Saturday, September 22, 2018

"our investigation uncovered an eerily dystopian approach to the age-old grift of selling diet pills"


This weekend, a Twitter user shared a disturbing story that verged on the surreal. In a 32-tweet thread, Ashley recounted an abusive relationship with a boyfriend who forced her to eat until it caused her pain


racking up more than 80,000 retweets and 300,000 likes. It was also completely fake.


As the thread continued, it detailed Ashley’s road to weight loss after breaking up with her ex, featuring dozens of progress pics. These photos (and Ashley’s avatar) were stolen


While the Sarah’s program threads seem to be carefully engineered to go viral, having a compelling story isn’t enough if no one sees your tweets. Fortunately for the pill spammers, these threads are regularly retweeted by hugely popular aggregation accounts with hundreds of thousands of followers.