At least once a day I see a Facebook post from a friend inviting me to 'Like' or 'Comment' on a picture
This article explains why you should not type an 'X', 'Like' or 'Share' Facebook posts like the following...
Here's an example of what I am referring to...
As you can see this post already has 135,823 'Likes', Almost 900 thousand comments (mostly the letter 'X'), and over 19 thousand shares.
So surely if nearly point-9 of a million people did it there must be some amazing magic to see?
Guess what? Nothing Happens
So maybe I didn't follow the instruction quite right - after all it says "Do it fast !" So I'm enticed to comment 2 or 3 more time typing "X" as quickly as I can to see the magic...
You guessed it again - Nothing happens
Except that's not quite true - something is happening. The number of Comments, Likes and Shares is increasing for this post while I watch.
In the time it has taken me to write this article (about 8 minutes) this Facebook post has received another 108 likes, 926 comments and 12 shares!
So why do these Facebook posts exist?
Why do you see posts such as "Like if you hate cancer, ignore if you don’t?" or "Press Like and type the number 1 and see what happens to the image!"
Known as Like Farming, the aim is to accrue as many Likes, Comments and Shares as possible and create a highly-valued 'Social Reach'. You see Facebook uses an algorithm that works out whether the content of a Facebook Page is to be shown to Facebook users. To put it simply the more, Likes, Comments and Shares the higher number of Facebook users will see it. All of these statistics contribute to that Facebook Page's EdgeRank.
Besides tricking people with annoying posts that exponentially grow to get their Facebook Page's Social Reach far and wide there is a more straightforward reason people do this.
There is money to be made from selling Facebook pages with large numbers of "Fans". Try Googling "Facebook Fan Pages for Sale" and you will see plenty of this sort of thing...
So what should I do if I see one of these posts?
At the very least - If you don't want to show all your Facebook friends how gullible you are - Do Nothing - Ignore It - Don't 'Like' it
However I suggest you do your bit to help Facebook reduce Like Farming by doing this...
1. Click the inner pull down - the one in line with the original spammer (and not in line with your friend - you don't want to report your friend!)
2. Select I don't want to see this
3. You will then see a choice asking you Why don't you want to see this photo?
4. Select It's spam
5. Then you will see the question What kind of spam?
6. Select the your choice - Usually Just a spammy post
7. For good measure click the Hide all from... link
8. Finally click Confirm like this...
You could also do your friend that fell for it a favour and Private Message them a link to this article :)