03/22/2018 El País
José Antonio Meade was applauded for over half a minute when Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto introduced him as the candidate to succeed him at an event held inside the National Palace in November of last year.
But the applause on Twitter was fake. Hundreds of accounts almost simultaneously tweeted out @JoseAMEade until the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate’s name became a trending topic, according to Alberto Escorcia, a Mexican reporter who specializes in network analysis.
And he is not the only one, says Escorcia. The frontrunner in the Mexican presidential race, Andrés Manuel López Obrador of the Together We'll Make History coalition, is also getting indirect support from fake Twitter accounts that follow one of his top aides, Ricardo Monreal.
For social media users in Mexico, it has become difficult to tell the difference between authentic and fake political discourse. Digital experts have detected that political parties are using bots (automated accounts) and trolls (humans who use fake accounts) at a rate unseen to date in the country.