Big Brother Wants to Be Your Friend
Politics

Big Brother Wants to Be Your Friend

The CIA joined the social media age in 2014 by blasting out the satirical message “We can neither confirm nor deny that this is our first tweet.” That inaugural post to Twitter, retweeted more than 300,000 times, was followed by CIA director John Brennan announcing the agency’s new social media strategy. “We have important insights to share, and we want to make sure that unclassified information about the agency is more accessible,” he said in a press release. Those insights have since included photos of vintage spy gear, a tweet reading “No, we don’t know where Tupac is” and the agency wishing itself a happy birthday with a patriotic cupcake. The agency and the media have found it adorable. “The CIA is scary and involved in undemocratic things, so they have to represent themselves as innocent, open, liberal and tolerant,” says Jason Stanley, a Yale philosophy professor and author of How Propaganda Works. “It’s tough having a terrifying security apparatus like the CIA in a…