Periscope’s Latest Update Cracks Down on Fake Engagement

Anywhere that engagement metrics like favorites, shares, and
hearts can be used to signal success, ways to “fake” these
numbers aren’t too far behind. Periscope is the latest platform
to crack down on these faking and spamming efforts, as they
revealed this week
in a company Medium post
.

“Periscope is a place for instant engagement and we’ve heard
your concerns about spammy accounts and chats,” they said to open
their statement. Indeed, Periscope users had been reporting
artificial hearts, followers, viewers, and chats for quite some
time. And while the company’s 2016 measures to cut down on spam
viewers and commenters were successful in curbing abuse and noise
on the platform, many of these “fakes” persisted—with
the help of YouTube videos and other tutorials to further the
practice
.

But by finding ways to conflate spam engagement and fake
engagement, this new policy seems to give their management efforts
new heft and meaning. “Any artificial hearts, chats, followers
and views violate our spam rules, and so will selling or promoting
fake engagement,” the company said. To make the reporting process
easier when these behaviors do arrive, “[Periscope] also focusing
on proactive enforcement to help make chat quality better, and will
soon launch account-level spam reporting options to let you report
spammy behavior more easily.”

The last company to take such aggressive action on fake accounts
was Instagram, who
removed thousands of accounts en masse to contain the problem in
November 2018
. The move was remarkable at the time, and frankly
continues to be; a number of other platforms have failed to take
meaningful measures to control spam or fake accounts. As we’re
learning, these efforts can contribute not only to inflated viewer
numbers, but an inflated sense of influence for those accounts –
contributing to misinformation or misplaced online authority. By
taking on this issue so pointedly, Periscope is standing apart from
other platforms that shy away from the issue…including its parent
company, Twitter.

“We are always looking for ways to make Periscope feel safer
and more authentic for our community,” the company’s Medium
post concluded. It’ll be interesting to see how these latest
measures affect the Periscope user experience, as well as if
it’ll push other platforms to be similarly stringent in managing
the scourge of fake accounts and engagement.

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Periscope’s Latest Update Cracks Down on Fake Engagement

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Periscope’s Latest Update Cracks Down on Fake Engagement