Ahead of the European Parliamentary elections over a period ranging from December 2018 to May 2019, Alto Analytics conducted a data analytics project with the goal of understanding the public digital sociopolitical conversation and identifying any abnormal attempts to increase social polarization or radicalization across Europe.
The data analytics project was a pan-European collaboration involving multiple organizations, media companies, and events across Europe. The research incorporates data collected in real-time from mid-December 2018 to May 2019 in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, and Spain. Alto’s data scientists worked with Alto’s proprietary software, Alto Analyzer, to index and analyze a data lake fed by a diverse range of public data sources including social media, public forums, blogs, digital communities, discussion boards, news, video sites, wiki sites, and others. The real-time data lake for this extensive analytics project encompassed roughly 900 million data entries from over 95 million users.
Assessment of the digital reach and amplification of these publications indicates that the social media distribution of published partner articles exceeds 215,000,000 followers reached. In total, the project’s research was published in over 25 different countries, with over 115 articles or other pieces of content referencing Alto’s research. Below is a list of selected highlights of media coverage that cover a broad range of Alto’s research conducted over the pre-elections period.

Selected Highlights of Media Coverage

Financial Times: “Homegrown ‘junk news’ on migrants and Islam surges, studies find”

Washington Post: “Want to build a far-right movement? Spain’s Vox party shows how”

Washington Post: “Europe was worried Russia would mess with its elections. Now it has other fears”

Politico: “Europe’s populists are flooding social media, research shows”

The Guardian: “Populists are whipping up a storm as Europe faces lurch to the right”

Bloomberg: “Europe’s Right Is Making a Noise. But Can It Win an Election?”

Bloomberg: “Facebook’s dream hire has made a bad start”

Highlights – French Publications

Le Monde: “The ‘letter of the generals’ to Macron, path of an ordinary ‘fake news’ story”

Le Monde: “Before the European elections, far-right parties dominate the online debate”

Highlights – German Publications

Tagesschau: “Users on the Right dominate discourse”

ARD: “How the Right-wing populists work”

Der Spiegel: “Right-wing populists dominate political discourse on social media platforms

Buzzfeed Germany: “49 of the 100 most successful Facebook posts on the European elections are from the AfD”

Highlights – Italian Publications

La Repubblica: “Altaforte and Il Primato Nazionale: that right-wing network that pollutes the anti-immigrant debate on social media”

La Stampa: Europeans at the starting line: the debate on the Democratic Party polluted by a flood of fake users”

Huffington Post Italy: “The hot topics of the network ahead of the Europeans”

Highlights – Polish Publications

Gazeta Wyborcza: “Politics on the Internet. PiS is fused with a radical right and rules on YouTube”

OKO.press: “The extreme right is penetrating PiS”

 Highlights – Spanish Publications

El País: “Far-right parties take over the political debate on social networks”

El Diario: Children and Grandparents are the Victims of Digital Manipulation

ABC: “Which political party dominates the social networks?”

Television Reporting from ARD and Euronews

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