Earlier this year, Cristiano Ronaldo dethroned Selena Gomez to become the most followed person on Instagram, but it seems not all celebrities’ followers are genuine.
In news that’s neither surprising nor shocking, the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance (ICMP) found many of the world’s most famous celebrities bolster their social media accounts with fake followers. The ICMP selected the biggest celebrities from film, music, television and sport and ran the list through IG Audit to find out the percentage of followers that are actually fake (or illegitimate, i.e bots, ghost accounts or fraudulent identities).
Topping the list is talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, with 58 percent of her 77.2 million followers found to be fake. She’s joined by singers Katy Perry (53 percent) and Taylor Swift (49 percent), along with model Kourtney Kardashian (49 percent). The remainder of the top 10 is taken out by footballers.
Toni Kroos (57 percent), David Luiz (56 percent) and Isco (54 percent) come in second, third and fourth, with Andreas Iniesta (52 percent), Luka Modric (50 percent) and Philippe Coutinho (50 percent) occupying the sixth, seventh and eight spots.
When you consider the amount of money athletes earn through endorsements, it makes sense sports stars would have a high number of fake followers to boost their Instagram credentials and make sure they aren’t missing out on any sponsorship deals.
The takeaway from all this? Don’t be too bothered about how many followers you have as it’s more than likely your favourite celebrities aren’t as popular as they appear.
Check out the top 10 below and view the full list at icmp.ac.uk.
1. Ellen DeGeneres – 58%
2. Toni Kroos – 57%
3. David Luiz – 56%
4. Isco – 54%
5. Katy Perry – 53%
6. Andreas Iniesta – 52%
7. Luka Modric – 50%
8. Philippe Coutinho – 50%
9. Kourtney Kardashian – 49%
10. Taylor Swift – 49%