The New York Times front page on Tuesday tried to help jump-start Joe Biden’s moribund social media presence in “Trump Won the Internet. Democrats Are Scrambling to Take It Back.” The Times got awfully defensive on Biden’s behalf, labeling "extremist sites" that would dare to attack the leading Democratic candidate with "disinformation."
The deceptively edited video that purported to show Joseph R. Biden Jr. endorsing President Trump’s re-election bounced relentlessly around the internet, falsely painting the former vice president as too confused to know what office he was running for or whom he was vying to run against.
The doctored video didn’t originate with one of the extremist sites that trade in left-bashing disinformation. It was posted on Twitter by Mr. Trump’s own social media director. From there, it collected shares, retweets and likes from the social media accounts of the president, his eldest son and the multitudinous conservative influencers and websites that carry his message to voters’ palms hour by hour, minute by minute, second by second.
The paper is not nearly so sensitive to "right-bashing disinformation," like Russia-gate.
Co-authors Jim Rutenberg (author of the August 2016 front-page screed arguing the media had a duty to oppose candidate Trump) and reporter Matthew Rosenberg strategized alongside the Democrats on how to regain the White House from Trump and his “loyalists.” Last year Rosenberg squeezed out a front-page Sunday story sympathizing with Biden over a satirical anti-Biden website put up by Republicans.
As Mr. Biden closes in on his party’s nomination, that digital mismatch underscores one of the Democrats’ biggest general-election challenges: They are up against a political figure who has marshaled all the forces of the modern web to refract reality and savage his opponents....
It’s only Trump and the Republican Party misbehaving online.
Then there is the raging debate about whether to fight Mr. Trump and his digital forces meme for meme, falsehood for falsehood, troll attack for troll attack, or to appeal instead to the electorate’s better angels.
This was an amusing summary of Biden's current woes.
....A party mainstay who rose in politics when the platforms to master were The Wilmington Evening Journal, WPVI-TV and the U.S. Postal Service, he has neither the online army of Mr. Sanders, the selfie-savvy style of Senator Elizabeth Warren nor the prodigious digital content studio of Michael R. Bloomberg.
Rutenberg and Rosenberg located anecdotes to portray Trump’s minions as outclassed by Democrats, who just fret to a fault about people’s privacy when they’re not doxing conservatives.
A trans-Atlantic group called the Alliance of Democracies last year issued a “Pledge for Election Integrity,” forswearing the use of disinformation, troll networks and deceptively edited content.
The online list has nearly 200 signers from the European Union but only one from the United States -- Mr. Biden.
The only social media-related criticism of Biden came next, in a parenthetical aside.
(That said, the Washington Post “Fact Checker” ruled that a Biden ad attacking Mr. Trump this month used manipulated video.)