Supermodel or Spambot?


Source (Chris Jager 2014)

Unfortunately the sexy, flirtatious girl that you matched with on Tinder is probably a spambot.

One aspect of ‘produsage’ defined by Dr Axel Bruns is the concept of an organisational shift.

‘A shift from dedicated individuals and teams as producers to a broader-based, distributed generation of content by a wide community of participants’ – Bruns (2007)

The concept of Tinder was the ability to use technology to build new relationships and connect with people geographically close to you, but as the phenomenon has reached global capacity, it comes as no surprise that other organisations are misusing the application for their own benefit. The produsage community allows more participants to contribute to maximise the use of collective intelligence. Although this organisational shift from users to produsers opens up barriers, and drives a continual socialisation between participants, it also invites organisations to take advantage of the idea.

A relevant example of this is the recent outbreak of bots infiltrating Tinder, attempting to infect user’s mobile phones asking for their credit card details via a bogus URL download. It begins with scammers setting up fake profiles with images of sexually appealing women that then ask you to download or click on a URL, usually relating to ‘Castle Clash’, a mobile video game, which will then ask for credit card details with the fine print indicating charges of up to $80 a month. The conversation will usually follow similar criteria as follows;

Source (Eduard Kovacs 2014)

Whilst the concept of open participation in hindsight will be beneficial due to the interconnectivity media and technologies allow, it will open up opportunities for companies such as ‘Castle Clash’ to penetrate ethical and morality issues.

Tinder’s co-founder Sean Rad stated that spam accounts are not effecting the overall usage of Tinder, as Facebook profiles must be linked to Tinder to create an account, to supposedly help solve legitimacy issues. Although, these spambots may result in a deterrent for users and result in their discontinuing use of Tinder. This concept further demonstrates the negative effects of produsage and how companies are demonstrating organisational shifts to negatively contribute to media platforms.


2 thoughts on “Supermodel or Spambot?

  1. With Tinder, does it automatically match you to everyone? Ive had it on my phone for months, but only used it for pretty much the first time a few weeks ago when my friends were talking about it. Literally ever single person I said yes to, it popped up saying they said yes to me too. Which seemed a bit bogus…

    • From what I’ve researched, I haven’t used the app myself either, it matches you with people geographically close to you as well as having some mutual friends on Facebook. Also from researching and talking to friends, guys seem to ‘like’ every girl in hopes they get a match

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