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Δευτέρα, 24 Ιουνίου, 2024

China tensions soar as Beijing harnesses AI and ‘guerrilla influencers’ in propaganda war

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China is escalating its propaganda campaign, using advanced AI and so-called “guerrilla influencers” to reshape global perceptions and challenge Western narratives.

Over the past month, China Global Television Network (CGTN), the international arm of China Central Television, has launched a series of AI-generated videos called “Fractured America”, according to City AM. These videos highlight issues such as class divides, labour disputes, and the military-industrial complex in the United States.

This effort is part of a broader strategy under President Xi Jinping’s directive to “tell China’s story well”.

As Beijing seeks to expand its influence in the Global South and counter what it sees as increasing hostility from the US, Chinese media is under pressure to promote China’s message more effectively. The goal is to showcase China not only as an economic powerhouse but also as a cultural and geopolitical leader.

A significant part of this strategy involves contrasting China’s successes with the perceived failures of the US. “Fractured America” and similar content portray the US as divided and unstable, with defence companies profiting from global conflicts and politicians failing their constituents.

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A still from China Global Television Network’s ‘fractured America’.

As Beijing seeks to expand its influence in the Global South and counter what it sees as increasing hostility from the US, Chinese media is under pressure to promote China’s message more effectively. The goal is to showcase China not only as an economic powerhouse but also as a cultural and geopolitical leader.

For instance, Xinhua, China’s official news agency, recently released an AI-generated song mocking the US’s national debt, featuring a cartoonish depiction of Uncle Sam. The song claims that “Though debts are scary and solutions unfound, with dollars in hand we can dance around.”

These AI-driven efforts are designed to exploit real concerns within American society, potentially deepening internal divisions.

The generative AI boom offers China the ability to create better visuals, more natural language, and smarter ways to engage foreign audiences. This content spreads across platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and X, amplifying China’s reach. Beyond state media, a network of “guerrilla influencers” has also emerged, producing pro-China and anti-US content.

Reports from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and research firm Graphika also found that coordinated campaigns are using deepfake news anchors and other sophisticated techniques to push Beijing’s narratives.

.express.co.uk

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