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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Intelligence 1.4: Social Media Weaponry

An excellent Intelligence 1.4 last night - good plot, good banter, good action. But what made it excellent were the cyber details, which, as they should be, are the heart of the series.

The one I like best was Gabriel's invocation of social media to get the Syrian prison guards to think there was an imminent attack.  Online chatter is indeed taken seriously by all intelligence agencies, and the use of it to fake out an enemy - in this case, to get a prisoner out in the open, where Gabriel could rescue her - was a savvy move.  And, for icing on the cake, it seems that Gabriel is talking to our people back in the U.S., and getting them to put out the disinformation, when in fact and as we know, Gabriel is putting out the misleading info directly himself.   I'll probably cite this episode in the next edition of my book, New New Media, in the chapter that deals with the future of social media and terrorism.

The other notable aspect of this episode happens at the very end.  The President, we're told, is concerned about Gabriel going off script, which human beings, cyber-embedded or not, are of course prone to do. But the result is apparently that Lillian will have less off a free hand in putting Gabriel and Riley in the field.  As I mentioned in my review of Intelligence 1.2, this series seems to be moving along with transformative episodes much more quickly than other series on television, which I take to be a good thing.

So far, the series has also had a very good mix of different stories in the episodes.  Last night's Syrian action was, along with last week's Snowden show, the most literally all-but-ripped from the current headlines, and shows like that are always a pleasure to see.  Former President Finnigan, a Bill Clinton-like character, was also good to see on hand.

-> Hey, I had the pleasure of meeting John Dixon at the American Library Association conference this past weekend, and got a copy of his novel, Phoenix Island, which was the inspiration for Intelligence.
Look for a review of that novel here soon.

See also Intelligence Debuts ... Intelligence 1.2: Lightning Changes ... Intelligence 1.3: Edward Snowden and 24


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