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LikeWar

The Weaponization of Social Media
Narrated by: George Guidall
Length: 11 hrs and 21 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (194 ratings)
Regular price: $27.99
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Publisher's Summary

Two defense experts explore the collision of war, politics, and social media, where the most important battles are now only a click away.

Through the weaponization of social media, the Internet is changing war and politics, just as war and politics are changing the Internet. Terrorists livestream their attacks, “Twitter wars” produce real world casualties, and viral misinformation alters not just the result of battles, but the very fate of nations. The result is that war, tech, and politics have blurred into a new kind of battlespace that plays out on our smartphones.

P. W. Singer and Emerson Brooking tackle the mind bending questions that arise when war goes online and the online world goes to war. They explore how ISIS copies the Instagram tactics of Taylor Swift, a former World of Warcraft addict foils war crimes thousands of miles away, Internet trolls shape elections, and China uses a smartphone app to police the thoughts of 1.4 billion citizens. What can be kept secret in a world of networks? Does social media expose the truth or bury it? And what role do ordinary people now play in international conflicts?

Delving into the web’s darkest corners, we meet the unexpected warriors of social media, such as the rapper turned jihadist PR czar and the Russian hipsters who wage unceasing infowars against the West. Finally, looking to the crucial years ahead, LikeWar outlines a radical new paradigm for understanding and defending against the unprecedented threats of our networked world.

©2018 P.W. Singer and Emerson T. Brooking (P)2018 Recorded Books

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  • Overall
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    4 out of 5 stars

Deep analysis of the Social Media revolution

The beginning third of the book is a historical summary of the internet. The second is a detailed series of events shaped through social media. The third is how policy and social media are failing. The conclusion made the entire book worth it, great analogies and assessments to quickly summarize the lessons learned through the text. My favorite approximate quote, “censoring our own content is akin to covering our mouths while we cough, it is to protect others and not ourselves.” We need a cultural responsibility adjustment.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Jordan
  • Anchorage, Alaska, US
  • 01-28-19

Can't overstate its importance.

Very informative and well constructed explanation of the most challenging decade to come and the environment and technologies shaping it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A Must Read Book

This book really put the emerging technological issues of the 21st century in perspective. There are still many alternate futures possible, but this book does an excellent job exploring the most likely outcomes of technology's impact on the information age.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Good Information Ruined by Whining Political Bias

I had high hopes for this book. I attended a speaking engagement by Peter Singer and found him to be intelligent, engaging, and relevant. My colleagues shared that impression, a tough one to win in a room full of graduate degree holding professionals. He mentioned this book and his fiction work and I eagerly read both. I should have skipped this one. I'll be telling my colleagues to do the same.

The authors spend the first third or so of this book talking about the history of the internet and then lead this conversation into the history of its manipulation. Unfortunately though, that is where the book falls off a cliff and dies. Thereafter, they take every opportunity to bash Donald Trump as businessman, candidate, and President. The insults and innuendo came so heavily that there or times when you can't get more than 5 pages without Trump being again insulted. Other times, the authors mention Trump more times in one page than they do the internet itself. Paramount among the childish attacks are the multiple times where the authors take the opportunity to mention Russians or death squads or rogue nations in the same sentence as Trump. The intent is clear. They hate Trump, got it. I kept waiting for them to get back on topic, but it never happened.

I'm neither a Trump fan nor a Trump hater, but the childish vitriol the authors pour on President Trump makes me think this book was the result of a brainstorming session on how to get their Trump hatred into book form without telling readers anything about that plan on the jacket.

This book is an absolute shame and it destroyed the respect I had for Peter Singer. Had the authors limited the criticism of the President to a few barbs or even a few outright vilifications, I could have accepted it. Instead, they lashed out like whiny children who had their toys taken away - for over half the book! The intellectual and literary value these men had to offer was blunted by their inability to comport themselves like adults. The remainder of their bodies of work are tainted by their willingness to devalue this work in order to promote their political biases.

TLDR: Whiny authors ruin good content by spending most of the book bashing Trump.

7 of 12 people found this review helpful

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Fantastic book

This is a must read book for anyone interested in the future of democracy. The authors did a fantastic job explaining the past and painting the current and future picture. I found myself taking the long way home multiple times to get in just a few more minutes of engaging narration. if this book doesn't make you question everything online, I don't know what will.

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Just Trump bashing.

This book contains as many facts as it does pizza. Author's view of social media is nonsense.

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A must read for everyone with a computer.

This book hits on important topics regarding social media that everyone should be made aware of. As we ponder over how or political spectrum became so polarized "like war" sheds light on the role social media plays in that polarization.

Also for anyone in the military, this book clearly describes the potential OPSEC fallout of posting on social media.

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Leftist skewed

left leaning....you would think with a PHD you could hide it better....but you did work with Obama

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Very thought provoking

This is a very timely and thought provoking book. It tied together a lot of events that I was aware of. However it gave the internet and social media angle that i wad not so aware of. For that I enjoyed it.

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Some minor flaws, but the gist is correct

Overall this was a great title, which fits beautifully into my filter bubble and highlight what seems to me is the net delusion. In many ways this is rehash of previous works, albeit adding its own angle and addressing the psychology of individuals and groups. Again I doubt this is unique or solely new ground, but it is compact, coherent and all in the same place.

There are some flaws that stood out to me where points are made that mistranslation of words are used in propaganda, no doubt this is true but 'cadaver' is German for dead body, it can imply animal in context but generally to be explicit German would specify 'tier'. This does not invalidate the point but subtly makes another, which isn't then addressed. One could say its in the negative space... . Either way, this makes me wonder about other facts which might not be so specifically, though it does not detract from the point being made, and in the context is minor. This certainly is not what the thrust of the book rests upon, and only comes up once but it stood out to me.

That nitpick aside, great book.

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  • Ben W.
  • 02-12-19

Great Book. Average Narration

A highly recommend and insightful text. But please get someone else to voice it. Cadence and intonation make this really hard to follow.