Facebook Purges Thousands of Fake Accounts, Business Pages Lose Fans
September 27, 2012 8:23 AM
Fake account purge cuts Likes for many pages
We'd wager that most Facebook users have seen friend requests from fake accounts before. Typically, these accounts have a single picture of an attractive woman and no other content to speak of. The same fake accounts are often used to game the Facebook "Like" system making businesses and other content appear more popular than they really are.
Facebook began purging
this week, and the result has seen some business pages loss tens of thousands of fans. Social game developer Zynga is the owner of one Facebook fan page that lost a huge number of fans.
The page for Zynga's Texas HoldEm Poker saw its fan count drop by 96,000. Facebook is removing illegitimately created accounts and deleting Likes added by malware, compromised accounts, or from deceiving users.
The purging of fake accounts is part of Facebook's integrity improvements that were announced last month. Facebook stated, “On average, less than 1% of Likes on any given Page will be removed.”
While 96,000 is a lot of Likes to lose, Zynga has 63 million fans. If you do the math, losing 96,000 fans is only 0.15%.
Other businesses are reporting a more significant loss due to the crackdown on illegitimate accounts.
reports that one business owner claims his page went from 7,100 Likes per day to 5,800 per day for an 18% decline.
Eliminating fake accounts and Likes should be a good thing for both Facebook users and businesses because it will allow users to get a better idea of how popular something is, and it will allow brands to get a more accurate idea of how fans perceive posts and content about their brand.
"This is about the Internet. Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
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