The study, conducted by text authentication specialist OrphAnalytics, looked at all 4,592 published so far by “Q” (who has only posted puzzlingly twice since the election). Using genomics-based stylometry, the analysts used an artificial intelligence technology that compares the frequency of character patterns and thus creates individual signatures regardless of the meaning of the text.
The authors concluded that there were two different authors of the Q posts and that this authorship shifted when Q moved his posts from the 4chan message board – claiming the board was “infiltrated” – to the more toxic area 8chan, which was later renamed 8kun. Ron Watkins was 8kun’s administrator until last month. He has also become Trump’s foremost QAnon whisperer and has received regular retweets from the Oval Office for his avid dissemination of unfounded conspiracy theories about the election results.
Both Watkinses adamantly deny that they are “Q”, despite OrphAnalytics’ promises that the next step is to compare their posts to “Q” s to see if they are indeed the likely authors. Neither man has ever requested a government security clearance.
Despite all of these setbacks, QAnon’s malevolent influence continues to grow, especially in a post-election environment where Trump has refused to admit defeat and his hardcore followers relentlessly seek reasons to believe that “we are up for the presidential election have won many times over ”. as he claimed.
A recent study of the prevalence of QAnon conducted by the Network Contagion Research Institute (NCRI) found that the unsubstantiated conspiracy theories that Dominion Voting Systems, an election software company, fraudulently gave Joe Biden his profit margin within days within the QAnon movement Were circulated of choice. The theorists, who mainly posted on 4chan and 8kun, claimed that the Dominion software switched the votes from Trump to Biden. These claims quickly made their way to Twitter and Facebook.
“According to an analysis by Advance Democracy for NBC News, one in seven tweets with the hashtag #Dominion between November 5th and 17th came from accounts that identified themselves as a QAnon supporter,” she noted.
QAnon-based conspiracy process has spread through social media, particularly to other movements prone to spreading misinformation and conspiracy theories, such as the anti-vaccination movement and other health-related conspiracy belief systems, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. A recent piece by Rolling Stone examined how it has become a dominant influence within the natural birthing community, often with catastrophic and tragic results.
Analysis of the QAnon phenomenon suggests that much of the recent surge in QAnon activity correlates with the recent COVID-19 pandemic: A Concordia University-based QAnon researcher named Marc-André Argentino posed a data sweep in the August finds QAnon has a 71% increase in Twitter content and a 651% increase in Facebook content since March. Much of this increase, he said, was related to the cult’s spread worldwide.
As the NCRI study reports:
The QAnon conspiracy has grown exponentially, seducing more and more people into a cultic belief that destroys families, divides communities, and even causes cases of deadly violence. QAnon followers are completely disconnected from reality, which is sometimes described by friends and family as “lost” to QAnon. The gamified ecosystem of the QAnon conspiracy cult, which attracts people with psychological rewards for solving hidden “clues,” is spiraling out of control.
The cult’s disruptive power is particularly evident in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, where followers have become militant, refusing to follow public health measures and unwilling to get vaccinated if the Medicines become available. What is particularly insidious about the QAnon theories is that they combine current health-related claims with long-standing anti-Semitic conspiracy theories that Jews plan to control the world through a secret elite cabal.
The QAnon community, for example, is widely advocating disinformation, claiming that a secret globalist cabal – led by George Soros, the Rothschild family, and Bill Gates, among others – is planning to use the vaccinations as an opportunity to implant microchips into unsuspecting citizens, so that this can be monitored and controlled. Others have claimed that 5G cell phone towers are the secret cause of the pandemic.
The extent of the dysfunction is likely to get immense as the QAnon cult gains followers. These dysfunctions occur at all levels: within families, between friends, within communities, and more generally in the democratic discourse of the nation and in politics itself. And because the endgame of the cult is one in which all its opponents are forcibly eliminated these problems are probably immense.
As the NCRI report notes:
This begs a threatening question: if QAnon is a game, what is the reward in the end? What is the player’s ultimate goal? What does QAnon want? The answer to this question is troubling as QAnon, led by Q and scene influencers, ultimately seeks the humiliation, incarceration, and even execution of its perceived cultural and political enemies who, as in alliance with the devil, dehumanize it.
Virginia Rep. Denver Riggleman, who is retiring from Congress this year, has been one of the few vocal Republican critics of the QAnon phenomenon. He told CNN that he intended to deliver an open reprimand on the floor of the house to the group – and to his colleagues who have tolerated it – as one of his final acts.
“A lot of people make fun of QAnon – they think it’s just a couple of idiots who believe anything on the internet,” Riggleman said. “But there is something sinister there. There is something much more dangerous going on here.”