Instagram and the ‘likes system’.
I recently discovered the world of click farms and wondered what it could mean for Instagram. I heard selena gomez was currently the world’s best selling female artist, she’s number one across all popular streaming platforms. Upon hearing this information I wondered…. Who’s buying her music? Don’t get me wrong she’s a very talented woman, but I Hardly hear her music played, Not in bars, stores or on radio. After doing some research I noticed popular Instagram accounts with over 100k in views, but 30 likes and 5 comments. I know poor engagement could be down to the dodgy algorithm but other work could be at hand. The secret world of click farms.
What are click farms?
Click farms are offices consisting of thousands of mobile phones, all for the purpose of creating fake likes and streams. It has been reported companies pay thousands to get likes on Facebook and Instagram. As well as having mobiles programed to like posts, click farms also employ people to manually like, comment and stream on various media outlets. In a way it is a type of fraud as accounts that use click farms are actively deciveing their followers and the media platform they are using. Although fraud in definition click farms are not illegal, even though they breach many social media policies.
How do likes affect instagram users?
Celebrities and social influencers rake in the cash by using the Instagram platform to hawk products to their followers. But the only way they can do that is to obtain the interests of large companies and brands willing to sponsor them. Pr teams reach out to accounts with loads of followers as well as likes and comments. Likes and comments are crucial in determining whether content achieves good engagement. The better the engagement the more likely an account can ‘influence’. Fake engagement will jepodise the authentic reach to potential consumers. So although on the surface an account will look the part, in reality the popularity is a facade.
Those that use Instagram for fun may feel pressure to achieve thousands of likes per post. This can lead to serious anxiety impacting on mental health.
How will removing likes change instagram?
While speaking at the New York Times DealBrook Conference, Kardashian-West revealed she thinks the step will improve mental health.
‘As far as mental health…I think taking the likes away and taking that aspect away from [Instagram] would be really beneficial for people,’ she said.
Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri said: ‘It’s about young people. The idea is to depressurize Instagram, make it less of a competition, give people more space to focus on connecting with people they love and things that inspire them.’
Some aren’t convinced and have accused instagram of wanting to control what trends so they can prevent users profiting off the social media platform.
Some professionals expressed the content of instagram is the real issue “The biggest impact of Instagram is the content,” said Renee Engeln, a psychology professor at Northwestern University. “The exposure to this constant stream of perfected images is what seems to hurt psychologically.”