Meet Wade Gratton

Wade Gratton is 71-years-old, a graduate of Union College, and a devoted naturist. He is also among the millions of fake people on Facebook. Recent news stories detail how Facebook hosts as many as 83 million “illegitimate accounts.”

 Gratton’s persona was manufactured several years ago as part of a marketing campaign at my former place of employment. We needed to make the fictional “Henry Hudson Nudist Camp” seem like a real place, so we concocted an online presence complete with web page and Facebook pages. It was convincing enough to even generate a modest amount of media attention.

 Anyway, sorry Facebook for ignoring your terms of service and all, it was just in the name of good fun. But here’s the thing: it was so easy to become real on Facebook. We were just up to something harmless, but it’s scary to think how it could be exploited for evil purposes by creeps and criminals.

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