Geopolitical Perspective Of Disinformation Flows In The Western Balkans

Disinformation and fake news are not just a media problem, but a security problem which may hinder realization of the most important strategic objectives in the Western Balkans. It is imperative for all the countries in the region to establish close mutual cooperation and access EU and NATO expertise in creating resilience and response strategies towards foreign malign influences, indicates the analysis of the geopolitical perspective of disinformation flow in the Western Balkans, conducted within the framework of the project Western Balkans Anti-Disinformation Hub: Exposing Malign Influences through Watchdog Journalism.

In recent years, foreign malign influence in the Western Balkans has intensified their efforts for undermining democratic development of the region. Harmful external pressures make use
of key political developments and events within the countries, but also manipulate with global issues such as COVID-19 and most recently – the Russian aggression on Ukraine. Since the start of the all-out Russian invasion in February 2022 there have been increased efforts by the Kremlin and its WB proxies, through massive production of fake news to approve of the aggression and to blame NATO, the EU and the USA as main culprits for “provoking” the war.

This research report maps key trends and patterns in disinformation dissemination throughout the region in the period January-December 2022 as well as foreign interests spread through propaganda and influence campaigns seen through geopolitical lens. It takes into account multiple determinants of the region: its geographical position, culture and history of the peoples as well as national needs and expectations. The research report observes the specifics of the region as a whole and separately for each country. It focuses on the phenomenon of fake news, disinformation and foreign propaganda distributed through public media and social networks that is gaining huge potential for geopolitical influence and turns into security threat. It is a phenomenon which enables a small number of actors to abuse social networks and media ecosystems for destructive influence.


Recommendations For Joint Action For Building Societal Resilience Towards Malign Influences Of Disinformation

As a result of the research process and the data analysis within the activities in the fight against disinformation, supplemented through the process of open consultations between the Metamorphosis Foundation for Internet and Society, the Council of Media Ethics of Macedonia (SEMM), the Association of Journalists of Macedonia, the Independent Trade Union of Journalists and […]

Visualization: Can we recognize digital addiction?

Remember: Excessive use of smartphones can negatively influence your life. Excessive social media use can lead to increased isolation, anxiety, less physical activity, depression, etc. Internet addiction can make it difficult to differentiate between reality and the virtual world, so use it with care. This visualization is available in English, Macedonian, Albanian, Serbian and Montenegrin […]

Disinformation trends Western Balkans

This report is based on a continuous monitoring process of domestic media in North Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo, Serbia, Montenegro, and BosniaHerzegovina conducted within the framework of the regional project Western Balkans Anti-Disinformation Hub: Exposing Malign Influences through Watchdog Journalism. It presents an overview of disinformation trends and narratives, their distribution between countries, and their sources […]