How Does Disinformation Spread?
This fake story was first posted on Russian propaganda's new site and was then amplified by Russian-controlled bots and other disinformation news accounts until the claim was picked up by conservative papers on a quick deadline.
It worked because the headline was eye-catching and easily believable because it played into a certain worldview. Unfortunately, it was not true.
If Ted Cruz's communication staff had paused to consider the story and its truthfulness, they would have recognized the warning flags of a fake.
Unfortunately, social media conditions us to share without thought. Our news cycles are so fast that they create a perception that we must share quickly to be relevant. That is what our adversaries are counting on.