Facebook has failed its users.
Updates and overhauls to Facebook’s user interface have caused a commotion in the past, but new changes are going beyond that and are absolutely destroying Facebook’s function as a social networking site.
Facebook is creating problems that are causing users to suffer and in a devious move are trying to sell the populace on a ‘solution’ that only makes the problem worse.
Behind the guise of Facebook’s crackdown on follower fraud, the site and the click farms in question are both growing and pocketing the money of unsuspecting social media users.
Almost everyone on Facebook has followers who they would rather not have to deal with. Creeps who follow silently, don’t like anything and probably aren’t even real friends. Usually they are easy to ignore, but not so much anymore.
Most people are familiar with click farms; favored monetization scam of the deepest dredges of the Internet. These people will do mundane or tedious tasks online for money, including ‘liking’ Facebook pages.
Because this activity is illegal, and the morals of workers being paid a single dollar for every 1000 likes are questionable at best, Facebook has tried hunting them down. In response, click farmers will cover their tracks by also liking pages that aren’t paid for.
This means that anyone on Facebook can be a victim of bogus followers. And there is no way to get rid of them.
This becomes a problem because Facebook uses your followers to judge how to promote content on the site.
Whenever a post is made, Facebook sends it out to a fraction of the user’s followers to gauge their reaction.
The more interaction the post receives, the more it is distributed, but the system works in reverse as well. Not surprisingly, click farmers and fake followers don’t really care about what you have to say.
The more of them a user has, the less publicity their posts get, even within their own circle of friends, as the phoneys bog down the system and make content look boring and uninteresting.
To help combat this downward trend of fakes ruining pages, Facebook has offered customized, paid advertising, rather than fixing their system to look around fakes.
For a small fee, users can have Facebook use targeted ads for content to reach people who care.
Derek Muller, who uses Facebook to advertise his channel Veritasium on Youtube, did just this in an experiment.
He created Virtual Cat, a page devoted to providing only the most pointless and mindless content, that only an idiot would follow, as he said in the page’s description.
Muller then paid for Facebook ads, targeting places that didn’t have click farms, and watched as over the course of few minutes as the budget vanished entirely for 39 likes.
Muller followed this with a post explaining the issue, and asking the followers to explain why they clicked like. Eight users saw the post, zero responded. On closer inspection, all the followers were click farm fakes.
Even with targeted advertising from Facebook itself, users are often followed by a multitude of bogus click farm likes. When this cuts down on the engagement on ones page, the solutions boil down to dealing with the issue and struggling to work around by hand, or paying for advertising to reach more people, including the fakes.
Facebook is making money just by the mere existence of click farms, and thus far has utterly failed to do anything significant about the problem.
Forget your Ex from high school and the unceasing flood of annoying FarmVille invites, Facebook is charging just to do what everyone signed up for in the first place.
Unless Facebook puts and end to this money grabbing scheme, there is no hope for the future of the site.