Disinformation, misinformation, or the spread of false information by any other moniker is not a new phenomenon. However, asymmetric exploitation within the information environment—by nation-state and non-state actors—are increasingly diffuse and effective. As the information environment continues to expand and transform at an ever-accelerating rate, monitoring the digital engagement space with an approach that actively informs this environment, as opposed to responding to it, is increasingly necessary. #AlertaVenezuela is paving the way for a deeper understanding of the complexities of the information environment in and around Venezuela. By exposing and explaining disinformation in this context, the Atlantic Council will shed light on the path ahead for combatting disinformation and foreign interference around one of the hemisphere’s largest economic, political and humanitarian crises.

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Tue, Feb 11, 2020

#AlertaVenezuela: February 11, 2020

Rumors claiming that Juan Guaidó had given Donald Trump permission to lead a military intervention in Venezuela started to circulate while Guaidó was on an international tour to Europe and the Western Hemisphere. The claims amassed substantial engagement on social media, including a YouTube video that received more than 100,000 views.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

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Tue, Feb 4, 2020

#AlertaVenezuela: February 4, 2020

A Twitter network previously reported by the DFRLab used random text, including snippets of poems, song lyrics, articles, and Wikipedia entries, to amplify anti-Guaidó hashtags on Twitter. The random text appeared to be unrelated to Guaidó and to the hashtags. The network’s actions suggest they engaged in inauthentic behavior to make the hashtags seem more popular than they were in an attempt to influence or manipulate the trending topics on Twitter.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

Disinformation Venezuela
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Tue, Jan 28, 2020

#AlertaVenezuela: January 28, 2020

Accusations of corruption against Juan Guaidó and other National Assembly members resurfaced in the form of a misleading claim regarding the misappropriation of foreign funds that was pushed by pro-Maduro regime blogs and media outlets from Venezuela and regime-allied countries.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

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Tue, Jan 21, 2020

#AlertaVenezuela: January 21, 2020

On January 11, Juan Guaidó, president of the National Assembly who is recognized by more than 50 countries as interim president of Venezuela, announced his intention to appoint a presidential commission to oversee the restructuring of the Maduro regime-backed broadcaster Telesur. The announcement started the debate about the future of the media outlet. The regime mounted a significant response on social and traditional media, including on Telesur itself.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

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Tue, Jan 14, 2020

#AlertaVenezuela: January 14, 2020

Twitter suspended dozens of accounts connected to the Maduro regime on January 7, 2020, including the official accounts of the Ministerio del Poder Popular de Petróleo (the Ministry of People’s Power for Petroleum), the Minister of the Interior, the Central Bank of Venezuela, and the Bolivarian Army of Venezuela.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

Disinformation Venezuela
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Tue, Jan 7, 2020

#AlertaVenezuela: January 7, 2020

As Nicolás Maduro and Juan Guaidó waged a political battle for Venezuela, they spent 2019 going head to head on social media as well. Social media is an important battlefield in Venezuela and one of the areas the regime prioritizes in order to control the country. The DFRLab analyzed their social presence on Facebook and Twitter from January to December 2019 and concluded that, even though Maduro has more followers and page likes, Guaidó garners more engagement with his posts.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

Disinformation Venezuela
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Tue, Dec 17, 2019

#AlertaVenezuela: December 17, 2019

As Nicolás Maduro and Juan Guaidó waged a political battle for Venezuela, they spent 2019 going head to head on social media as well. Social media is an important battlefield in Venezuela and one of the areas the regime prioritizes in order to control the country. The DFRLab analyzed their social presence on Facebook and Twitter from January to December 2019 and concluded that, even though Maduro has more followers and page likes, Guaidó garners more engagement with his posts.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

Disinformation Venezuela
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019

#AlertaVenezuela: December 10, 2019

On December 8, 2019, Spanish newspaper El Mundo published a set of images that the opposition to the Maduro regime took to the International Court of Justice in The Hague. The action was intended to prove that Óscar Pérez, a former police officer, had been executed by the regime. Venezuelan authorities announced on January 16, 2018, that Óscar Pérez had been killed in a shootout with security forces. Videos published on social media, however, showed Pérez asking Maduro forces to stop shooting and promising he would surrender. Pérez had led an insurrection against Maduro in June 2018.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

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Tue, Dec 3, 2019

#AlertaVenezuela: December 3, 2019

Internet users in Venezuela faced partial and total loss of connectivity on December 1, 2019. The disruption was not caused by censorship, as has happened previously, but by the planned maintenance of an undersea cable. Users from privately owned service providers faced connectivity issues from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (local time), which did not affect the state-provider CANTV, according to NetBlocks, a nonprofit organization that monitors internet accessibility around the world.

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

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Tue, Nov 26, 2019

#AlertaVenezuela: November 26, 2019

Colombia has become the latest Latin American country to engage in anti-government protests, as citizens took to the streets across the region calling for change: from marches decrying austerity policies in Ecuador and Chile to protests in Bolivia initially based on claims of fraud in the October 20 election and more recently over the perception that President Evo Morales’s resignation was forced (i.e., a “coup”).

#AlertaVenezuela by Atlantic Council’s DFRLab

Disinformation Venezuela