Thu06292017

LAST_UPDATEFri, 30 Jun 2017 8am

[Video] How Companies And Celebrities Pay For Fake 'Likes' On Social Media By Using Click Farms

Pic: YoutubePic: Youtube

Places like these are where all the fake adoration and fake fans on social media are created.

Rows upon rows of handphones all rigged up to wires and placed on specially constructed racks, this is what a 'click farm' looks like.

Footage secretly recorded inside such a set-up has recently emerged online, validating allegation that 'likes' can be artificially generated to get more advertising and endorsement revenue.

Rumours have been floating around for awhile now about how companies pay for fake 'likes' by employing the services of such 'click farms'.

In the recording which has since been posted on Youtube, a man speaking in Russian is describing the scene inside.

He mentions counting up to 10,000 handsets and mentions that there are thousands more phones in the same building all made for the same purpose, tech news portal Kotaku Australia reports.

The footage also shows a number of workers busy on computers although not directly on the handsets which are reportedly operated by computer programmes, or as it is referred to as 'bots'.

Pic: YoutubePic: Youtube

Pic: YoutubePic: Youtube

Since the rise of social media, click farms have become a way for people to ensure that something goes viral and attracts hits and the ever important advertising revenue.

Tech blogsite Zero Hedge highlighted the drawbacks of the 'likes' mechanism on social media accounts.

'The biggest draws of social networks also quickly became their biggest weaknesses, and it didn't take long to game the weakest link: that apparent popularity based on the size of one's following or the number of likes, which usually translates into power and/or money, is artificial and can be purchased for a price,' ZeroHedge reports.

This side industry appears to be growing too as social networking participants spend millions of dollars to appear more important, followed, prestigious, cool, or generally "liked" than they really are.

Media reports earlier this year had highlighted that scientists at USC and Indiana University reported findings that up to 15 percent of Twitter accounts could be fake.

If you do the math, that means out of the estimated 319 million monthly active users, as many as 48 million are manipulated by 'bots' engineered by click farms.

- mD