Twitter Exposé: Are You Being Scammed On Twitter via Dubious Accounts?

| December 30, 2011 | 0 Comments

We’re all familiar with the increasingly popular act of “buying” or paying social media firms to increase your followers on various social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Presidential hopeful, Newt Gingrich has taken the practice to a whole different level, as search firm PeekYou has revealed that 92% of Gingrich’s Twitter followers are FAKE! I must admit that when my editor in chief first pitched this story to me, I couldn’t even wrap my head around the fact that the team for such a well known politician would allow this to happen. As explained,  there isn’t any actual proof that Gingrich paid for the 92% of fake followers, but we do have numbers to support the fact that they’re fake. Of Gingrich’s 1.3 million Twitter followers, only about 106,055 are real people.

To make matters worse, Gingrich has bragged about the number of Twitter followers he has, citing that as a reason for why he’ll be a great fit for the GOP Presidential candidate in 2012. Back in August, Gingrich hilariously responded to a news article about his number of Twitter followers versus fellow republican Michele Bachmann’s followers, stating “It turned out I have six times as many Twitter followers as all the other candidates combined, but it didn’t count because if it counted I’d still be a candidate; since I can’t be a candidate that can’t count. So we’ve been a little bit like a sailing ship in the middle of a hurricane in which we are sailing straight into the teeth of the media, and that slowed us down.” Not really sure where he was going with those metaphors, but the point is that Gingrich really feels that his number of Twitter followers shows his popularity amongst 2012 voters, when 92% of his followers are actually fake accounts and spambots.

As someone who’s very interested in social media from a business and marketing standpoint, this brings us back to the question- how in the world could Gingrich’s staff see the caliber of followers they were getting day after day and not look deeper into the accounts? Did they not know that 92% of their followers were fake, or did they not care and just liked the way 1.3 million Twitter followers sounded? Let us know your thoughts on the Gingrich Twitter scandal! While this type of practice has reached an all time high we advise you to not get caught in the hype of high twitter numbers when it relates to doing business with someone because of a perceived notion that they are popular. Here are some signs to look for: Are the people that someone is being followed by have 1-10 followers themselves? Does the same avatar appear on on multiple followers of that particular individual’s account? In the days to come we will be publishing screen shots of accounts we suspect that are nothing more than fake accounts dubbing their audience.

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