I am a researcher, writer, and instructor with a focus on emergent technology and politics. My work looks at how socially-oriented online automation (bots, algorithms, etc.) is used to enable both democracy and civic control. Most recently, I’ve been writing and presenting on the ways social bots–automated accounts on social media that look and act like real users–are used by political groups in attempts to alter public opinion. I’m currently editing a collaborative series of country-based case studies on how cyber armies and patriotic trolling groups use automated tools like bots for influence campaigns across sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit.
I am the Director of Research of the Computational Propaganda Research Project at the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford, a fellow at Google’s think tank and incubator Jigsaw, and a PhD Candidate (ABD) in the Department of Communication at the University of Washington.You can track the OII team’s research at www.politicalbots.org.
I work between Oxford, UK and Seattle, WA and tweet from @samuelwoolley