Islamic State: pioneers of the ‘digital caliphate’

The Islamic State may have lost its self-styled caliphate, but its barbaric back catalogue of grisly execution videos will continue to haunt the global imagination and serve as a template for how to sow terror, analysts say.

At the height of its reign over a vast chunk of Iraq and Syria in 2014-2015, the Sunni jihadist group had a huge digital footprint, flooding social media with slick videos lionising their fighters and showing the gruesome executions of “infidel” soldiers and civilians.

Today, its once-sophisticated propaganda machine, like its proto-state, has been reduced to rubble.