Tag Archives: instagram

This chatbot is everything wrong with creepy dudes in the dating scene

by Alicia Marie Tan, Mashable

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Inside an Instagram Bot Farm

by Frizsina Eordogh, Motherboard

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Fake Accounts Still Plague Instagram Despite Purge, Study Finds

by Deepa Seetharaman, Wall Street Journal

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Instagram culls millions of follower bots: One user drops from 3.6m to 8 #morto

More than 18.9 million users (29pc of Instagram’s total) vanished yesterday amid the Instagram Rapture, as the image sharing social media service cracked down on a problem itself, Twitter and Facebook are constantly battling.

Justin Bieber lost 15pc of his followers, Kim Kardashian 5.5pc and Ma$e lost so many (dropping from 1.6 million to 272,000) that heapparently quit the service. (siliconrepublic.com)

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Friends, and Influence, for Sale Online

Bots have been around for years and they used to be easy to spot. They had random photos for avatars (often of a sultry woman), used computer-generated names (like Jen934107), and shared utter drivel (mostly links to pornography sites).

But today’s bots, to better camouflage their identity, have real-sounding names. They keep human hours, stopping activity during the middle of the night and picking up again in the morning. They share photos, laugh out loud — LOL! — and even engage in conversations with each other. And there are millions of them.

These imaginary citizens of the Internet have surprising power, making celebrities, wannabe celebrities and companies seem more popular than they really are, swaying public opinion about culture and products and, in some instances, influencing political agendas. (Nick Bilton, NYTimes.com)

There are several services that allow social media users to buy bots, which can make celebrities appear more popular and even influence political agendas.

Image: New York Times

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Watch Out for the Identity-Stealing Spambots of Instagram

The latest crop of spambots on Instagram are employing a trick even slimier than just buying fake followers: They’re stealing profiles. As The Verge reported today, some Instagram users are getting followed by their bot doppelgängers, profiles made up entirely from their ripped-off images.

This goes down because Instagram bot makers are lazy (not to mention bad at making life choices). They don’t want to come up with thousands of fake-yet-realistic digital personas, especially since the more active accounts they have control over, the more money they can make selling follows and likes from these accounts on the underground market for Instagram follows and likes.

Identity-stealing bots aren’t new on social media. Facebook and Twitter have had them for years. They’re not even new on Instagram. Instagram users have been complaining about them since at least 2012. (Kate Knibbs, Gizmodo)

Watch Out for the Identity-Stealing Spambots of Instagram

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