They’re already calling it The Great Facebook Purge.

The suspicions of many are likely to be validated this Thursday, March 12, 2015, when Facebook has announced plans to purge an unknown number of what they are euphemistically calling “inactive” profiles from the like counts of brand pages.

On every Facebook page, owners now see the following (somewhat awkward) message:

We’ve recently updated the way we measure how many people like your Page. Pages may see a decrease in likes after March 12, when we removed likes from inactive Facebook accounts.

To you and me, “inactive” means “fake.” Instagram (also owned by Facebook) had a similar purge in December, leading to widespread declines in follower counts.

It’s a wonderful thing and probably proof of the justice of God As I Understand Him that Justin Bieber was the hardest hit by the Instagram purge. Realistically, though, probably everyone will see a decrease in the number of “likes” on each page. Facebook bots often sign up to legitimate pages in order to camouflage their origins and intentions. For instance, we had an entire clan of fake “Diijhaegs” and “Diijihadis” sign up for the 5 Magazine Facebook page. They never did anything nefarious, but it was a creepy feeling, having an entire family tree of bots targeting you. We banned most as soon as they were noticed. From a look at the banned users, most have been deleted over time but a couple still remain:

goawaygod

Those who bought fake Facebook fans to make their pages look better, of course, will likely see a far more significant drop than the average.

Will The Great Facebook Purge be as dramatic as the Instagram purge? Will those who bought the most fake Facebook fans and will they be the most severely punished? We’ve marked a few pages of curiously… suspicious… accounts ourselves; it’ll be interesting to see how this shakes out.



 

  • LarsLB

    I can’t wait 🙂 Curious to see how much my own pages will drop as well.. I’ve been getting some curious “traffic” from India on one of them ..

    • terrymatthew

      Yeah, it’s really hard to get upset about that since fan page numbers have been completely theoretical for awhile now.

      • LarsLB

        Did you notice anything dramatic? I lost around 2000 likes on either profile .. one’s now at 150.000 and the other at 65.000

        • terrymatthew

          I certainly did — exclusively among people you have probably never heard of and likely didn’t think much of if you had. These had relatively few likes. Nearly everybody else saw losses at a rate a bit higher than yours, including accounts that people told me were indicative of massive like-buys.

  • Gellavar

    Hi Terry, would you like to do a measures yourself? Count likes for “top edm producers” like skreillex, aoki, tiesto, hawtin before (2 days left) and after the “fall”? it will be interesting to see.

    • terrymatthew

      Hey, yeah I screencapped half of the people you mentioned this afternoon, along with a few others that seemed a bit “off” or whom industry chat has mentioned before as a suspect in this sort of behavior. I actually predict a lot of those people will take enormous hits, yet will still have a very big following. Some of the younger folks who did this, on the other hand, might look pretty foolish.

      • Gellavar

        cool! let me know please here in comments where your new article about this purge will be posted.

    • anonymous(expect us)

      anyone who considers any of them a “dj” tiesto maybe aside, is a cunt of the highest calibur. EDM was a fucking ace hard trance label before music was illuminatified

      • Gellavar

        are you trying to offend me?
        i put them into quotes, cause i dont think that they deserve their populatity because they are so damn awesome musicians or djs

  • Jozef Mikula SkiFi

    my ranks will probably stay untouched 😛

  • Ceaz Amaze

    I want my Refund !!!

  • Irvin Cee

    I expect to lose something between 10 and 20% of my followers.
    The Facebook advertising I done is the main cause of those fake likes.

  • yay

  • rob

    Results are in… minimal losses…deadmouse leading charge with 190k missing likes

    • terrymatthew

      I’m tracking a sampling of around 70 and 100 pages, and it’s still rolling across Facebook (our page, for instance, lost 200 between last night and this morning.) Interestingly, a DJ that I know you’ve never heard of lost 35% of his fans, but most of the rest appear to be between 3 and 6%. I’ll probably post an update later this week.

  • Pazzle Frazz

    My page lost 1.1% of it’s likes over the week while all our other metrics were way up. Made me think, “HMMM I wonder if FB removed a bunch of dead accounts” Found this article and all seems right with the world. Thanks!