If you were ever hesitant to join pro-Nationalist, or Anti SJW groups on Facebook, despite the fact that you may (at least to some degree) follow these ideologies and desire to connect with like-minded people, your head may be in the right place. Extreme feminist and proud Antifa supporter Megan Squire is publicly out to ruin your life. She posted recently on her blog, boasting of her many discoveries within the hard right Facebook groups.
“I have built a large dataset of far-right extremists in order to learn about their movement and figure out how they operate so that we can keep our communities safe.” Megan writes as she’s likely trying to simultaneously pick out her new superhero name. Maybe something like, “Free Speech Destroyer” would be appropriate. Nevertheless, Megan had an epiphany which led her down the road of invading our privacy:
I wondered: Do groups from different ideologies share members in common? Which groups have the most members in common? I originally had 9 different far-right ideologies in the classification system, and have since expanded to 12, as shown in the table below. To classify each group or event, I evaluated the keywords present in the group name and description, as well as symbols found in the group cover photo, and other content if viewable (discussion comments, photos, and so on.) In the future, perhaps we could use this training data as part of a machine learning approach to build a classifier for new, unseen groups…
Of course, she didn’t just think about doing it, there would be no reason to write about this if that’s all there was to it. She went on to waste countless hours researching different right-wing Facebook groups from the Conservative to the Alt-Right.
“Below is a diagram (created in Gephi using Fruchterman-Reingold layout) showing co-membership between groups from five of the ideologies: Alt-Right, Neo-Confederate, White Nationalist, Anti-Government, and Neo-Nazi. Lines (“edges”) between groups (“nodes”) indicate that the two groups share at least 10 members in common. Larger nodes mean the group has more members.
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In the center of the diagram, in purple, is the Unite the Right (UtR) event. Below is a close-up view of the groups and events that had the highest co-membership with UtR. Here I have highlighted the UtR node, and its connected nodes show up with their color (nodes that are disconnected from UtR in this diagram are “greyed out”).
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As the diagram shows, UtR not only had a very high number of nodes it shared members with, but the nodes it shared with were from a wide variety of groups from all the other ideologies: Neo-Confederate (red) groups, militias and Oath Keepers (blue), White Nationalist groups (green), Alt-Right groups (yellow), and even Neo-Nazi groups (black).”
So yes, she’s seeing what groups you’re in and she isn’t afraid to make her discoveries public. Wired praised Megan in a recent article titled “Meet Antifa’s Secret Weapon Against Far Right Extremists”. Implying that Antifa members are somehow not extremists… They wrote of Megan,
Whack-a-Mole, her creation, is a set of programs that monitor some 400,000 accounts of white nationalists on Facebook and other websites and feeds that information into a centralized database. The first big test of Whack-a-Mole came just before the white supremacist Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville on Saturday, August 12. In the weeks before, because of her database, Squire could see that nearly 700 white supremacists on Facebook had committed to attend the rally, and by perusing their posts, she knew they were buying plane tickets and making plans to caravan to Charlottesville. Her research also showed that some of them had extensive arrest records for violence. She sent a report to the SPLC, which passed it on to Charlottesville and Virginia law enforcement. She also called attention to the event on anarchist websites and spread the word via “affinity groups,” secret peer-to-peer Antifa communication networks.
Megan says she wants to do more to silence whoever she deems to be a “Nazi” and the media are singing her praises for it. She insists that what she’s doing is not only legal, but it’s the only way for her to stop anyone whose remotely right wing from speaking. In fact, I’ll probably be the first name on her hit list just for writing this “hateful” article. So just be careful, and be aware that Antifa and SJW’s are lurking in your groups and on your profile, waiting for the opportune moment to strike.