Beware the Twitter Whores, because they are starting to show up on local Twitter pages. By accident, I met one of them last night. She showed up in my Inbox boasting promises. If you have a sharp eye, you can usually tell the Twitter Whores from the rest of the pack because their Tweets, Followers, and Following numbers look mismatched. Yet, there was a logo, which is one step Twitter Whores don't usually take, opting instead for the standard bird.
She called herself AZOOLA, and she wanted me to follow her back to her place. Hey, I need Followers every once in a while, so I clicked her logo and landed on her page. Right then I knew that she wasn't on the up-and-up. There was a single Tweet teasing me with "Click here to add 100 followers." Funny, I thought, because AZOOLA had fewer Followers than she was offering, topping off at 86. I guess that she didn't use her own service, which meant that there was no way I was going to use it, and I backed off. Before I was able to clear her page, she whipped something at my computer. I use Chrome as a browser, but all of the sudden, IE8 came to life, launching a huge red caution sign that read, WARNING: SUSPECTED PHISHING SITE.
After I left, I went back to Twitter and put out the warning. Watch for AZOOLA. She has crabs.
As social media sites become further embedded into our daily lives, their importance is heightened among the criminal element trying to steal information, email addresses, credit card numbers, and similar information. That's not the worst of it. This next group has been given the name Twitter Slaves. Business Week's Blog Spotting published an article earlier this week highlighting companies that sell Twitter Followers, aka, Twitter Slaves. Want to find out which companies, is in the Twitter Trafficking business, and how much it costs? Type "Buy Twitter Followers" into your search bar. I chose to look at Twitter1k, a company that had three different packages. The least expensive deal was the "1000 Followers Package" for $24.97. The only drawback is that there is 10-14 day delivery time. My guess is that they have a "Follower Farm" and they raise their followers from scratch and put the out on the streets as fast as possible. The reason that it takes so long is because they get shipped overseas.
Business Week chose a company called FastFollowers that worked on a point basis. Each person you followed provided you with a point which earned you a follower. At the time the article was written, the author reported 208 followers. Humorously, he wrote:
Those 208 people “follow” me. They appear to pay no attention to my Tweets. They don’t respond when I send them @ messages. They’re too busy branding themselves to their followers, including me, to listen. Their only communication is spam in my direct-mailbox.
It sounds as exciting as purchasing a pet rock.
I think you could probably fill in your own ending, but in case you're busy: We do not condone, or recommend, Twitter Whores or Twitter Slaves. Thanks for reading.