed hundreds of advertisements boasting of killing the Iranian general Qassem Soleimani. “Thanks to our leader’s decisive action, he is no longer a threat to the United States,” Trump advertises. In the past 30 days alone, Trump has spent $ 2.3 million on Facebook ads. That is significantly more than all democratic presidential applicants invest

What role Russia and “fake news” played

Most media misrepresented Russian influence on the outcome of the election, Bosworth believes. Russia had tried to manipulate voters, but campaigning on Facebook was not the main factor. “100,000 advertising dollars can be a powerful tool, but you can’t buy a US election for that,” Bosworth writes. “Especially not if the candidates themselves invest a multiple of this amount.” Foreign propaganda can never be prevented entirely, but Facebook has made significant progress.

In any case, there was a lot of confusion in the public discussion. The majority of the false information that was circulating on Facebook was not politically but economically motivated. The company should have punished Facebook pages earlier and more consistently, which lured users with fictitious messages on websites full of advertising.

Analysis: Bosworth is not alone in this opinion. Facebook’s former security chief Alex Stamos, who now teaches at Stanford and sometimes criticizes his ex-employer drastically, agrees with Bosworth. Much has been written about Russian trolls, with no evidence of the effectiveness of the propaganda they spread.

Why Cambridge Analytica is overrated

For a few days now, the dubious data company has been in the headlines again because new documents have been published. They are designed to show that Cambridge Analytica manipulated not only the 2016 US election but polls around the world. Bosworth considers the excitement to be exaggerated: “In fact, Cambridge Analytica is a total non-event,” he writes. “They sold snake oil. Their tools didn’t work. All they said about themselves is nonsense.” “Snake oil” with allegedly magical abilities sold to fraudsters in the 19th century, today the term stands for expensive but ineffective software in the IT scene.

Almost all details about Cambridge Analytica that were publicly discussed are wrong. “But can we just ignore the press?” Asks Bosworth. “No!” Facebook had made it too easy for the company to access user data. The careless handling of sensitive information justifies criticism of Facebook.

Analysis: The horror story about “microtargeting”, “psychometry” and other dodgy methods with which Cambridge Analytica is said to have had a massive influence on voters has been going on for far too long. A large part of the claims come from the PR documents of the now insolvent company. There are many reasons why Trump won the election – Cambridge Analytica is undoubtedly not the most important one.

How Facebook should deal with politicians

BARCELONA, SPAIN – FEBRUARY 21: Founder and CEO of Facebook Mark Zuckerber gives his speach during the presentation of the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and Samsung Galaxy S7 edge on February 21, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Facebook works with external fact-checkers who can annotate posts if they contain false claims. However, this does not apply to politicians. Anyone who runs for political office can say almost everything on Facebook without being contradicted. In contrast to companies such as Twitter and Google, Facebook doesn’t even make any exceptions for advertisements: politicians can pay for lies to find a broader audience.

The media often suspect economic motives for this. As the former head of Facebook’s advertising business, he “can say with certainty in this case that the critics are wrong,” wrote Bosworth. Regulating political advertising is not about money.

Analysis: Here, Bosworth is entirely in line with his boss. Zuckerberg has been stressing for months that Facebook shouldn’t decide lies and truth, least of all among politicians. However, not all employees share this view. The New York Times, according to dozens of employees contradicted in the comments under Bosworth’s post after his text had shared on an internal network. In their opinion, the same rules should apply to politicians as to all other users.

All power to the shameless

Bosworth sees the greatest danger in Facebook’s use of his ability to exert political influence, and at the same time admits: “Is Facebook responsible for Trump being elected,” Bosworth asks at one point in his memo. “I think the answer is yes.”

The largest communication platform in the world has given power out of hand – to the politician who most shamelessly focuses his digital election campaign on emotions, insinuations and personal attacks.

How fake news about the new corona virus spread in social media

With the daily news reports about the spread of the disease and the increasing deaths, users consciously and unconsciously spread false stories and crude theories about the virus. We’ve put together some of the most shared fake news.

In Beijing, a resident wears a protective cape and gas mask against the coronavirus. News of the virus is spreading rapidly.

Kevin Frayer / Getty

While more than 177 people have already died from the coronavirus and the number of confirmed infections worldwide has risen to over 7,500, government agencies are warning of false reports about the coronavirus that are spreading on social networks. The Ministry of Health in Malaysia now wants to publish a list of stories that have been exposed as false. Singapore is applying its controversial fake news law to stop illegal claims. 

Internet users who consciously or subconsciously share fake news include conspiracy theorists who use the flood of communication to spread their crude theories. The majority of these false reports are spreading rapidly via social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and Youtube. To these platforms come dubious websites and blogs that want to generate reach with fake news and often follow an agenda.

Commonly reported hoaxes and theories related to the coronavirus:

Someone has long patented the coronavirus

Google Patent Search has multiple entries for patents on a coronavirus. Conspiracy theorists conclude that the virus was produced in a laboratory years ago and has now been released to trigger a pandemic. What is true: there are several patent numbers on coronaviruses that are publicly available. Like the debunking website, Mimikama coronaviruses are a family of viruses that include the Sars and Mers pathogens and several viruses that cause animal diseases. The assumption that there is only one coronavirus is therefore incorrect. A weakened version of a coronavirus has also been patented. The patent also shows that these weakened viruses are used, among other things, for vaccines to tune the immune system in this way to infections. The current virus released in China is called 2019-nCoV. There is currently no vaccination against it.

The patent is spread on Facebook. 
The platform has exposed the post as fake news.
Facebook

The false conclusion based on the patent has been circulated, among other things, in Facebook groups of vaccination opponents who claim that the U.S. government is behind the virus to force more people to be vaccinated. Facebook works with independent fact-checkers and has such posts checked. Anyone who calls up such posts also receives a warning that this is a false report.

Bill Gates and a U.S. agency are behind the coronavirus

Also based on anti-vaccinee circles and supporters of the so-called QAnon movement, a right-wing conspiracy group from the United States, the rumour has spread that the billionaire Bill Gates is behind the coronavirus. This conspiracy theory is also related to the patent mentioned above. This was registered in 2015 by the Pirbright Institute based in England. This specializes in viral diseases. QAnon supporters refer to the fact that the institute works with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which supports disease control worldwide.

In addition to the Gates Foundation, the English research institute is also supported by the World Health Organization and the European Commission. Bill Gates is regularly targeted by conspiracy theorists, especially when it comes to vaccination theories. So he was “exposed” for the zika virus as a suspected cause. A spokesman for the Pirbright Institute also said that Gates had nothing to do with the 2015 patent. The Bill Gates theory was spread, among other things, by the right fake news site Infowars.com.

viral Facebook post also circulated, in which the U.S. health agency CDC is held responsible for the virus. The authority also applied for a virus patent in 2004. Some Internet users conclude that the government has an interest in spreading the virus worldwide.

Fireworks, garlic and salt as an “antidote.”

Some bizarre popular wisdom was circulating on Chinese social networks about how to protect yourself from infection or even cure yourself. For example, a post on the popular Weibo platform claimed that fireworks or cigarette smoke disinfected the air. The netizens had shared the job so often that the censors now took it off the platforms and the state media refuted the myth with facts. Some self-proclaimed healers also suggested dripping sesame oil into their nostrils or eating raw garlic to avoid contracting the new lung disease.

Other contents on Facebook, Twitter, and Weibo are asking readers to rinse their mouths with a saline solution that would kill the virus, citing a leading Sars expert from China. At the request of AFP, the WHO said there was no scientific evidence for this. Facebook has now signalled the post as false information.

How can you protect yourself against infection? The WHO recommends washing your hands regularly with soap or disinfecting them and keeping your distance from people who cough or have a fever. If markets are visited, one should avoid contact with live animals. In general, you should cook your food well, especially animal products.

Disinformation and scaremongering

As the Buzzfeednews portal has already listed, several incorrect information about the virus is spreading on social networks. Especially when it comes to the names of fatalities and infections, dubious sides mention incredibly high amounts of cases to stir up panic. At times there was talk of more than 100,000 deaths. This number is wrong. According to Tuesday’s official figures, at least 177 deaths have been confirmed in China.

Users distribute photos and videos that are taken out of context and share fabricated claims, for example, that sick people in China would tip over on the street or that there is a healing method that the government deliberately withholds. The origin of many of these fake news can be found on imageboards such as 9Gag and 4chan. However, China’s state media has already spread a picture of an alleged hospital that turned out to be wrong. The big tech groups Facebook, Google and Twitter, are currently facing the challenge of preventing the spread of fake news.

Facebook now shows where it gets information about you

Do you know how many websites share data with Facebook? A new tool highlights the connections between the network and other services.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks about “News Tab” at the Paley Center, Friday, Oct. 25, 2019 in New York. The new feature in the Facebook mobile app will display headlines ? and nothing else ? from the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, BuzzFeed News, Business Insider, NBC, USA Today and the Los Angeles Times, among others.(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Facebook boss Zuckerberg: The network announces that privacy will be more critical in the new decade

Facebook has now released a new function called “Activities outside of Facebook” in Germany. It gives users of the social network and overview of which apps and websites they use and how often they share data with Facebook. Many users should be surprised by the information displayed: Often, there will be dozens or even hundreds of services that provide Facebook with news that the company then uses, for example, to personalize advertisements. Activities from the last 180 days are displayed.

Regardless of this feature, users should be encouraged to check their privacy settings when opening the Facebook app in the next few weeks, Mark Zuckerberg announced on Tuesday. According to Facebook’s founder and boss, the so-called “privacy check” was revised. In his blog post, Zuckerberg also presented a third function called “Login Notifications”, which is intended to provide more transparency when using Facebook log-ins for third-party services.

“Activities outside of Facebook” is by far the most exciting announcement. The network initially only introduced the possibility for users to get an idea of ​​how much information other web services transmit to Facebook in August for a few countries such as Ireland, Spain and South Korea.

Many websites use Facebook tools

Facebook receives various information about user activity from companies and organizations. Such data transfers occur, for example, when third-party services offer to log in with Facebook or when they use so-called Facebook pixels or Facebook’s Software Development Kit (SDK). The latter are tools that many app developers use for analysis purposes.

Facebook itself speaks of so-called “ user interactions” that share third-party services. According to the company, these “interactions” include opening an app, visiting a website, logging into an app via Facebook, viewing content, performing searches or even buying an article.

An example provided by Facebook:

  1. “Tanja buys a pair of shoes online from a clothing store.”
  2. “The store uses our business tools to send us information about Tanja’s activities.”
  3. “We receive information about Tanja’s activities outside of Facebook and save it on her Facebook account. The events are kept as ‘visited the clothing website’ and ‘made a purchase’.”
  4. “Tanja sees an advertisement on Facebook with a 10 per cent discount voucher for her next purchase in the online store.”

Decouple data previously collected from the profile

Facebook assumes that when looking at the statistics that have been prepared for them, users might be wondering who is passing on all of the data about them. “If you don’t recognize some of your activities, it may be because we received them from data service providers or advertising agencies,” it says. “Businesses and organizations may use third-party data providers or advertising agencies to analyze customer interactions in their apps and on their websites.”

The information is not even complete, as Facebook explains: “For technical reasons and reasons of reliability, we do not show all the activities that we were informed about,” says Netzwerk. This includes “information that we received while you weren’t signed in to Facebook, or situations where we can’t check whether you’ve previously used Facebook on a particular device.” The network also writes that other providers are prohibited from sharing confidential information with Facebook.

How to use the function

  • The new function can be called up via this link or the Facebook tab “Settings”. From there, click on “Your Facebook information”, then on “Activities outside of Facebook”. Then go to “Manage your activity outside of Facebook”.
  • The overview page lists the apps and websites that provide Facebook with information. After clicking on a menu item, the exact number of interactions is shown if “20+” is specified.
  • If you want to find out a little more about all the interactions, you can click on “Download your information” on the overview page. You can then have a file compiled with information on the item “Advertisements and companies”. This file, which also contains the times for the individual interactions, can then be downloaded and searched.
  • With the new control tool, users can ensure that information provided by individual providers will no longer be linked to their Facebook profile in the future. To do this, click on one of the logos shown and then on “Deactivate use of future activities recorded by …”.
  • The following setting can also be made for all apps and websites at once, by clicking on “Manage future activities”. A screen later you can deactivate the “Save your future activities” collectively. From now on, information about your activities that Facebook receives from companies and organizations will no longer be linked to your account.
  • Previously collected data can also be decoupled from your own Facebook profile, if not deleted. Collect this via the “Remove history” button on the main page of the function.

“A new form of transparency.”

Facebook’s new tool offers “a new form of transparency and control,” claims Mark Zuckerberg, whose blog post is entitled “With more control over your privacy into the new decade”.

Zuckerberg originally announced a control tool called “Clear History” in spring 2018, with which one should be able to “clean up” or “wash away” data collected outside the online network.

The question of why Facebook collects so much data at all is answered on the informative pages for the new tool, albeit briefly. It says that Facebook uses information about activity outside the network, among other things, to be able to suggest “relevant ads” to users or groups and events that match their interests.

More pixels, more Hertz and what else? We expect these Android smartphone trends in 2020

2020 is coming and with it the next smartphone generation. What developments and trends can we expect next year?

The first trends for 2020 smartphones are emerging. With its Snapdragon 865, Qualcomm has announced the SoC that will fire most high-end devices in 2020. The processor will be the first from the manufacturer to have a 5G modem set aside, which means that all smartphones equipped with the chip automatically support 5G.

5G also for mid-range smartphones

Qualcomm’s 2020 Snapdragon 865 and other SoC are 5G ready. (Photo: Qualcomm)

2020 will be the official starting signal for 5G smartphones, because, in addition to the Snapdragon 865, Qualcomm will make other SoC series 5G-ready, as the chip developer confirmed at Ifa 2019. In addition to the Snapdragon 865, the company has already introduced the Snapdragon 765 (G), which will fire devices in the upper-middle class. In contrast to the 865, the SoC even has a 5G modem onboard.

Not only Qualcomm, but other companies have also presented their first SoC with 5G-on-chip. Huawei’s Kirin 990 5G has been official since September, as has Samsung’s Exynos 980. Besides, the Taiwanese manufacturer Mediatek also wants to play a part in the luxury segment: the Density 1000 comes with an integrated 5G modem. While Qualcomm has already mentioned some partners, Mediatek has not yet commented on any hardware manufacturers.

Camera: More pixels in smartphone cameras

Five cameras – no smartphone manufacturer has installed so many recording units

The new processors not only add more performance – the Snapdragon 865 is expected to grow by about 30 per cent – but also support for camera sensors with up to 200 megapixels. The first models such as the Xiaomi Mi Note 10 Pro (test) have already installed a 108-megapixel sensor, in which the pixel mass is added up by pixel binning, thereby reducing the resolution, but increasing the image quality. This method is already used in other smartphones with 40-megapixel sensors such as Huawei’s P30 Pro (test) or Mate 30 Pro.

In contrast to the “pixel craze” at the beginning of the 2010s, the whole thing works, which is related, among other things, to smart software algorithms and more computing power. In addition to Huawei and Xiaomi, Apple also shows advances in computational photography with its iPhone 11 models and Google with its Pixel smartphones.

Industry leader Samsung will go a step further with its Galaxy S11 in terms of camera skills in the spring and may also use the 108-megapixel sensor developed with Xiaomi. Others will follow.

Smartphone trends 2020: in-display selfie cams for Android smartphones

Xiaomi and other manufacturers such as Oppo will probably use in-display front cameras from 2020

Xiaomi and other manufacturers such as Oppo will probably use in-display front cameras from 2020. (Image: Xiaomi)

There are also exciting developments for the front-facing camera. While 2019 was the year of the hole punch and pop-up cameras, in 2020 the first manufacturers could rely on selfie cams that are installed under the display. Accordingly, there will be neither a display hole nor a sliding mechanism for pulling out the selfie cam – the screen is free from optical interference.

The two manufacturers Oppo and Xiaomi, have already shown the first solutions that should appear in the first devices over the coming months. Samsung already gave the first glimpse of this technology in November 2018 with its New Infinity display; it could take some time to complete.

Smartphone displays with more Hertz

The Oneplus 7T Pro has a 90 Hertz display. 
In 2020, other manufacturers are likely to rely on this trend. 

The Oneplus 7T Pro has a 90 Hertz display. In 2020, other manufacturers are likely to rely on this trend. (Photo: t3n)

For Apple, it’s called ProMotion, for Google Smooth Display and Oneplus Fluid Display – we’re talking about screens with a higher (sometimes dynamically varying) refresh rate of 90 to 120 Hertz, with which the system works more fluidly and the interaction with the smartphone is more direct takes place. From 2020, other manufacturers also appear to be using this technology. Both Samsung and Huawei are said to have corresponding plans: The Galaxy S11 and the P40 Pro should each have 120 Hertz screens on board.

If you believe the Taiwanese trade publication Digitimes with a somewhat mixed success rate, Apple’s iPhones are the 2020s with promotional displays provided. Gradually, the 60 Hertz, which is standard for all manufacturers, should be a thing of the past.

More foldable – but not so quickly

Foldable: The new edition of the Motorola Razr comes in 2020. (Image: Motorola)

While there have already been announcements regarding foldable, we expect that other players besides Samsung, Huawei and Motorola will enter the new terrain of foldable smartphones. Nevertheless, the new device category should continue to be used with caution, since manufacturers face even more significant challenges, especially about the display: There is still no reliable protection for the foldable screens, as there is currently no rollable or foldable glass.

Samsung’s next foldable will probably resemble a clamshell phone. (GIF: Samsung)

Of course, to make the device category successful, prices would have to drop massively. Samsung’s Galaxy Fold costs more than two classic high-end smartphones at a rate of over 2,000 euros, Motorola’s new Razr will cost around 1,600 euros at the start of 2020. Also for Huawei Mate X, which is so far only available in China, the equivalent of over 2,000 euros are due. Samsung’s next foldable, which has a similar design to Motorola’s Razr, should not be particularly cheap yet.

  • Galaxy Fold 5G: First impressions of Samsung’s foldable
  • Foldables: Mate X and Galaxy Fold the future of mobile computing?

What else: faster charging and maybe bigger batteries

2020 could also see new developments in the field of cell and charging technologies. Manufacturers are working on faster-charging solutions of up to 100 watts, which means that even larger batteries of 4,000 milliamp hours can be pressure-loaded within 17 minutes.

Smartphone Trend 2020: Fast wireless charging. (Image: Xiaomi)

We can also expect the charging power to increase wirelessly: Xiaomi had already announced a wireless 30-watt charging solution in September 2019, with which a 4,000 mAh battery can be fully charged in about half an hour. For comparison: Most Qi wireless charging stations support 7.5 to a maximum of 15 watts. Xiaomi claims that it is even testing wireless fast charging with 40 watts.

Besides, manufacturers could finally install more substantial batteries, which is not necessarily at the expense of weight or smartphone dimensions. Rumour has it that Huawei is working on graphene batteries, which could increase the battery capacity to 5,500 mAh but could reduce the volume of the battery to 70 per cent of a lithium-ion battery. This technology should already be used in the Huawei P40. Samsung could not use graphene batteries until 2021.

Why the Iranian government is following Instagrammer

Four Instagram stars were arrested earlier this year. What that means for the young protest in Iran.

Influencer Sahar Tabar (22) and dancer Sahra Afsharian (26) were arrested for “immoral behavior”

A young woman shuffles across the floor with her new sneakers, tank top and platinum blonde hair to electronic music. It is not clear whether she is dancing on a roof or in a courtyard. After a few seconds, she holds a poster in the camera: a poster by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. The face of the young woman cannot be seen on the video, but it is probably the 26-year-old dancer Sahra Afsharian. Afsharian was arrested after the video was released last week. Your account, which had over 95,000 followers, was set up privately.

Arrested for posting on Instagram – the dancer is not an isolated case. Iran has estimated to have arrested several dozen Instagrammers in 2019, reports Jasmin Ramsey. She is the communications director of the Center for Human Rights in Iran based in New York (“Center for Human Rights in Iran”). This independent organization, with the help of whistleblowers in Iran, reports on human rights violations in the country. It is located abroad because civil law NGOs are not allowed to work freely in Iran. Four arrests of female Instagramers have been reported in the past week. Among them are two other dancers and the influencer Sahar Tabar, who became known for her grotesque pictures on Instagram as “Zombie Version” by Angelina Jolie.

According to the “Center for Human Rights in Iran”, athletes, actors and models were also summoned by the Iranian authorities, and some were charged. To protect those affected, Jasmin Ramsey may not disclose any names or other information. Kickboxer Shabnam Shahrokhi explains on Instagram that she posts less because “being sincere can be viewed as a crime that results in a three-month to the two-year sentence”.

Women took off their headscarves on the street, took photos and filmed themselves

The arrests are justified with “immoral behavior” that violates Sharia law. The term “Sharia” includes all moral and moral codes, such as the prohibition of alcohol consumption and public dancing. Women also have to wear headscarves and are not allowed to sing publicly. Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, Iran has been an Islamic state of God according to the constitution and has the Sharia as the sole source of jurisprudence.

The recent arrests and the government’s repressive stance are “a way to put pressure on and scare young people,” says women’s activist Masih Alinejad on the phone. She lived in exile in the USA and founded the protest movements “white Wednesday” and “secret freedom” in 2014, She posted old pictures of herself on Facebook, in which she takes off her headscarf at various locations in Iran. Alinejad asked if other women also had such views and triggered a feminist wave. Women took off their hijabs on the street, took photos and films, and then uploaded the videos to social networks. Through these protests, Masih Alinejad has now gained three million followers on Instagram, more than the Iranian president.

What young people have previously done behind closed doors can now be shown to the public via social media. “Iran’s government wants to impose a stunning lifestyle on the people. But on Instagram, you can see the daily civil disobedience of young people who choose their lifestyle,” said Alinejad. Nowhere is it more evident than on Instagram that social networks are a platform for the rebellion of young Iranians against the regime: while on national television women have only been shown in black body cover for 40 years, young Iranians can be seen on Instagram colours. Hashtags like #DancingIsNotACrime, #WhiteWednesday or #MyCameraIsMyWeapon made the posts increasingly government-critical. And: The whole world can watch

Their success proves that many people in the country want to see a change

“The Iranian government has lost the fight. We only see Iran on the world map. But in truth we have two. One in the official media in the country, one in the social media,” emphasizes Alinejad. Iranian officials recognize the power of social media and want to control it. But every time they force someone to close one account, another pops up. With their success, Instagrammers prove that many people in the country want to see a change.

In addition to the Sharia law, which also prohibits dancing and singing on Instagram, there seems to be another reason for the actions of the Iranian authorities: offended pride. In April, US President Donald Trump classified the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a “terrorist organization”. This guards, among other things, compliance with Sharia law and is considered a moral police in Iran. As part of Trump’s U.S. sanctions, Instagram blocked the accounts of several members of the Revolutionary Guard. Since then, Alinejad says the government has been putting more pressure on Instagramers, especially young women, to demonstrate control. However, the women’s activist believes in a change in the country: “Iran is in a severe crisis.

The U.S.’s maximum pressure on Iran will work in addition to the Sharia law, which also prohibits dancing and singing on Instagram, there seems to be another reason for the actions of the Iranian authorities: offended pride. In April, US President Donald Trump classified the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a “terrorist organization”. This guards, among other things, compliance with Sharia law and is considered a moral police in Iran. In the wake of Trump’s U.S. sanctionsInstagram blocked the accounts of several members of the Revolutionary Guard. Since then, Alinejad says the government has been putting more pressure on Instagramers, especially young women, to demonstrate control. However, the women’s activist believes in a change in the country: “Iran is in a severe crisis. The maximum pressure from the United States on Iran will work, just like the maximum pressure from FIFA on Iran will do: women can now watch the stadiums to watch football.

It is unclear whether this pressure will affect. Facebook, Telegram and Twitter have been banned in recent years. The Iranian government’s conservative and reform-minded forces are currently debating a ban on Instagram. The platform was initially apolitical. Young people took photos and had fun. They ignored the political events. But Instagram has changed. It became the only popular western social media app used by millions of Iranians every day. “The press is talking about a possible war in Iran,” says Masih Alinejad, “but let’s be honest. You don’t wear a headscarf when you are seven? Then you are a criminal. When you dance, you are a criminal. If you go for a walk with a dog, you are a criminal. When you post a video are you criminal You will be punished and arrested. This is war.” Iran’s young generation has attracted attention with the help of Instagram. It is questionable how long they will have this remedy.