Steve Pembroke, a 44 year old man who lives with his mother on the Isle of Wight, has spoken of his devastation of learning he was not really as popular online as he believed after Facebook closed fake accounts run by Russian trolls. ‘I thought my witty updates on soap operas and reality TV had gathered me a real following,’ he told reporters. ‘My nightly photos of my dinner were turning Pot Noodles and beans on toast into an internet sensation amongst young, single Russian women – or so I thought.’
After Facebook shut down hundreds of accounts linked to the Kremlin supporting Internet Research Agency, which has been accused of spreading fake news during election campaigns, Mr Pembroke found his number of friends drop from almost 100 to 1. ‘And that’s just my mum and she doesn’t use the account I set up for her,’ Mr Pembroke whinged. ‘She is of the Ceefax generation, obviously.’
To make matters worse, Mr Pembroke is also one of those that had his data harvested by the social media giant. ‘Now I am inundated with adverts for Russian dating sites,’ he sighed. ‘Little do they know I have found a North Korean girlfriend online.’
He added his girlfriend has promised to meet him if he took a trip to Scotland and sent her photos of the Trident nuclear weapons base. ‘I haven’t heard back from her since but I am still hopeful,’ he said.