The Dark Side of the Internet: ad fraud, bots, fake news, influencer scandalsPosted on: 17/01/2018, by : Laurence Borel
It has been over a year since I last updated this website, primarily due to lack of time. Another reason, is that I can barely recognise the Internet. The political earthquakes witnessed in 2016 and 2017, seemed to have dramatically changed how we interact with social media platforms, and not in a good way.
On the topic of bots, I highly recommend Mike Hind and Mentionmapp‘s brilliant Disinformation Age podcast, which offer insights into bots and astroturfing strategies. The bot phenomenon is fascinating. For example, the infamous @DavidJoBrexit was ousted as a Russian bot last August. Having interacted quite a bit with the ‘bot’, I am however convinced that the account is manned by a real human based in the UK.
Interestingly however, bots can also wage a war against brands. Mike Hind and Mentionmapp investigated how the taxi trade launched a bot campaign against Uber in October last year.
Are marketers actively using bots to market/astroturf their products? As consumers, can we still trust brands online?