Is Tony Ortega Buying Fake Twitter Followers?

 

In January of this year The New York Times ran a bombshell story exposing the use of fake Twitter users employed to prop up popularity-starved Twitters looking for a quick fix to their relative obscurity.

The Times reports a wide-spread epidemic of unscrupulous users purchase fake accounts as an easy way of making them seem more important than they are.

These accounts are counterfeit coins in the booming economy of online influence, reaching into virtually any industry where a mass audience — or the illusion of it — can be monetized. Fake accounts, deployed by governments, criminals and entrepreneurs, now infest social media networks. By some calculations, as many as 48 million of Twitter’s reported active users — nearly 15 percent — are automated accounts designed to simulate real people

Its reporting goes on to quote Rami Essaid, the founder of Distil Networks, a cybersecurity company that specializes in eradicating bot networks as saying:

Social media is a virtual world that is filled with half bots, half real people. You can’t take any tweet at face value. And not everything is what it seems.”

Fake? Unscrupulous? Popularity-starved? One would be hard-pressed to find a more apt representative of those traits than Tony Ortega so we decided to do some digging, beginning with a question many have been raising since Tony Ortega first began his ‘career’ as a ‘stay-at-home blogger’ — Are Ortega’s followers as fake as his journalism credentials?

We have reached out to a service specializing in data evaluations of suspect Twitter accounts and will be reporting further on this story when the numbers are in.

If Ortega runs his twitter account with the same level of integrity he ran the Village Voice during his child sex scandal-ridden tenure as Editor we may soon discover, like so much of Tony Ortega’s past, ‘not everything is as it seems’.

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