#rp19 speaker Michal Hvorecký: How Eastern Europe resists hatred

Michal Hvorecký, born 1976, lives in Bratislava. In his novel "Troll" he describes Eastern Europe in a dystopian near future. An army of trolls dominates the Internet, commenting and rushing. Hvorecky regularly writes articles for the FAZ, the ZEIT and numerous magazines. In Slovakia he is committed to the protection of freedom of press and resisting anti-democratic developments.

According to Hvorecký, internet trolls in Eastern Europe intend to create insecurity, spread a hostile image of the West and destabilize the democratic order. They advertise withdrawals from the EU and NATO, create confusion, discord and chaos. Above all, they try to convince people that there is no truth, weakening civil society. 

The fact that there are troll factories is no longer a secret. There is abundant evidence of paid online campaigns in Hvorecký's home country Slovakia, sponsored mainly by Russia. But even the big mainstream Slovak parties have tried to manipulate public opinion with paid commentators.

Internet trolls create fake profiles, spread invented news, build propaganda websites and spread virally manipulative content to sow fear.

You can find Michal Hvorecký’s session here.