Social media's first war: Here's how TikTok activists are battling Putin's troops
Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin wearing a Sitka Gear camouflage. Sitka jackets are manufactured in Bozeman, Montana. Photo via the Kremlin.

The international community of leaders and foreign policy experts have gathered for a coalition that can combat Russian President Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine. Meanwhile, tanks and soldiers rolled over the borders, bombing schools, grocery stores and apartment buildings.

Discussing it on Wednesday, The Daily Beast podcast "Fever Dreams" explained that Putin's propaganda is no match for TikTok.

“It was incredibly frustrating because we had been hearing from sources in Western governments for a while that, ‘hey, you should really pay attention to this,’” said reporter Adam Rawnsley. “There was sort of a divergence of two camps of people who were watching what was going on around Ukraine: there were the people who were paying attention to the statements and the communications. And then there were the people who were paying attention to where the military equipment was.”

This is the first war in the era of social media. The result has been a flood of images exposing the tragedies of death and carnage on the streets of Ukraine for the world to see. It also makes it impossible for anyone to sneak through any city or small town without being exposed.

READ MORE: Why did Putin wait until Trump lost to invade Ukraine?

There's also the problem that many Russian soldiers are reportedly confused. They may have orders to bomb one town or the other, but it has been reported that the troops don't know how to get there. As a result, many are using their cell phones and GPS maps to search for routes they can drive their tanks. It inadvertently exposed their positions.

Since then, Google and Apple have removed the ability to use their apps in Ukraine to protect the citizens there.

But it was the TikTok videos that truly helped identify how many soldiers were where and even how to identify some of the soldiers through facial recognition. One group of Russian ballistic missile operators were tied to a fraternity that regularly posts photos with a bag of dildos a.k.a. "bag of d*cks."

“This is the sort of dystopia of modern life: here’s these guys on a beach somewhere throwing big dreadnought dildos at each other’s faces,” Rawnsley said. “And then three pictures later, these guys messing around with the dildos, here they are manning a nuclear installation.”

Listen to the full podcast here.