[Marxism] Fwd: Salutin' Putin: inside a Russian troll house | World news | The Guardian

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Apr 2 06:03:06 MDT 2015

Just after 9pm each day, a long line of workers files out of 55 
Savushkina Street, a modern four-storey office complex with a small sign 
outside that reads “Business centre”. Having spent 12 hours in the 
building, the workers are replaced by another large group, who will work 
through the night.

The nondescript building has been identified as the headquarters of 
Russia’s “troll army”, where hundreds of paid bloggers work round the 
clock to flood Russian internet forums, social networks and the comments 
sections of western publications with remarks praising the president, 
Vladimir Putin, and raging at the depravity and injustice of the west.

The Guardian spoke to two former employees of the troll enterprise, one 
of whom was in a department running fake blogs on the social network 
LiveJournal, and one who was part of a team that spammed municipal chat 
forums around Russia with pro-Kremlin posts. Both said they were 
employed unofficially and paid cash-in-hand.

They painted a picture of a work environment that was humourless and 
draconian, with fines for being a few minutes late or not reaching the 
required number of posts each day. Trolls worked in rooms of about 20 
people, each controlled by three editors, who would check posts and 
impose fines if they found the words had been cut and pasted, or were 
ideologically deviant.


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