KYIV-In the two days after flight MH17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine, a Russian troll factory posted over 65 thousand tweets blaming Ukraine for the disaster, De Groene Amsterdammer reports after analyzing 9 million tweets posted by a St Petersburg based troll factory called the Internet Research Agency.
According to the magazine, an organized campaign was launched after MH17 was shot down. The Internet Research Agency played a role in this, as did pro-Russia media who circulated theories that 'proved' Russia innocent in the disaster.
Immediately after the disaster, the factory posted 40,931 tweets using hashtags like #Kievshotboeingdown and #KievProvocation, according to the magazine. The next day another 24,844 such tweets were posted. According to De Groene Amsterdammer, the campaign lated less than 24 hours. After July 19th, 2014, the Internet Research Agency still tweeted about MH17, but much less actively and often than during the operation.
De Groene Amsterdammer reported last year that Russian trolls focussed on MH17 after the disaster, but the scale of the operation was unclear until now.