Fake Twitter Followers

Based on this USA Today article (via Richard Fernandez), showing that many of Obama’s twitter followers are phony baloney, my first thought was this would be a great tactic for gun control groups to use, given their lack of any real grassroots energy. The tool can be found here. First I checked myself, and found 80% of my peeps are good, 16% are inactive, and only 4% are phony.

CSGV are 88% good, 12% inactive, and they have no fakes. This isn’t too surprising, because they have been gaining followers largely through following large numbers of people and asking for follows back, which is a legitimate tactic, and usually works.

Brady, however, is a different story. The tool lists only 20% of their users as being good. The rest of their followers, some 77%, are inactive. Only 3% are fake, but with that many inactive, it’s safe to say that CSGV probably has more engaged followers than Brady.

VPCInfo has about the same mix as I do, 79% good, 18% inactive, and 3% fake. He also has fewer followers than I do. This isn’t too surprising, because Sugarmann has been phoning it in for a few years now on the issue overall, and doesn’t really seem to have any kind of social media strategy other than being there.

NRA actually doesn’t look too great. The NRANews is 60% good, 31% inactive, and 9% fake. The NRA main feed is 54% good, 36% inactive, and 10% fake. Interesting.

I think it’s safe to say that no one in this issue seems to be buying friends. So why such appalling numbers for Brady, and even NRA’s don’t look so good? I wouldn’t be surprised if at some point Brady encouraged their followers to get on social media, and a lot did, and promptly got off. Gun owners trying Twitter, and getting frustrated or bored with it could also explain NRA’s numbers. I’ve generally found Twitter to be a bit like a garden. Every once in a while, you have to pull weeds. I’ve found TwitBlock to be a pretty good for that, but if you have a lot of followers, it can take quite a while to scan your whole list.

9 thoughts on “Fake Twitter Followers”

  1. Not surprising that even the NRA seems to have a huge # of “fake” followers. I read an article this week about online “fan” reviews that said at minimum a third of all “customer” or (for books) “reader” reviews are faked, generally posted by the company, author, or those they employ to write the bogus “5-star” ratings for them. This includes major online retailers like Amazon, where customer reviews are a major, perhaps the biggest, factor in purchasing decisions. Authenticity and authenticating for online postings is still in their infancy after all.

  2. As with our other recent discussions, I wonder whether the dominant demographic of an interest group would explain some of these statistics?

    This is probably no surprise, since I collect Social Security, but I just don’t “get” the whole social media thing. I was peer-pressured into Facebook for a year or so, then just took it down completely. I feel no motivation at all to go near Twitter.

    I could easily imagine someone like myself being “on the fence” about participation, trying it for awhile, then shrugging and giving it up — creating an “inactive” statistic.

  3. 3% fake, 9% inactive, 88% good, and twitblock says none of my followers are spam (at least this month, I run it periodically to clear out the crap).

  4. I’ve got 84/13/3. It seems most of us fall w/in a margin.

    ISRA had similar numbers to the NRA 65/26/9. What are the other gun groups? VCDL, SAF, GOA etc?

  5. 100% Real.

    I’m actually surprised since I know I’m followed by a few spammers I haven’t blocked yet.

  6. I *technically* have both a Facebook and a LinkedIn account, and I *know* I’m supposed to be diligent at maintaining it…especially now that I’ve been laid off for about three weeks, and am in the middle of looking for work. But like Andy above, I’ve only been able to use both for about a year, and then it became a chore to maintain.

    It’s mostly because of this I’m avoiding Twitter like the plague…although I’m in the process, however slowly, of trying to “re-activate” my Social Media accounts.

  7. Right now I’m 0% fake, 6% inactive, and 94% active.

    But that’s a recent development. Until I locked down my twitter account and began to require approval of people following me, I seemed to get 3 or 4 spam type porn followers a day. My wife saw some of them, and got pissed off because she thought twitter was like facebook and I was actually friends (or otherwise had some interactions) with them.

    I would assume anyone who has an open twitter feed would have a high percentage of fake followers. If your a nationally known organization, that’s only going to be higher.

Comments are closed.