Monsanto and Others Caught Paying Internet ‘Trolls’ to Attack Activists


Have you ever seen a post, comment, or reply that absolutely reeked of behind-the-scenes compensation by corporations like Monsanto? In the growing age of internet activism, and the expansion of social media as a tool to spread the word on real issues, paid internet trolling is becoming a new career path.

Now, in case you’re not familiar with what ‘trolling’ really is, I think Wikipedia has a great definition. According to Wikipedia, an internet troll is:

“…a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a newsgroup, forum, chat room, or blog) with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.“

Does this sound like some posts you’ve seen before? Now, let’s be clear: there are tons of internet trolls out there that are absolutely not on the pay roll. Most of these people are genuinely just messing with others to get a laugh, a reaction, or whatever. Not arguing on behalf of multi-billion dollar corporations for up to 8 hours per day.

There’s the real difference. And, besides common sense dictating that corporations would surely hire a fleet of internet warriors to protect their brand reputation in the age of open source online communication, we now know for sure that companies like Monsanto have in fact dedicated ‘entire departments’ to trolling scientists and ‘discrediting’ those who oppose their GMO creations.

Monsanto Paying Fleet of Trolls to ‘Discredit’

Surprisingly, it was actually a Monsanto employee that unintentionally let the truth behind their ‘discrediting operation’ slip in a conference with students that he may have forgotten was open to the public. In a conversation with students, Dr. William “Bill” Moar raved that Monsanto had established:

“An entire department” (waving his arm for emphasis) dedicated to “debunking” science which disagreed with theirs.”

That’s huge news. We told you about this first back on the 6th of April — but I am absolutely shocked how it has not been covered to the extent it should have. Because, after all, how does a company ‘discredit’ and ‘debunk’ those who go against their destructive, cancer-linked products? By attacking them online through blogs, comments, and character assassination. In other words, by internet trolling.

It’s so much easier to say someone is a ‘quack,’ or create some fictitious and anonymous accusation to plague their search data than it is to actually have a scientific debate on issues like Roundup’s admitted probable carcinogenic nature.

It also brings into question whether or not the Monsanto employee truly did ‘slip up’ or if he was attempting to help get the word out about the corporation he represents. You have to wonder if Dr. Moar was secretly passing off some information to the press in the form of a slip about his company.

Also see: 5 Things Shills Don’t Want You To Know

This is a question I often wondered after hearing about Coca-Cola’s similar operations that extended deeper than just internet trolls. After reading the March 16th article in the Associated Press that broke down how Coca-Cola paid off health leaders in exchange for these ‘experts’ to back their chemical-laden sodas as health drinks.

The AP report reads:

“In February, several of the experts wrote online posts for American Heart Month, with each including a mini-can of Coke or soda as a snack idea. The pieces — which appeared on nutrition blogs and other sites including those of major newspapers — offer a window into the many ways food companies work behind the scenes to cast their products in a positive light, often with the help of third parties who are seen as trusted authorities.”

A mini-can of Coke as a ‘snack idea.’ What amazing health leaders these individuals truly are.

Next time you’re scrolling through social media, YouTube, or even this website’s comment section, remember that the trolls attacking you for no apparent reason may in fact be receiving an annual salary. Checkout my video report on Monsanto’s secret ‘discrediting’ department and what it truly means for the natural health and alternative news movement:

Source: Natural Society


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6 thoughts on “Monsanto and Others Caught Paying Internet ‘Trolls’ to Attack Activists

  1. I believe that the first report of Monsanto’s discredit department was actually reported by the Daily Kos, “Monsanto’s “Discredit Bureau” Really Does Exist [UPDATE]” (FRI MAR 27, 2015) whereas the article links to one published April 6. The author of the Daily Kos article is the one who brought this story to light, and she be given credit: it was she who was in attendance at the conference where she saw and heard the exchange between the Monsanto employee and a member of the audience; it is her first-hand experience that is reported. Stephanie Hampton should be cited here – since it was her story, not that of Natural Society, that brought this to light in the first place. It’s a small matter in some ways, but nonetheless, I feel credit should be given to Stephanie Hampton.

    Otherwise, I have no complaints about the article, I believe this issue is widely under-reported, as is the actual fist-hand experience of scientists who have suffered from the disinformation and discrediting campaigns.

    An extreme example of trolling was discussed in “Self-proclaimed Monsanto employee trolling anti-GMO articles, claiming organic food ‘kills people’” by Melissa Dykes at Truthstream Media June 13, 2014 (originally published at The Daily Sheeple – but I prefer this publication).

    In my experience especially on anti-GMO threads, trolls, on the whole, are deeply misinformed, uneducated (about the topic discussed), and generally, have no understanding at all of the complexity of the dozens of issues related to GMOs. Yet, their sheer ignorance is not enough to keep them from coming onto anti-GMO pages and making pointless, baseless remarks, with no sense of shame or guilt. It’s almost sociopathic in its behavior. I have yet to meet a single person online or off, who is ant-GMO, who wants to go to any Facebook page that is strictly pro-GMO, and then make inflammatory remarks and engage in conflict with those people in those communities. The phenomenon seems to ONLY be prevalent within the pro-GMO advocate crowd. These pro-GMO advocates are playing right along with the biotech’s agenda, accepting the disinformation campaigns as factual information, and then relaying that crap at every opportunity, such as going out of their way to visit anti-GMO pages, just to make inflammatory and basically meaningless comments. What compels such people to play that role, to be puppets of the corporations whose only goal and interest is to make a profit without any regard to the health and well-being of the American people? I wonder if it is possible that they are slightly aware that they are completely and utterly wrong about the position in which they have become so emotionally invested in is threatened by our mere existence, and the only way they can validate their views is to attack people who don’t adhere to their world view.

    For years, Monsanto lied and said PCBs were safe too. With a history like theirs, and the other biotech companies, it’s beyond comprehension why so many people still cling to the messages of companies like Monsanto as they repeat those same messages over and over and over, doing the bidding of corporate interests without realizing they are being used that way, without recognizing that disinformation is par for the course – perhaps it is because actual research and verification require effort, and time, and energy – which so many of these pro-GMO advocates just aren’t willing to do.

    That Wikipedia reference to trolls also says: “Two studies published in 2013 and 2014 have found that people who are identified as trolls tend to have dark personality traits and show signs of sadism, antisocial behavior, psychopathy, and machiavellianism. The 2013 study suggested that there are a number of similarities between anti-social and flame trolling activities and the 2014 study suggested that the noxious personality characteristics known as the “dark triad of personality” should be investigated in the analysis of trolling, and concluded that trolling appears “to be an Internet manifestation of everyday sadism.” Their relevance is suggested by research linking these traits to bullying in both adolescents and adults. ….The 2013 study found that trolls often have a high expectation of what it means to be successful, which is higher than they are able to attain, and this results in them resenting others who think they are successful but who fall below their standards.”

    (I recommend: “Cyber Crime Journal The effect of de-individuation of the Internet Troller on Criminal Procedure implementation: An interview with a Hater” and “Trolls Just Want to Have Fun, both of which are cited in this quote).

  2. With these groups like Monsanto and their Agribusiness brethren, it’s not just internal departments dedicated to disinformation and online trolling. There are now legions of astroturf groups, many created by nefarious lobbyist Rick Berman, who are hired guns to do the same things, spreading disinformation through opeds, social media and especially comment sections, on many social welfare issues, including GMO labelling, human health and animal welfare. It’s disgraceful that they cannot be held to account.

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