Mufti، Shawky Allam has condemned buying social media followers and likes، decrying the act as deceptive and religiously “immoral.”، Newsweek reported.
Allam criticized the practice of purchasing engagement on Facebook as an act of “fraud،” that goes against Islamic principles. Far from going after the general use of the social media platform، however، Allam suggested permitted ways to do business on Facebook and even made the announcement via the platform itself.
Writing on the page of Dar al-Ifta، the religious institution tasked with interpreting scripture for Sunni Muslims in Egypt، Allam warned that what distinguishes improper behavior online is when a user engages in "deceptive" social media posts. Boosting content on your account to get a wider audience was permissible، as long as the post reflects reality، Allam argued. What is not acceptable is passing off mercenary interactions، such as bought likes or comments from fake accounts، as genuine engagement، because this is seeks to use dishonesty for building up followers.
“If likes are fake، or electronically generated، and do not resemble real individuals، then that would be considered impermissible given that it's a form of fraud،” Allam wrote on Facebook، according to a Washington Post translation from Arabic.