TROLLES allows identifying and isolating sources whose goal is to manipulate and misinform on a mass scale via the news media. With the help of the new trolless.com platform, users can find specific information about profiles identified as troll profiles: who they stole their identity from, what kind of posts and comments they made on the Internet, what they gave a like to, etc.
TROLLESS co-author Victor Spinu believes that this way we’ll be able to obtain more information about trolls operating in our virtual space. ‘This platform is a step forward in the development of our project (TROLLESS - A/N) and provides a transparent and fair environment for analyzing profiles marked by the application as troll profiles,’ Victor Spinu told Media-azi.md.
Statistically speaking, right now the exact number of active trolls roaming the Moldovan Internet remains unknown, since, according to Victor Spinu, ‘a lot of profiles are activated only during certain periods, such as election campaigns, whereas others are always active’.
At the same time, Spinu believes that the trolling phenomenon is growing and that trolls continue to present a threat, as they can transmit false messages and ideas, as well as propaganda, while remaining unpunishable. ‘Sometimes it’s not even possible to know for certain who’s pulling their strings’, Spinu added.
The project was carried out with the support of the Independent Journalism Center, Internews Moldova and USAID as part of the Media-M programme.