Shakira lost 26,406 Facebook likes Wednesday not because she is any less popular but because she is one of many celebrities targeted by fake Facebook likes.
Facebook is cleaning house with a purge of fake Facebook likes dubbed “Operation Unlike” by Techcrunch.
Celebrities like Justin Bieber and Rihanna whose Facebook likes are in the millions had a high number of fake Facebook likes purged. Lady Gaga, who boasts 53 million Facebook likes, lost 34,326 likes Wednesday, according to PageData, a company that independently measures Facebook engagement.
The popular online poker site Texas HoldEm Poker had one of the biggest declines in likes, with a loss of 103, 514 fake Facebook likes.
In August, Facebook announced that they would begin purging Pages of fake Facebook likes by deleting fake accounts. “On average, less than 1% of Likes on any given Page will be removed, providing they and their affiliates have been abiding by our terms,” Facebook wrote in its blog, adding that its new automated efforts will remove fake Facebook likes “gained by malware, compromised accounts, deceived users, or purchased bulk likes.”
The removal of fake Facebook likes give the Page admin a more accurate count on user engagement and demographics. Facebook likes are in high demand. It is a core strategy used by marketers to build brand awareness and identify what users are interested in. Most businesses and celebrities validate their services and/or popularity through the number of Facebook likes they have. Although some businesses and celebrities may see a loss from the purge of fake Facebook likes, the upside is less spam, less chances of potentially falling victim to scams and more authentic engagement.
Celebs with a high number of fake Facebook likes
Other celebrities who fell prey to fake Facebook likes, according to PageData, were:
- Shakira gained 39, 543 likes in the last seven days and lost 26, 406 fake Facebook likes. Her total likes round off to 54.7 million.
- Pop star Rihanna had 28, 275 fake Facebook likes removed. She has a total of 60.4 million Facebook likes.
- Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo had 18, 083 fake Facebook likes removed. He now has 48.6 million Facebook likes.
- FC Barcelona’s Leo Messi had 6,881 fake Facebook likes removed. He has 38.2 million Facebook likes.
- FC Barcelona’s page had 5,292 fake Facebook likes removed, leaving them with 35.3 million authentic likes.
- Singer Justin Bieber had 27, 859 fake Facebook likes removed. He has 46.6 million Facebook likes.
- The King of Pop, Michael Jackson, had 19, 680 fake Facebook likes removed. He has 52 million Facebook likes.
To see a list of celebrities with the biggest drop in fake Facebook likes visit PageData.