According to a new analysis, most Russian-linked Facebook ads before and after the 2016 election were tied to race, crime, and policing.
More than half of the Facebook ads bought by Russian groups during the 2016 election to sow discord and division were tied to race, according to a USA Today analysis of the more than 3,500 ads published by House Intelligence Committee Democrats on Thursday. And the closer to the election, the more race-related ad buys there were.
Democrats released ads bought by the Internet Research Agency, the Kremlin-linked troll farm responsible for much of Russia’s disinformation campaign in the US, from 2015, 2016, and 2017 this week. (You can view all the ads here.) The ads paint a picture of how Russians used Facebook to stir up controversy and play on preexisting divisions and biases.