15% Twitter Accounts Are Fake

By Xah Lee. Date: .

twitter gives you followers when you stopped posting for a few days

Now, let me say what's the twitter business. Am surprised people don't know. But not really, cuz that's what the social media has conditioned people's brain.

First, what's a nobody type on twitter. That's people, who don't have a trustworthy profile photo (e.g. A real face), and or use a name like batman. Who post random, irregular. No care. And in general, such people have just a few followers. Twitter, no care about such people, cuz such people don't bring twitter traffic, and or dont make twitter look good. Many nerd types, especially the conspiracy concerned, privacy concerned, frindge of society, are that type. (and they no care, partly cuz, they tried but can't get over the establishment ways.).

Now, twitter is a money grabbing skum. Basically, the only thing it cares is lots traffic, lots accounts, so it can make more money. Take this as a premise. I can explain or convince why if you doubt that. So, lots of posts, and accounts, is what twitter wants. Now, if you are a average regular poster (just 1k or 2k followers, but not a nobody type), twitter wants you to stay on twitter. When it sees you haven't posted for a few days, it gives you new followers, incentive for you to come back or post again. The way it gives you new followers, is by showing suggestions to others, or by letting your posts reach more people.

But if you do post regularly, twitter does not let your post reach new people, or do much to suggest others to follow you. It follows the usual algorithm to limit and control who sees your post. Only when you stopped using twitter for few days, it starts to otherwise.

15% Twitter Accounts Are Fake

15% account on twitter are fake, sold by companies. And, apparently, many celebrities, politicians, actually buy them. Also, twitter of course knew, but don't really do anything about it.

Here's New York Times article.

twitter fake accounts nyt 2018-01-27 cDhSh
twitter fake accounts, NYT 2018-01-27
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[The Follower Factory By Nicholas Confessore, Gabriel J.X Dance, Richard Harris And Mark Hansen. At https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/01/27/technology/social-media-bots.html ]

(New York Times is often sjw fake news. This article seems a good one.)

the follower usually cost 1 cent each. e.g. 1k followers cost you $10.

apparently, many normal people sans controversy (actors, tv star, olympic athletes, businessmen, politicians, and porn stars), who may already have over 10 thousand followers, still, went out and buy followers.

because number of followers is the number 1 thing we naively judge legitimacy.

apparently, it's severe enough that those public figure people actually depend on number of followers for their career to thrive. e.g. spend few hundred bucks to buy followers to save the tens of thousands bucks you make. (e.g. if you are reporter, or do public relations, or book author, your number of followers helps a lot, as indicator of authority or qualification.)

Number of followers translates to money. If you have lots followers, say 1 million followers, each sponsored tweet gets you $2k or so. Apparently there are quite a lot girls, thriving on social networks (e.g. instagram), making more money than professionals by selling brands.

one of the techniques in creating fake account is that they go thru twitter, suck up profile photos, and color shift the photo a bit (to avoid detection), and use that as the fake account's photo.

CNN's Hilary Rosen @hilaryr is the one who bought the MOST twitter followers in that report. She bought 500k followers few years ago. She currently has 289k follower. (fake accounts drops off over the years) Goto her account, and you can spot fake followers easily.

Google Twitter Crimes