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Our ‘Theory’ Confirmed: Social Media is Largely Faked

ILLUSTRATION: Gary Waters/Getty/Ikon

Winter Watch has long maintained that about half the presence on social media sites is bogus and a scam. We now have confirmation that our “tinfoil hat conspiracy theory” is true, and we were right all along.

Former Reddit CEO Ellen Pao on Wednesday posted the following tweet following a New York Magazine article that revealed the extent to which Internet traffic metrics from some of the largest tech companies are overstated or fabricated.

The New York Magazine article by Max Read goes much deeper, asserting that the people are fake, the businesses are fake, the content is fake, our politics are fake.

Read notes that “studies generally suggest that, year after year, less than 60 percent of web traffic is human.” Some years, “a healthy majority of it is bot.”

At the core of this is advertising fraud, one of the most profitable criminal enterprises in the world, generating tens of billions of dollars a year. That’s the view of Dr. Augustine Fou, cybersecurity and ad-fraud researcher who released a Slideshare presentation on LinkedIn describing the state of digital ad fraud in 2018.

An article in Which-50, which follows the internet, states, “Some people might consider it extraordinary that technology businesses — businesses that claim they can discern the intent of one buyer from a billion in milliseconds — somehow can’t recognize when millions of ads a month are served to a single unique user ID in, for instance, Belarus or China.”

Although the social media fraudster companies fail to detect bots- so as to inflate their revenue, they also use artificial intelligence as cover to ban or shadow ban actual challenges to their regimes. We are shadowed banned about everywhere. When truther sites are shut down- on say You Tube, those voices typically are quieted and give up in despair and disgust. This is turn makes social media even more fake and less geniune.

Dr. Fou indicates that bot detection technology is failing to pick up on most of it. And “deep fakes” are not just ripping off advertisers. As an actual human, we can see bot behavior being used for malicious intent on social media boards such at Reddit and Voat. Often, we wonder if commenters are really that stupid and evil. I would suggest there is deliberate spoofing going on — to for instance make it seem that large numbers of people who comment are extreme racists and have zero social skills or intelligence.

For example, as I was doing some research for our post yesterday on Chinese parasite guild operations, we came across this post at Voat. Nobody had anything of value to add to the important core topic. But that didn’t stop 113 comments from piling in. Not only was the commentary worthless, but it was a spew of (fake) racism and rank stupidity.

Also notice the fake voting for the more racist comments. Who would actually up-vote 44 to 1 “Noseberg Shekelman’s” fake comment? The answer: mostly paid sock puppet bots. I firmly believe now that 80 to 90 percent of those comments are bot faked. And if you are a real slinger engaging in this juvenile behavior, ask yourself if it helps, or harms the cause?

Here is a sampling of the top staged deception comments under the Voat post. Bastante!

Additionally this suggests someone among the usual suspects is paying to ruin Voat as an alternative to censored sites like Reddit, and to create fake personas of nasty racists. Torchy tells me she was at Voat and that the second the bots picked up that she was female, a slew of disconnected off topic misogynist comments suddenly appeared. Or in this Chinese parasite guild case it could be Chinese bots targeting the topic of the original post. That way normal readers are recoiled. My personal reaction is to give up on humanity when I see this non-stop.

It also serves to boost the internet censorship narrative. How about making being human the litimus test of who participates online and ban the bots? What a novel concept.

This also has a neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) bandwagon effect for the more impressionable to infer such behaviors are edgy and maybe even cool. Then, if someone like Winter Watch writers offer a more serious article on the Chinese privatization of African assets, we can be lumped into the same twisted litany. One of the latest bot tricks being used on us is to declare “this is a shitty article” followed by off-topic comments that seem to trigger on one word in the headline.

I am interested in doing a podcast on the under appreciated topics raised in this post, as well as the state of the media and entertainment. If you have some ideas about who is running these sock-puppet bot operations, so much the better. The podcast could be with someone new or with one of my previous regulars. Please get in touch. – RW

11 Comments on Our ‘Theory’ Confirmed: Social Media is Largely Faked

  1. Hi – before writing much I need to verify that I can connect here. I’m the former Stonemason who wrote on Dailykos over ten years ago. Went mostly blind Now getting vision back. Makes life hard. Let alone feral cyber entities feigning personhood. Hope we connect again. Your blog has come to be one of our favorites (hubby & II -he does most of the reading).

  2. A big advertising industry event from April:
    The big marketing players openly questioned the reach and effectiveness of the big tech platform companies. Useful for your podcast Russ.
    Notice how ‘layers’ of technology emerge and are superceded; People were flushed off web 1.0 platforms such as Yahoo and onto Facebook/instagram/whatsapp (all same company) scared off with massive data breaches etc. Now Facebook is old tech and it seems likely a newer, far more sophisticated self service surveillance system is ready and will be launched soon. everyone will migrate to a shiny new online space with exciting new AI attributes, a cryptocurrency etc and FB will be quietly sunsetted.
    The metrics have always been BS – these platforms are all about snooping and control mechanisms. Alvin Toffler predicted ‘demassification’: a process ‘in which a relatively homogeneous social collectivity (or one conceptualized as such) is broken down into (or reconceptualized in terms of) smaller, more diverse elements’. This is the prize for big social networks: compartmentalize people into echo chambers and bombard them with confusing distractions and dead ends.

    • Hit post too soon: the online forums are toxic wastelands dominated, as you suggest, by automated sock puppets and armies of 3rd world Hasbara and other agenda altering slaves jamming the channels. A combination of bots, humans and algos ensure the standard of discourse is kept low and confusing…


      from oct 2017
      Google’s $350 Billion Haircut
      The math’s not pretty on digital advertising’s future revenues. That could mean a massive devaluation for both Google and Facebook.’

      More evidence of fakery by the big tech platforms

  3. There’s good racism and bad racism. The good racism occurs when you recognize your own and you want to protect your own from attacks such as a demographic attack which has been mounted by enemies within etc. And there is bad racism in which entire groups are denounced for, for instance, lower IQ which—while it may be the case—it is something they can’t help. Written by a non-bot.

  4. We never evolved to deal with stuff like this. We don’t know how to defend against it.

    It must be how the mastodons felt as tiny hominids picked them off one by one.

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