Friday, 17 February 2012

sockpuppets! enlighten yourself.

Internet personae used to sway popular opinion. America gov, software named metalgear.
Operation Earnest VoiceIn March 2011 The Guardian newspaper reported that Ntrepid had won a $2.76 million contract for "online persona management" (commonly known as "sockpuppetry") operations from the U.S. military.[1] The contract is for the creation of 10 "fake online personas to influence net conversations and spread US propaganda."[1] The technology would not be used in the U.S, or on sites owned by U.S. corporations such as Facebook and Twitter.[3] Rather, it would be used exclusively outside the U.S. on sites owned by non-U.S. corporations, in order to counter violent extremist and enemy propaganda.[3]

Ntrepid will supply software, named "MetalGear",[4] that will enable one operator to create and control multiple personas from one computer, "without fear of being discovered by sophisticated adversaries".[2] The software sought would allow a user to have 10 personas.[5] Each persona would have a background, history, supporting details, and cyber presence that is consistent from a technical, cultural, and geographic standpoint.[5][3] The user would be able to use his different online personas from the same PC, and make them appear to be coming from almost anywhere in the world, without his true location being determined even by a sophisticated enemy.[5][3] The service envisioned would also communicate to the user real-time local information, so that he could appear to be socially aware as he would be if he were located in the relevant geographic location.[5]

The project is overseen by U.S. Central Command (Centcom), whose spokesman Commander Bill Speaks stated that the operation would be carried out in languages other than English, particularly Arabic, Farsi, and Urdu.[1][6] He stated that, "The technology supports classified blogging activities on foreign-language websites to enable Centcom to counter violent extremist and enemy propaganda outside the U.S."[6]

The project will probably be based at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida, and will be within the remit of Operation Earnest Voice.[1]