It turns out that if you move more and more of your experiences to the virtual world, your interactions, bit by bit, become a little less real. That’s at least one of the messages one can glean from the NYT report on the company that has been selling fake followers (and likes and retweets) to celebrities and politicians: The Follower Factory: “These accounts are counterfeit coins in the booming economy of online influence, reaching into virtually any industry where a mass audience — or the illusion of it — can be monetized. Fake accounts, deployed by governments, criminals and entrepreneurs, now infest social media networks.” (I only bought the fake Twitter followers and newsletter subscribers so my kids would stop making fun of me.)

+ NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced that his office will open an investigation into the company that sells the fake followers. (He made the announcement on Twitter…)

+ Fake followers are just the beginning. Reddit users have been mapping celebrity faces onto other people’s bodies in movies. That might seem like harmless fun, but it’s really a harbinger of the future of fake news.