43% of facebook messages are spam, according to research paper.

43% of facebook messages are spam, according to research paper from HP.


Its a very detailed study giving breakdowns of  how facebook users message each other and what they are doing on the site.    

You could swap in match.com plentyoffish  or any other dating site in place of facebook and the usage patterns would be pretty similar.

14 Responses to “43% of facebook messages are spam, according to research paper.”

  1. daniow Says:

    As a facebook user and someone who has read the HPL paper I’m not sure that its accurate to say facebook messages are 43% spam. On facebook you can only send a message to a single user or to the members of a group that you own. The way the HP guys classify messages as spam (see appendix A for details) would mark most messages sent to groups as spam, leading to this high number. The sending messages to groups is not spam because it is solicited. By joining a group you agree to be messaged by the group owner with updates etc.

    Since joining facebook I’ve received 904 messages, only 1 of which has been what I think is spam, giving 0.11% spam. Perhaps I’ve been lucky but I doubt it.

    Other than this little quibble I like this paper. The graphs are great and I would love to see the ‘private’ message/poke data in this study contrasted with ‘public’ wall posts/comments on facebook.

  2. Kevin Fleming Says:

    When they say 43% of facebook messages are spam im pretty sure they are refering to groups sending out mass mailings to all its members, some groups consist of over 100,000 people and thus if they send a message out that instantly is 100,000 messages so that 43% would make sense. That seems to be the only way currently to spam a massive amount of people practicly on facebook.

  3. Noah Robinson Says:

    Hi Marcus, sorry to write you here but I’d like to be able to get in touch with you. Can you email me your full contact information when you have a moment.


    Noah Robinson

    VP, Business Development
    Glispa Media
    t: 212-253-0860
    f: 917-591-5473

  4. EelKat Says:

    I don’t know about face book, but here on WordPress that’s not even close.

    Since moving my blog to Word Press on February 16, 2007; I have gotten 21 “real” comments that were actually comments, and 362 “spam” comments that were just random posts with between 5 to 73 links in the post (all of them linking to Porn sites)… 21 to 362 is a lot higher than 43%

  5. G Says:

    Akismet does a decent job of blocking spam posts for me.

  6. john Says:

    Hi Markus,

    Thought I’d point you to the article on the owner of FrindFinder at Business 2.0:


  7. Shalin Says:

    thats huge.

  8. Social Network Traffic Numbers Inflated? at Front Porch Says:

    […] News Item #1: A detailed research from HP reveals that 43% of Facebook messages are spam. Marcus from Plentyoffish dating site puts it correctly that you would similar figures on any other social […]

  9. david Says:

    I run a site…and regardless the amount of spam..the social networks are doing better then normal email. plus if your getting spam..simply change your privacy settings.

  10. Josh Says:

    I have never been to facebook, never registered until today when they sent me an email from someone I dont know

    their unsubscrible link (I’ve never been there to subscribe) goes to a dead page on their site

    This is spam- blatent spam

    and if you search google for facebook spam you will find I am not the only one

  11. Social Networking and the Facebook Phenomenon « Bigpat’s Weblog Says:

    […] Facebook messages are spam. According to research by HP, 43% of facebook messages are spam (see https://plentyoffish.wordpress.com/2007/03/27/43-of-facebook-messages-are-spam-according-to-research-…).  In the last 2 days I have received friend requests from people I don’t know or heard […]

  12. Justin Says:

    Facebook has been turning bad for about 2 months. In 6 months it’ll be worthless and no one will go to it.

  13. Mike Says:

    I have seen where they now disable random accounts, assuming they are spammers.. Is there any way to get things back to the mid-1990’s when ppl were normal online?

  14. kaspars Says:

    Whenever I join the group soon after I receive messages from group owners with their advertising. This is what I don’t like. I don’t mind receiving some important updates but advertising seems too forced on me. I like to read group posts and choose what to read but I don’t like wasting time on endless messages with links to their special interests sites.

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