…and a pinch of salacious spice
In a piece earlier this week, we wrote about what makes disinformation particularly appealing to our brains. A recurring element? Salacious content. Of the seven key factors, which were identified by a recent anthropological study, five relate to our base instincts: sex, disgust, deviance, gossip, and celebrities. We humans are funny creatures – fascinated by all things sex, gore, horror, and anything else that shocks our socks off. In order to hack the attention economy and drive virality, disinformation is designed to feed these very proclivities. The pro-Kremlin media has practically turned this baiting into an art form. The UN, for example, is allegedly imposing sex education in schools that leads to earlier sexual activity, teen pregnancy, abortion, impotence, and – worst of all! – "homosexual inclination". The Kremlin, as we know, is obsessed with the West's supposed perversion of "traditional family values", never passing up an opportunity to sensationalize the "moral decay" of liberal-democratic values and the corresponding rights of women and sexual minorities. Stockholm's recent pride parade, for example, was rebranded by the pro-Kremlin media as a march of "same-sex perverts" headed by the Commander-in-Chief of the Swedish Armed Forces.
Honestly? The Kremlin just needs to calm down, drop the homophobia, and listen to some Taylor Swift.