December 29, 2011


By Josh Sternberg for

Just when you thought it was safe to post that scurrilous update to your favorite social network. Earlier this year, The Guardian reported that the U.S military awarded a $2.76 million contract to Ntrepid, a California corporation, to develop software that will create fake personas (sock puppets) to try to influence dialogue among online denizens while propagating American propaganda.

The Pentagon is developing plans to use social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter as both a resource and a weapon in future conflicts. Its research and development agency is offering $42 million in funding to anyone who can help.

Social media will change the nature of warfare just as surely as the telegraph, the radio and the telephone did, and the Pentagon is fearful of being caught short.