New York Times: Paging Big Brother: In Amazon’s Bookstore, Orwell Gets a Rewrite. “As fake and illegitimate texts proliferate online, books are becoming a form of misinformation. The author of ‘1984’ would not be surprised.”
CNN: Websites that peddle disinformation make millions of dollars in ads, new study finds. “As the United States gears up for another presidential election, aware of the role online disinformation played in 2016, the business of publishing false or extremist content online remains a lucrative one. At least $235 million in revenue is generated annually from ads running on extremist and disinformation websites, according to a new study from the Global Disinformation Index provided exclusively to CNN ahead of its September release.” Lying is more lucrative than telling the truth? Now there’s a thought that’ll make your mouth sour.
The Big Smoke: Here’s how easy it is to become a fake Instagram celebrity. “Marketing agency Mediakix conducted an investigation into the world of online fraudsters, creating two fake Instagram influencer accounts. One was a lifestyle and fashion focused Instagram model – ‘calibeachgirl310’ – the other, a travel photographer. To help create the perfect fake account, Mediakix hired a real person – a model in fact – and created the content through a one-day photo shoot. The second account, ‘wanderingggirl,’ however was created with nothing but stock images.”
ZDNet: Fake influencer follower fraud to cost companies $1.3B in 2019. “The scale of fraud in the emerging influencer market is far higher than we realize, according to a new report. Globally, influencer marketing spend is up to $8.5 billion in 2019, and the industry is forecast to hit up to $10 billion in 2020, according to research by Mediakix.”
ModernRetail: Facebook ramps up customer feedback surveys to crack down on misleading e-commerce ads. “When Facebook first announced the surveys last June, it said that users could give feedback by visiting their Ads Activity tab. But, shortly after rolling out the feature, Facebook started inserting these surveys into users’ News Feeds, increasing the likelihood that they would answer them.”
TechCrunch: Facebook still full of groups trading fake reviews, says consumer group. “Which? says it found more than 55,000 new posts across just nine Facebook groups trading fake reviews in July, which it said were generating hundreds ‘or even thousands’ of posts per day. It points out the true figure is likely to be higher because Facebook caps the number of posts it quantifies at 10,000 (and three of the ten groups had hit that ceiling).”
University of California, Irvine: Beware: Fake Twitter accounts exploit emergencies to spread misinformation. “When earthquakes, firestorms or hurricanes strike, people often turn to Twitter for instant updates from government agencies, news outlets and neighbors. But user beware: networks of automated fake Twitter accounts, or ‘bots,’ exploit exactly these emergency situations to spread propaganda or misinformation, says University of California, Irvine sociology graduate student Richard Gardner.”