New Yorker's Adrian Chen: Russia Social Media Marketing Bot Campaign Wasn't Effective

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Adrian Chen of The New Yorker tells MSNBC's Chris Hayes a Russian social media marketing operation backed with a couple of million dollars with employees who have a bare grasp of the English language with a lack of understanding who they're targeting didn't seem to be that effective.

"I think if you think about that in terms of just a normal marketing campaign, that's not going to be a very good bang for your buck," he said.

"The effectiveness question which everybody is talking about now, it's of my personal belief that it isn't all that effective," Chen said on Monday's All In. "It's essentially a social media marketing campaign with 90 people, a couple million dollars, a few million dollars behind it, run by people who have, you know, a bare grasp of the English language and not a full understanding of who they're targeting, what they're targeting."





Chen said the paranoid aspect such as "anybody who is tweeting something that you don't like" is what is causing trouble on the internet.

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC: Do you think that it's going to -- it seems like in some ways it's a remarkably effective model. In so far AS if you just want to mess with people, there is this kind of -- there is this kind of salt in the wound thing happening here, right? In terms of what the goals are, you don't have to pull off some enormous thing. You just have to kind of be in people's consciousness enough constantly in this sort of irritant way with 90 people you're paying, running an operation that doesn't cost that much money. It does seem like a good bang for your buck.

ADRIAN CHEN, THE NEW YORKER: Well, the effectiveness question which everybody is talking about now, it's of my personal belief that it isn't all that effective. It's essentially a social media marketing campaign with 90 people, a couple million dollars, a few million dollars behind it, run by people who have, you know, a bare grasp of the English language and not a full understanding of who they're targeting, what they're targeting.

I think if you think about that in terms of just a normal marketing campaign, that's not going to be a very good bang for your buck.

CHRIS HAYES: Huh?

ADRIAN CHEN: I think the paranoia aspect, right, the idea that there is this kind of all-powerful or immense propaganda machine that is going on, and anybody who is tweeting something that you don't like or is kind of causing trouble on the internet.

CHRIS HAYES: Could be an agent.

ADRIAN CHEN: Could be connected to Russia, that is a very powerful thing that's going on and is really increasing now I think in the wake of these indictments in kind of a warring way. There is not a lot of people saying well, let's hold back, you know, maybe it's not all of that big of a deal.

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