We know that a lot of Facebook friends probably aren't... meaning that they are fake. But how many of them? A new Mashable article says that up to 44% of Facebook followers are fake.
They also said up to 33% of followers on Twitter are fake. The article said that there is a new "online tool, created by London-based social media management firm StatusPeople, that sifts a sample of those who follow your Twitter handle for fake and inactive followers."
Okay, I had to try it. I used my Twitter account and did their test. Turns out mine came out to be 98% "good" and up to 2% possibly fake.
So what does it all mean? I guess for me, it makes me take pause to the people I accept as friends and followers. Of course, what may look like a fake account perhaps really isn't. I know quite a few friends that have set up accounts but don't tweet much and haven't gotten around to even putting up a picture. On the flip side, I'm sure there are also accounts that look real and yet aren't.
To me, this information reinforces that social media is a tool for friendship, and not the basis of it. Sure, you can have online friends, but the real test of a friendship is interaction and closeness.