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New release of VOST emails reveal depth of social media monitoring by authorities during August 12, 2017 Unite The Right rally...

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Emails obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request reveal the depth of social media monitoring by government officials during the August 12, 2017 Unite The Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. The monitoring was carried out by a little known group called VOST, or Virtual Operations Support Team, which is comprised of volunteers who report real-time intelligence gleaned from social media to officials. The team was activated by Albemarle County Emergency Management Coordinator Allison Farole.









In all, 23 emails were released in response to the request. The emails, dated between August 8, 2017 and August 15, 2017 offer valuable insight into how authorities gathered intelligence during this past summer's white nationalist events. Significant attention seemed to be given to both local journalists and multiple Left-leaning social justice and activist groups. There were significantly less emails released in relation to the Unite The Right rally as opposed to the large number r…