Twitter, a social networking site utilizing a short-character count status/post box, has often been used as a soapbox for political candidates trying to drum up support for their campaigns or causes. In recent years it has become wildly popular as a way to garner click-thru's to campaign donation sites.
William Wright, the Internet marketing agent responsible, says that he wasn't paid or compensated in any way for the fake followers, and was never contacted by the Romney campaign. Instead he states that he began the marketing operation as a way to make a point, and to showcase the services he provides.
He had this to say, "I didn't do this under the request of anyone affiliated to any campaign, and I was not and will not be compensated for it in any way. I did it to make a point. So much of our current Internet culture gives credibility to those who "appear popular" via Social Networking, but we never actually vet that popularity. Instead we take numbers at face value. We see someone with 700,000 Twitter followers and we automatically respect them or consider them an expert on....something. In reality, many of the political candidates we see with huge followings and many of the products we see with a huge pull on the various Social Networking sites are nothing more than clients who have paid people like me to seem popular to others. I could take a nameless client and make them a star. There is only one factor anymore when it comes to popularity, and that is how much the client is willing to pay. I am not attempting to benefit financially from any activity here, all I want to do is bring awareness to the situation. Stop trusting the numbers you see. Stop believing the reviews you read on Amazon. Stop assuming people with a million Facebook fans are legit. There is a good chance people like me are behind it."
Twitter has not released a statement regarding these activities, but buying Followers on the 6 year old Social Networking site is not an illegal practice.
William Wright is the director of a political reputation management site that claims it can ruin a candidates chances at winning an election, and guarantees wins for clients that work with it. You can follow FactJuice.Com on Tumblr at http://FactJuice.com, and reach William Wright at factjuice.com@