October 11, 2016
Facebook now supports astroturfing in social games

Facebook is getting a lot of attention today regarding its changes to the way your privacy is handled but that's not the subject of this post. What is however is the apparent use of the 'social' games on Facebook that use virtual currency as a way to entice users to continue playing the game(s).

Recently there has been a spate of reports about how third party game companies doing business on Facebook have been conning users in order to make boatloads of money but there is news out today via The Business Insider that political groups have discovered the joy of virtual currency as a way to get people to make some sort of political statement.

The post on The Business Insider is about an anti-health reform group called "Get Health Reform Right" who are offering game players some of this 'virtual currency' to fill out a survey which when finished automatically sends the following email to their Congressional Representative

"I am concerned a new government plan could cause me to lose the employer coverage I have today. More government bureaucracy will only create more problems, not solve the ones we have."

Source:The Business Insider

This is a screen capture of the survey courtesy of The Business Insider and Dan Porter, CEO of OMGPOP online games

survey

This type of thing is typically referred to as 'astroturfing' and while it isn't illegal the ethics behind it it are certainly questionable.

But then Facebook doesn't seem to have much of a problem with questionable ethics it seems.