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United Russia uses 'AI and special algorithms' to purge war critics from party database

Source: Vedomosti

Russia’s ruling political party, United Russia, has conducted a “thorough purge” of its database of supporters in advance of the upcoming election cycle, removing anybody who doesn’t support the war against Ukraine, Vedomosti reported on Monday.

Sources from within United Russia's party structure told journalists that the database was initially cut down from 25 million people to 9 million, but that 4 million more were then added, leaving the total number of supporters on the database at 13 million. According to the sources, the purge was conducted using “artificial intelligence and special algorithms” that inspected people’s social media profiles.

If a person spoke out against the special [military] operation [online] and it was found by the algorithm, and then another check confirmed the person’s views, then he was removed from our database. Both negative and positive activities are written into our verification algorithms. So we’re also identifying supporters of the special military operation.

According to political strategists who spoke to Vedomosti, the inspection of people’s statements regarding the war is likely more of a “political move designed to increase party supporters’ public expressions of loyalty” than an attempt to find the ruling party’s true electorate, as supporters of the war against Ukraine aren’t limited to United Russia.

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