In addition to formal public diplomacy mouthpieces like Russia Today and Sputnik, Russia employs armies of paid trolls and botnets to generate false information that can later be circulated and legitimated as if it were true. Then, in 2016, Russian military intelligence went a step further, by hacking into the private network of the Democratic National Committee, stealing information, and releasing it online to damage Hillary Clinton’s presidential candidacy.
Russia’s combination of traditional public diplomacy and messaging through media organizations like Russia Today (RT) and Sputnik with disinformation and internet trolls is also important. Moreover, in nearby regions, Russia’s domestic media can serve as a powerful instrument in socializing foreign compatriots into a wider Russian cultural world.
The Russian communications and media watchdog Roskomnadzor and representatives from CNN International have expressed an interest in resuming CNN broadcasting in Russia, the press release on the Roskomnadzor's website said Tuesday.
Moscow is waging a highly effective information war in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania with its “Russia Today” television broadcasts in their national languages, a war that the West must respond with its own efforts, according to Elina Lange-Ionatamishvili, a NATO specialist on counter-propaganda.
Stanislav Budnitsky on Russia's latest move in the "information race."
This week workers at the Brooklyn Bridge chanced upon a forgotten room
containing supplies stockpiled against a nuclear attack. Dates on the
materials were evocative: 1957 - the year of Sputnik; 1962 - the year
of the Cuban missile crisis. This discovery is an oddly evocative
interruption from the high point last long war into what future
historians will doubtless see as the opening phase of the era-defining
conflict. It is like a ghost in a Shakespeare play -- reminding us of