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Twitter 2Q2014 Preview: Operating Metrics Still Matter
I have one main Twitter account, and one account that I use simply to follow a sector of people that I otherwise don't want cluttering my real news-feed. That account is kept open and I never tweet anything out from it. Yet, I am constantly receiving follows from completely random accounts that have absolutely no affiliation with either my account or even the subject matter of the people I follow.
This has been discussed before with Facebook as well and it seemed that discussion lasted only about a week or so. This would seem to be THE seminal issue of the current technology renaissance. The last one was based on eyeballs, however we did not have social media at that point (for the most part) so those eyeballs were real at least. If it turns out that a significant portion of the user-base of these companies is reliant on payments to third-world operators who go about adding people and liking things, I think you could have a situation here that quickly turns into headline material. In addition, this seems like the type of issue that was born to be swept under the rug for a while, only because it's a scheme that is so easy to enact. Who wouldn't take advantage of this type of thing. If I lived in a third-world country and needed money this is exactly the type of business I would start.
To be honest, I do not know that this is or is not a real issue, and I am not claiming we are in a bubble etc. I am just using my "common-sense" yardstick here to ponder the quality of MAU's, much like we all ask about the quality of earnings every quarter. These companies tell us how often people sign on etc. and can even predict who will get married based on people's usage.
Using their advanced analytics I am certain they can decipher the accounts that are real vs those that are fake. Nobody seems willing to ask that question though.
Jul 27, 2014. 11:29 AM
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