Lake Stevens halts Facebook comments due to ‘fake city profiles’

Dec 14, 2022, 11:19 AM
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

Lake Stevens residents may find they are no longer able to make comments on the city’s Facebook page.

The Everett Herald reports the city shut down commenting on what appears to be most of its posts, saying there has been a rise in spam from fake accounts in the comments sections, which has been disrupting the city’s ability to disseminate important information.

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A message inserted below multiple Facebook posts tells users the city has “limited who can comment on this post.”

In a post made Dec. 6, officials who run the page cited a surge of “fake city profiles” in the comments sections.

The City says it simply doesn’t have enough staff to constantly monitor the situation, but did not offer specific details about the fake profiles or their comments.

“The City of Lake Stevens has a long-standing policy of not responding to comments on social media. During the last week of November, City staff spent valuable time reacting to fake city profiles on our Facebook/social media page,” according to the City of Lake Stevens Facebook.

“As we do not have enough staff to monitor these social media interactions for nefarious activity, the decision was made to turn off the comments area of our Facebook page. Residents can still share our posts and make comments in other groups,” the post continued.

Lake Stevens residents tell the Everett Herald they hadn’t seen any of the mentioned spam, but that most conversations between commenters discussed dissatisfaction with city leadership.

Some have raised issues with the loss of a public forum that they can use to provide feedback to the city.

KIRO Newsradio has reached out to multiple Lake Stevens officials and has yet to hear back.

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Lake Stevens halts Facebook comments due to ‘fake city profiles’