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Biden's DOJ awards university nearly $1M to create 'disinformation' dashboard to help track, curb 'violent extremism'
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Biden's DOJ awards university nearly $1M to create 'disinformation' dashboard to help track, curb 'violent extremism'

The Biden administration's Department of Justice recently awarded a South Carolina university a nearly $1 million grant to create a "disinformation" dashboard that will help track "specific accounts" to prevent "violent extremism," the Daily Caller News Foundation reported.

The DOJ will provide Clemson University with $953,203 in taxpayer funds to research "mis-, dis-, and mal-information," referred to as "MDM" in the grant's description. It noted that it "has become a top priority for governments, private organizations, and researchers" to investigate, reduce, and prevent MDM.

"Nationally publicized political events often become focal points of MDM, which are exploited by various individuals and groups to launch disinformation campaigns and trigger spontaneous or crowd-sourced diffusion of disinformation and violent extremism," the grant's description stated.

The nearly $1 million award will fund a university project that aims to answer several questions, including: "(1) What characteristics of high-profile events are more likely to trigger online MDM campaigns? (2) What network patterns are associated with online MDM clusters, and dissemination pathways, and what are the technical characteristics of more vulnerable platforms? (3) What are the common characteristics of organizations and other actors engaged in MDM campaigns? (4) What are the key themes and linguistic features of MDM campaigns, and how do they vary across disseminators and adopters?"

After answering the above questions, the university team will be tasked with crafting "specialized algorithms to identify the creation of MDM campaigns."

The project will conduct "the first real-time mapping of the spread of MDM campaigns around contentious public events," the description explained.

"In the first phase, the team will produce an original events-level dataset that documents real-time characteristics of MDM-triggering political events," the grant description continued. "In the second phase, advanced computational tools will be employed to monitor MDM campaigns in nearreal time and to identify specific accounts/nodes linked to outsized contributions."

According to the description, the project will be used to "shape responses to MDM." It noted that the research will be "useful for policy makers, law enforcement officials, as well as community stakeholders." The university team will also be tasked with developing "outreach materials and an online dashboard with an MDM tracker."

"The dashboard will provide a multi-level framework to understand the determinants and characteristics of MDM outbreaks, and identify links between specific linguistic characteristics and their virality. Additionally, the MDM tracker will provide insights into the commonalities and differences amongst online behaviors of mdm adopters, non-adopters, and disseminators," the grant description concludes.

The taxpayer funds will be awarded to the university through the DOJ's National Institute of Justice Research, Evaluation, and Development Project Grants. The grant program aims to "foster the development of new knowledge and tools that can be applied to reduce crime and advance justice, particularly at the state and local level."

Neither the DOJ nor Clemson University responded to a request for comment from the DCNF.

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Candace Hathaway

Candace Hathaway

Candace Hathaway is a staff writer for Blaze News.
@candace_phx →