Thinking Through Targeting: Social Media an Effective Tool for Influencing People and Society


  • Daniel Ionel Andrei Nistor Național Defence University Carol I



influence, targeting audience, social media, narrative, disinformation


Every day, a wide range of stakeholders target us on social media platforms in an attempt to influence our decisions and behaviour. These stakeholders might be politicians hoping to win over support from the public and secure votes, organizations trying to convey the benefits of their decisions and actions to us as citizens, or commercials trying to sell us something. We absorb new media content, and it can be difficult to distinguish between fake and real news in this redundant environment with widespread data invasion. Beginning with the INSCOP opinion survey from 2023, which investigates Romania's exposure to propaganda and disinformation, our goals are to analyse how audiences were affected by the disinformation narratives in Ukrainian war context, and look at the current social media trends related to this topic using the analytical techniques made available by new media instruments. We want to highlight how social media is the main channel used in Romania for disseminating false information, and we also want to draw attention to the connections that can be made between those who spread false information and the traits of the individuals they are trying to reach. The present paper is part of a larger PhD research program that focuses on consolidating a society’s security culture through better institutional strategic communication; therefore, all the findings will be used to this end.