Social Media’s Ghost Problem

Social Media has a ghost problem, and not the sort you’ll see anytime soon on paranormal shows.  The ghost represent the millions of accounts that are fake, abandoned or (in true, unsettling, ghostly fashion), represent people who are no longer with us.  After all, our social-media selves — in keeping with the notion of “ether and clouds” — aren’t constricted by our mortality.   

NYT again dishes up a solid read on a problem that’s been festering and growing for awhile. The ranks of fake, abandoned, deceased, etc. accounts on Facebook, Twitter, et al, remind me of the 2008-2009 housing crisis in this regard: Corporate actors sell a “basket” of commodities (packaged mortgage loans / an audience universe). They do this with the knowledge that the “package” value is inflated, outright misrepresented. 

Facebook at least seems aware that a “big cull” is essential for their long term survival. The recent “we’re emphasizing friends and conversation” was likely less a response to “fake news,” and more likely a result of FB’s realization that with their scale, the kind of accountability that’s applied to most industries can no longer be avoided. 

On the upside, a correction in SM stocks, even a severe one, shouldn’t
directly result in millions of home foreclosures. I emphasize “shouldn’t!