“There are tons of people like this,” mentioned Shannon McGregor, an assistant professor of communication on the College of Utah who research social media. “He took these memes to their most violent extreme, but this is a pretty big world on social media.”
The genesis of Mr. Sayoc’s partisan awakening might by no means be identified, however hints of it first appeared on his Fb feed in early 2016, as the first season for the presidential election was beginning.
That February, he posted a link to a conspiracy concept video on YouTube titled, “Is Barack Obama THE ANTICHRIST — 100% PROOF Is There!” Days later, he posted a second YouTube video, “Satan Sent Obama to Destroy America,” and a clip that includes Sean Hannity, the Fox Information host, which was referred to as, “MUST HEAR: Sean Exposes Illegal Immigrant Crime Stats.” He posted a number of anti-Obama movies a number of instances on his feed, interspersed with tales about private finance and his favourite soccer gamers.
By the summer time, Mr. Sayoc’s social media exercise was all politics, on a regular basis.
On Fb, he posted tales from Infowars, World Web Each day, Breitbart and different right-wing web sites. His posts, which hardly ever included commentary aside from the links, confirmed a fascination with Islamist terrorism, unlawful immigration and anti-Clinton conspiracy theories. (On one publish, a YouTube link, he wrote: “The Clinton have funneled two billion dollars through Clinton foundation.”)
In October, a month earlier than Mr. Trump’s election, Mr. Sayoc posted a sequence of photographs of himself at a Trump marketing campaign rally, watching from the gang in a crimson “Make America Great Again” hat.
Regardless of his prolific posting, Mr. Sayoc doesn’t seem to have gained a large viewers. His Twitter account was adopted by fewer than 1,200 people as of Friday morning, and though he had practically three,000 associates on Fb, a lot of his posts have been by no means commented on or shared.
He did, nonetheless, show an uncommon tendency to publish tales and pictures again and again, generally dozens of instances.