This is yet another laughable yet very real practice in the education industry. Yes, dear reader, there are people in the biz who sit around doing this because 1) they have nothing better to do; 2) they’re mean and spiteful little creatures; and 2) they don’t realize just how short life is. More commonly, there are people who outsource this “work” to companies that hire other people who spend all day clicking and posting in the name of fraud and a meager income (supplement). The “work” of click farms is a double-edged sword. It can be used to enhance the social media image of a particular company or drain the digital advertising budgets of its competitors.
First things first for the uninitiated: What is a click farm? A business that pays employees to click on website elements to artificially boost the status of a client’s website or a product. Click farms are usually based in developing countries (including Viet Nam), where wages are extremely low by Western standards. Source: WhatIs.com
I touched on this in passing in a 2014 article entitled Walking the walk – Ethical agency-based recruitment, published in University World News, at least at the individual (amateur) level.
For your amusement and, possibly, shock, here’s a YouTube video from 2017 about a police raid on a click farm in Thailand.
Cheating as a Misuse of Creativity
Here’s an article I recommend for both the perpetrators of this despicable practice and its victims: Three reasons you need to stop clicking competitors’ AdWords campaigns
This except should whet your appetite to learn more:
When Google AdWords emerged in October 2000, this indisputably changed the platform of online marketing forever, significantly extending potential client reach for prosperous businesses – all at the click of a button.
Eighteen years later, this remains to be an integral part of many business’ marketing activity – acting as a critical channel for easily accessible, rapid financial development.
However, whilst many organisations across the globe continue to persistently reap the rewards of utilising AdWords’ pay per click service, there remains to be a significant number of individuals and large-scale corporations alike who are willing to exploit this network for less genuine, constructive purposes.
This also applies to Facebook posts (!). Eyes on the prize. Success without integrity is failure!
P.S.: Here’s another good article about this topic: Click Farms & Social Media