Is Tony Ortega Buying Fake Twitter Followers? Part II


As previously reported, considerable concern has been growing as to whether what comprises Tony Ortega’s Twitter following is, in fact, dominated by fake accounts employed to give what The New York Times described ‘an illusion of mass audience’.

The website which tracks Twitter for fake users reports an interesting pattern in Ortega’s interaction with his “followers” in the days after the New York Times January piece prompted Twitter to begin purging some of its most egregious fake users:


Note the precipitous drop off from January to February. Ortega’s ‘followers per month’ nose-dived dramatically, crashing from 800 to 200. Even to call it a nose-dive is kind. His numbers fell off a cliff!

This sudden loss of 400% in the space of a month is of a sort time identifies as being consistent with what they observed in the wake of Twitter’s actions as it began curbing these ‘bot armies for hire’ among those unethical enough to employ them.

Socialblade ranked Tony Ortega in the lowest tier of micro-blogging journalists at 211,811th most popular, giving him a C-minus rating for the authenticity of his Twitter followers. Frankly, even that seems a touch too generous.


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