Earlier today, AEW owner and CEO Tony Khan caused a stir on social media when he released a series of tweets suggesting that an independent study had shown that most of the staunch anti-AEW community online was not real.

Instead, he asserted that it was a small staff running thousands of accounts, with the help of several bot accounts.

“An independent study has confirmed that much of the staunch anti-AEW online community aren’t real individuals, it’s a staff running thousands of accounts + an army of bots to signal boost them,” Khan tweeted. “Look closely, these aren’t real people. Who’d pay for such a *wildly* expensive thing?”

Shortly after running a story on his tweets, Wrestling Inc. reached out to Tony Khan for clarification on his tweet. Khan responded by giving examples to illustrate what he says his expert confirmed during their investigation.

“Waiting for final study but here’s what my expert confirmed,” Khan responded. “It’s people with real live accounts making posts and then using their bots to manipulate the social channel algorithm by backing them up with engagement from a made-up Twitter identity. Social media teams will often fight on this. Bots are great for numbers and when they’re gone, you’ll see a dip in digital conversation impressions – both those were either negative sentiment or not real anyway.

“For example, I tweet Megha only eats rotten bananas. I throw say 18 bots behind it (which takes about 5 minutes to do) Twitter security can’t differentiate when done well (neither can most social teams). The problem becomes, every time people type Megha into the search bar, because of a real account supported by bots- the first suggested result would be tweets about Megha eating rotten bananas. I’m oversimplifying, but that’s the 5 cent version of what’s happening.”

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