US media reported last month that China’s enormous propaganda apparatus is ramping up its global disinformation efforts. The report argues that China still has not fully used its capacities to carry out a “people’s war” on global public opinion, but when it does, the party-state could overwhelm international social media with overt and covert information operations. According to a report in The Diplomat:
January 28, 2022 Although the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has long engaged in information warfare to manipulate public opinion, hoping to win hearts and minds around the world, Beijing has recently stepped up its global efforts, showing some new patterns and characteristics unseen before.
Read the full report here.
The report highlights China’s various methods to influence opinions and shape perceptions worldwide, including the following covered in the past by the Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR).”
- How its domestic and international disinformation machinery have started to merge and how the country taps private businesses or media companies to carry out influence operations.
- How it employs an extensive network of more than 20 million internet trolls to amplify content favorable to the Chinese government.
- How it has flooded YouTube with propaganda videos.
The report argues that even though US social media companies have taken measures to remove China’s state-linked information operations, it is not enough to deal with the industrial scale and for-profit model of Chinese propaganda. It concludes that Chinese efforts haven’t yet reached their potential and could soon overwhelm international media.