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Facebook 'Authentic' Users Questioned Over Bot Purge: Millions Of USA Today 'Likes' Vanish

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Facebook announced Friday that the company has discovered and dismantled a network of fake accounts that have been rising on the site over the last six months. The result of that purge has caused tremendous damage to one news outlet’s Facebook page in particular — USA Today. In its statement, Facebook announced that the latest purge of spammers could bring down follower counts among 99 percent of large publisher pages by less than three percent. It appears no major outlet has been affected by the purge more than USA Today. The newspaper has already lost five million followers from its primary Facebook page by the end of Friday. “The apparent intent of the campaign was to deceptively gain new friend connections by liking and interacting primarily with popular publisher Pages on our platform, after which point they would send spam,” Facebook said in a statement. “We observed that the bulk of these accounts became dormant after liking a number of Pages, suggesting they had not been mobilized yet to actually make connections and send spam to those people.”According to data from CrowdTangle, USA Today had 15.2 million likes Thursday and has dropped to 10.2 million — a fall of 32.38 percent. Likes were falling from USA Today’s page at a blistering pace Friday, with thousands of followers disappearing every minute. No other major publisher appears to have experienced the same drop. Outlets like The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Daily Caller, Fox News, and CNN all lost followers after Facebook’s announcement. These pages,however, experienced a drop of less than three percent, as Facebook predicted. USA Today provided The Daily Caller with a statement after publication which said that the newspaper had contacted Facebook about the fake accounts. “USA Today Network takes great pride in our journalism and the trust our consumers and advertising partners have in us. We have been in close communication with Facebook since presenting this issue to them and look forward to a swift solution that prevents this illegitimate activity from happening on our Facebook page in the future,” Maribel Wadsworth, chief transformation officer, USA Today Network and Gannett, said in the statement.Facebook told TheDC: “We don’t know why specific Pages were targeted, but we are grateful to our partners like USA Today for assisting us in our efforts to stop this spam operation.” The newspaper, owned by Gannett, has experienced tremendous growth on Facebook in the last six months, representing a true anomaly in the industry. The newspaper more than doubled the nearly 6 million followers it had in late September. The New York Times and the Washington Post each added under 2 million followers in the same time frame, while the LA Times grew by about 300,000 followers. USA Today’s Exceptional Facebook Growth Over The Last 6 Months http://dailycaller.com/wp-content/upl... -- Publishers are able to advertise for likes on Facebook, but the social media company’s statement Friday noted that none of the likes being purged “were the result of paid ads.”The head of social media content and strategy for USA Today, Jamie Mottram, proudly tweeted in January that his outlet was the “fastest-growing FB page in news.” https://twitter.com/JamieMottram/stat... -- USA Today’s own coverage of the Facebook announcement points out that fake page likes can potentially be used to make businesses “more popular on the site and also potentially to boost their rankings on search engines.”CNET: Facebook knocks down massive spammer networkhttps://www.cnet.com/news/facebook-kn...Facebook: Disrupting a major spam operationhttps://www.facebook.com/notes/facebo...USA Today: Facebook breaks up fake account ring targeting publisher pageshttps://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/n...Daily Caller: Facebook Discovers ‘Major Spam Operation,’ USA Today Likes Plummethttp://dailycaller.com/2017/04/14/fac...


facebook back on my bullshit Facebook buyer customer purchaser shopper enjoyer end user seller user back on my bullshit User challenge examine grill interrogate interview investigate query quiz search seek catechize enquire hit inquire knock petition probe pry pump quest roast solicit ask about cross-examine give the third degree go over hit up hold out for make inquiry pick one's brains put through the wringer put to the question raise question show curiosity sound out sweat it out of work over answer find reply certainty doubtlessness sureness surety oppose suspect dispute hesitate impugn distrust disbelieve mistrust controvert suspicion impeach call into question cast doubt upon puzzle over wonder about trust believe contested argued challenged debated impugned questioned investigated checked considered cross-examined explored inspected measured researched reviewed scrutinized searched studied tested tried unplanned bygone past ancient history at an end closed completed concluded done done with ended finished gone settled failed fewer incomplete less unfinished ever too more overmuch surplus extra additionally beyond excessively extremely overly remaining superfluous unduly unused immensely in excess inordinately left over over and above necessary essential off upstairs overhead covering aloft farther up higher than in heaven in the sky on high on top of overtop straight up traversely under above exceeding greater than larger than over inferior deficient below across athwart cross crossed crosswise opposite transversely afresh again anew de novo lately newly of late once again once more over again recently anon bis by and by come again encore freshly one more time over and over recurrently reiteratively repeatedly amid amidst among amongst between during mid surrounded by throughout separate outside away from back on my bullshit Over OVER Bot back on my bullshit bot bank lot much sum thousand ton total trillion abundance agglomeration aggregation assemblage batch bulk bunch bundle cargo clump cluster collection concentration congeries deposit fullness gathering gobs harvest haul hill hoard jillion jumble load lots lump mass mint mound mountain multiplicity ocean oodles plenty pot profusion quantity ream scad stack stock stockpile store volume whole a lot amassment great deal little part debt ditch individual lack need one valley want billions heaps large number loads many masses millions piles scads thousands tons zillions umpteen considerable countless infinite innumerable lots of numerous umteen zillion America Columbia Land of Liberty New World U.S. U.S.A. US of A land of opportunity the States United States USA back on my bullshit contemporary current modernized present-day state-of-the-art stylish avant-garde concomitant latest novel now present recent coincident concurrent contempo cutting-edge fresh last word late latter-day leading-edge modernistic modish neoteric new-fashioned newfangled prevailing prevalent twenty-first century up-to-the-minute with-it old old-fashioned past future ancient antiquated obsolete outdated passe modern coeval prompt being started begun instant ad hoc already extant immediate topical up-to-date contemporaneous existent commenced nowadays at this moment even now for the time being going on in duration in process just now under consideration distant away previous absent far former new latter young newborn hot off the fire hot off the press just out the latest earlier preceding futuristic advanced revolutionary ahead of its time nontraditional ultramodern timely abreast au courant cutting edge dashing expedient fashionable fitting happening hot in vogue opportune popular red-hot suitable trendy with it brand-new state of the art all the rage faddish in fashion in-thing newest à la mode out-of-date existing synchronous coetaneous coexistent mod hot off press voguish synchronic succeeding straightaway forthwith directly immediately instantly first off here and now in a moment momentarily on the double promptly pronto right away soon PDQ any more at once at the moment at this time in a minute in nothing flat instanter like now right now these days this day eventually later shortly anon before long before you know it by and by down the line down the pike down the road in a short time pretty soon without delay never presently nonce present moment the time being this time today more modern more present more recent Today die die out dissolve evaporate fade melt clear dematerialize evanesce exit be lost become invisible fade away go away coagulate improve solidify appear arrive come Dove belly flop dip disappear drop duck fall go headfirst gutter header jump leap lunge nose-dive pitch plumb plummet plunge spring submerge swoop vanish vault go up rise face ascend abscond beat it bolt break clear out cut and run decamp dog it duck out escape flee fly the coop get go AWOL go south hightail leave make a break make off make scarce pull out quit run off scram skedaddle skip out slip sneak away split steal away take off vamoose yield stop give up endure abide continue stay strengthen join remain wait absquatulate break out depart get away make a getaway run away take flight ate absorbed attacked banqueted bit bolted breakfasted broke bread chewed chowed down crammed devoured digested dined dispatched dispose of feast upon fed fell to gobbled up gorged gormandized grazed had a bite had a meal had for ingested inhaled lunched made pig of oneself masticated munched nibbled noshed partake of pecked at picked pigged out polished off porked out put away ruminated scarfed scoffed snacked supped swallowed took food took in took nourishment wolfed maintained built opened preserved misunderstood abstained blow over cease die down dissipate end finish fizzle out pass peter out subside consume absorb apply avail oneself of deplete devour dominate drain drivel eat up employ engross exhaust expend finish up fritter away frivol away go through have recourse to lavish lessen monopolize obsess preoccupy profit by put to use run out of run through spend squander throw away trifle utilize wash up waste wear out build starve not use neglect gather collect fill save construct fast store accumulate hoard create Vanish! back on my bullshit Vanish
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