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Finland “Winning the War on Fake News” By Teaching Children To Believe Mainstream Propaganda

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Finland "Winning the War on Fake News" By Teaching Children To Believe Mainstream Propaganda

ILLUSTRATIVE

Finland is “winning the war on fake news” and its findings in this “war” may be crucial to Western Democracy, the CNN claimed.

In May 2019, in Helsinki, Finland at the Espoo Adult Education Centre, lecturer Jussi Toivanen, who is the Chief Communications Specialist at Finnish Prime Minister’s Office spoke about misinformation and “Russian propaganda.”

His PowerPoint presentation had slides with catchy titles such as: “Have you been hit by the Russian troll army?”

They showed methods used to deceive users on social media: image and video manipulations, half-truths, intimidation and false profiles.

Another slide, featuring a diagram of a Twitter profile page, explained how to identify bots: look for stock photos, assess the volume of posts per day, check for inconsistent translations and a lack of personal information.

Finally, it had the popular deepfake video showing Barack Obama talking various nonsense.

Jussi Toivanen’s course is part of a program of the Finnish government which has been on-going since 2014. Two years before Russia allegedly meddled in the US elections, thus Finland was ahead of the curve on Russian hysteria.

“Finland has faced down Kremlin-backed propaganda campaigns ever since it declared independence from Russia 101 years ago. But in 2014, after Moscow annexed Crimea and backed rebels in eastern Ukraine, it became obvious that the battlefield had shifted: information warfare was moving online.”

Toivanen, didn’t specifically say anything concrete, as cited by the CNN, he said that it was “difficult to pinpoint” the exact number of misinformation campaigns that have targeted Finland. Regardless, they nevertheless play on issues like immigration, the European Union, or whether Finland should become a full member of NATO.

Allegedly, Russian trolling ramped up in 2015, and Finnish President Sauli Niinisto called on every Finnish citizen to take responsibility and fight false information. That, of course, by itself wasn’t enough, so American help was needed.

Toivanen then said something that’s been becoming and more apparent – the targets of propaganda need to taught from very young age to only believe the Western propaganda, any other kind is inherently wrong and evil, but the US-fabricated one can’t possibly be fake news.

“It’s not just a government problem, the whole society has been targeted. We are doing our part, but it’s everyone’s task to protect the Finnish democracy,” Toivanen said, before adding: “The first line of defense is the kindergarten teacher.”

At the French-Finnish School of Helsinki, a bilingual state-run K-12 institution, training children to spot any alleged attempt by Russia to influence their fragile minds is taken quite seriously.

In Valentina Uitto’s social studies class, a group of 10th-graders were locked in debate over what the key issues will be in next week’s EU elections.

“They’ve gathered what they think they know about the EU election … now let’s see if they can sort fact from fiction,” Uitto said with a smirk.

The students broke off into groups, grabbing laptops and cell phones to investigate their chosen topics – the idea is to inspire them to become digital detectives, like a rebooted version of Sherlock Holmes for the post-Millennial generation.

The French-Finnish School partners with Finnish fact-checking agency Faktabaari. Together they create a sort of course frame for students from elementary to high school that would make them “media literate.”

The exercises include examining claims found in YouTube videos and social media posts, comparing media bias in an array of different “clickbait” articles, probing how misinformation preys on readers’ emotions, and even getting students to try their hand at writing fake news stories themselves. (Because articles in UK Media and US Media such as “WORLD WAR 3 ALERT” aren’t clickbait, at all).

“What we want our students to do is … before they like or share in the social media they think twice – who has written this? Where has it been published? Can I find the same information from another source?” Kari Kivinen, director of Helsinki French-Finnish School and former secretary-general of the European Schools, told CNN.

This approach, though, needs to be careful, since skepticism may ultimately turn into cynicism in students, and nobody would want that, you want them to only believe the targeted propaganda.

“It’s very annoying having to fact check everything, not being able to trust anything … or anyone on the internet,” said 15-year-old Tatu Tukiainen, one of the students in Uitto’s class. “I think we should try to put a stop to that.”

Finland, possibly following in the US’ footsteps is also “exporting democracy,” but they are doing it through experts, who are teaching others how to spot alleged Russian misinformation.

“They knew that the Kremlin was messing with Finnish politics, but they didn’t have a context with which to interpret that. They were wondering if this meant they [Russia] would invade, was this war?” Jed Willard, director of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Center for Global Engagement at Harvard University, who was hired by Finland to train state officials to spot and then hit back at fake news.

Russia, of course, maintains that it doesn’t interfere in any domestic politics, but who believes that anyway.

Regardless, Willard’s class appears to be taking a page from Ukraine’s democracy: in his class, focus is shifted on developing a “strong national narrative” rather than attempting to even debunk alleged false claims.

“The Finns have a very unique and special strength in that they know who they are. And who they are is directly rooted in human rights and the rule of law, in a lot of things that Russia, right now, is not,” Willard said. “There is a strong sense of what it means to be Finnish … that is a super power.”

Of course, there’s skeptics, who consider that specifically teaching children to only believe Western propaganda isn’t enough. Social Media platforms should do everything they can to filter and censure the content, so that it doesn’t even have a chance to approach any citizen of the “democratic” world.

“Facebook, Twitter, Google/YouTube … who are enablers of Russian trolls … they really should be regulated,” said Jessikka Aro, a journalist with Finland’s public broadcaster YLE.

“Just like any polluting companies or factories should be and are already regulated, for polluting the air and the forests, the waters, these companies are polluting the minds of people. So, they also have to pay for it and take responsibility for it.”

Aro’s first open-source investigation back in 2014 looked at how Russia-linked disinformation campaigns impacted Finns.

“Many Finns told me that they have witnessed these activities, but that it was only merely new digital technology for the old fashioned, old school Soviet Union propaganda, which has always existed and that Finns have been aware of,” Aro said. “So, they could avoid the trolls.”

In the last Finnish elections officials saw no “symptoms” of Russian meddling, and according to Toivanen that means Finland has become a difficult target for the alleged Russian trolls.

“A couple of years ago, one of my colleagues said that he thought Finland has won the first round countering foreign-led hostile information activities. But even though Finland has been quite successful, I don’t think that there are any first, second or third rounds, instead, this is an ongoing game,” Toivanen said.

“It’s going to be much more challenging for us to counter these kinds of activities in the future. And we need to be ready for that.”

Thus, a more proactive approach is needed, and look forward to it.

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  • occupybacon

    Good evening, Russian trolls!

    • Hasbara Hunter

      Good Evening there is our Jewish ZioNazi Cockroach again…straight from the Brothels of Hell Aviv…

      BEWARE EXTREME HASBARA-TROLL ACTIVITY

      Hasbara Checklist:

      Toronto Tonto, Critical Thinker 911, Jens Holm, Occupying Pig Meat, Jacob “the Nose” Wohl, Simon Bernstein

      Some Extra…:

      Roger Smellyman, Frank Behrenstein, Baron Von GoatBanger, Joe Dirt, Smaug, Mountains, Lord of the Wankers, DutchNational, Just Watching, Hamster, retiredSOFguy, Terry Penis, Vidura, Neil Barron, Total Pinocchio, Derapage, Fatime Oomayadin, Free man, King Tudor777, Velociraptor, Ajdin Aksoy, Superfly, Serious, أبو ياسر, NOD

      Beware! These Folks get paid in $hekels to manipulate & speak with Crooked Tongue…

      https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/israel-setting-covert-units-tweet-facebook-government-propaganda

      https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-01-03/everyone-affected-why-implications-intel-bug-are-staggering

      The Gulag Archipelago
      https://www.google.nl/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/world/2003/jan/25/russia.books

      https://www.systemaspetsnaz.com/history-of-the-cheka-ogpu-nkvd-mgb-kgb-fsb

      https://holodomorinfo.com

      Copy this and use it every time you run into one of those PARASITIC HASBARAT-TROLLS:

      Taken from UNZ Review, article, “Use of TERMITE by Louis Farrakahn was exactly right” – “Arthur Koestler, (a person of the Jewish Faith –My, Freespirit emphasis ) is quoting from Maurice Maeterlinck’s Life of the Termites in order to establish in his readers’ minds a salient political point. Not only does Koestler find the termite to be the most accurate metaphor for society’s decay, but his other book, The Thirteenth Tribe, debunks the claim by the white Caucasian Ashkenazi Jews that they are Jews at all! His careful, scholarly, and historically accurate 1976 study found that the white people we think of as Jews—the Netanyahus, the Jonathan Greenblatts, the Alan Dershowitzes and the rest of them—are imposters with no genetic connection to the holy land or holy people of the Bible; they are not even Semites! Koestler
 proves that their Caucasian tribal ancestors converted to Judaism sometime in the 8th century. So the charge of “anti-Semitism” constantly leveled at Blacks and their leaders has no actual meaning at all.” https://www.unz.com/article

      A Nation can survive its Fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive Treason from within. An Enemy at the Gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his Banner openly. But the Traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his Sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the Traitor appears not a Traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his Victims, and he wears their Face and their Arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the Soul of a Nation, he works Secretly and Unknown in the Night to Undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body Politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is Less to Fear….

      • occupybacon

        I’m outraged I’m not the head of your list! I was hoping for a rise from my bosses, you ruined everything!

        • PZIVJ

          His list may be a bit dated. If Critical thinker moves down the list, Wohl troll becomes #2, Am patriot is included, you will move down to #5. Sorry, less shekels for you :(

          • occupybacon

            Well, at least I spend my time with smart people here, I have a lot to learn from them.

          • Antre

            Lol you pathetic loser imbecile.. you spent your time in your basement, eating shit there, and occasionally sucking off your mom’s boyfriends… but most of the time, you just pollute this site with your monkey screams and random garbage 20h per day, every day.
            You’re just a turd; a fat, ugly, stupid turd rotting slowly in that basement.

          • occupybacon

            Unlike you, I’m not living in that shithole named Russia and I don’t respond to Putin’s orders. But I appreciate your honesty :)

        • Toronto Tonto

          Sorry bro I got that credit LOL

          • occupybacon

            Sincere congrats, may the best always win, hardcore capitalists always appreciate good competition :) Unlike Putin.

    • Antre

      Eat shit and die then eat shit in hell!

  • Hasbara Hunter

    European Children & Adults already Believe the Bullshit-World they Live in since They day they were born…most of’m Dumbass Ignorant and Arrogant Sheeples are beyond help…They were bred that way for Centuries…just like you do with Cattle….try to milk a Bison….that’s gonna be a shitload of fun….

  • Pave Way IV

    “…What we want our students to do is … before they like or share in the social media they think twice – who has written this? Where has it been published? Can I find the same information from another source?”

    In other words, the school director is telling them to discard all critical thinking or independent thought process. The ‘proper’ way to evaluate a fact is to see if it was parroted by the usual MSM suspects. If Google tells you the New York Times, The Daily Mail UK and the Helsinki Times have reported the same ‘fact’, then it’s legit. If not: Soviet or Nazi propaganda. Beware! Sorry, but the few Finns I know are far more skeptical of their government and MSM than the average American.

    “…In the last Finnish elections officials saw no “symptoms” of Russian meddling, and according to Toivanen that means Finland has become a difficult target for the alleged Russian trolls…”

    Um… or how about “the outcome of Finnish elections are so irrelevant that nobody will pay Russian trolls to ‘target’ them. FFS, they’re not working for free!”

  • hvaiallverden

    Mitta vitto.

    Yeah, Somi is going down, not an surprice when we know they are traitores, Finns should go down to Helsinki and hang them all, like Sweden, Norway and the DenofMarks, all highjacked by the ZioNazi scums, PC-infested insanity ruling our lands, why do you think they are drooling nonsense, because they can, and we cant do jack shit about it, and now, Finland is been multiculturally enritched, yup rape after rape, robbery after robbery, slowly is the scums killing off Fins, their hatred is ancient, and the traitores of course blames somebody else, of course.
    Then to Russians Trolls, Pekka, I am a Finn, from Suenjel, ancient Bjarmia, and I bet this f…. dont even know what I talk about, do you, and what happened to the Skolts, mofo, and the fake Samis whom is by an bloody miracle becoming an Native people, Samis from Norway/Sweden, is 100% fake, have never been in Lappland, but are manily ordinary people coming from other parts and have by the ZioNazis become suddenly natives, where as non of them can verify it, I can, they cant and now the rotten scums in Helisnki is wiping Skolts out of their own homeland and is wiping us out of Finnish history, like the Karelians.
    And despite my mother whom is genuine Skolt, she is been pissed upon by the scums in Helisnki.
    I will never, never forget that.

    I tought the Ruskies where rotten, but my problem is de facto the Traitores in Helsinki.
    And now, they want half of Africa to come here to enritch us, yup, and I bet that this f… is of Swedish
    decsent, arent you.
    I have familys whom fought the winter war, fought even when Russia was Tzaris, way back in history.
    But most of them is in the North, Inari to Nelimo, father side, from the middle, Senjajoki.
    One of them hangs in the halls of the Swedish natinal museum, one of the men traveling with the corps of Carl 12th, rat, dont insult me when it comes to history, rotten f….
    Dont even again drool shit you have no clue about f…. traitor.
    I am 100% f…. Finn, and all I have fought for was for our/my people, and those times I indeed have writen about and suported Russia is when the western traitores as this scumbag, is lying thru their theeths so obvious it hurts as this traitor is doing right now, cant admitt their own stupditys, wrong poltics as infracstucture is crumbling, etc, etc but blames Russia, to me, its an sign of cross incompetance or as I have writen, been an traitor.
    This is an stupid recap of the Pissgate nonsense, just done by an idiot/s.

    I may even go to Finland soon, and I even may go you your f…. house so you can see me in real person, traitore you will know me when you see me, not to wack you, you aint wurth it, rats are just rats, like Somalis and Arabs/Blacks, but to beat some good old fasion sense back into you and so even an shit head like this, can see I am a f…. Finn.
    I never promise anything I cant stand by, but this time, I may do it, traitores should be hanged by the nearest possible lamp post, that day, moron is coming, I will always, always fight for justice, and right now, you are my worst enemy, the enemy within.

    peace