Social Media

Big Brother is watching—make that trolling—you

A woman protests the surveillance of U.S. citizens by the NSA outside the Justice Department, January 17, 2014.
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Big Brother has been watching you—well, social media you, that is.

The government is studying how we behave on social media in order to better understand the influence of social media and to better wield it as tool for its agenda, according to The Guardian.

Read More UK legally allowed to spy on social media

Since 2011, the Defense Department's research department, Darpa, has put $8.9 million into a major research project to record and analyze social media activity on sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Reddit and Kickstarter. Among the people studied were Occupy activists, Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber, the British newspaper said.

The news comes at a particularly sensitive time, considering the uproar over Facebook's recent experiment in controlling emotions through news feeds and disclosures by former NSA analyst Edward Snowden about U.S. snooping.

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—By CNBC staff