Twitter removes hundreds of accounts related to state-linked information operations
On Thursday, Twitter cut down on what term it as “state-backed information operations” gloom descended on the types who start their morning checking follower count.
The drop in Twitter follower count ranges from hundreds to thousands, according to the users.
This is not the first time that Twitter users have reported a drop in their follower count. Earlier, in June, Twitter had run a similar operation when famous personalities on the site, including actor Anupam Kher, tweeted about losing 80,000 followers within a few days.
Twitter’s explanation was blunt and didn’t involve the thriving bots in six other countries along with India.
“We first published a comprehensive, public archive of data related to state-backed information operations three years ago. We’ve made improvements, and iterated on our approach over time. Since that first disclosure in October 2018, we’ve shared 37 datasets of attributed platform manipulation campaigns originating from 17 countries, spanning more than 200 million tweets and nine terabytes of media.”
“Today, we’re disclosing an additional 3,465 accounts to our archive of state-linked information operations – the only one of its kind in the industry.”
“The account sets include eight distinct operations we’ve attributed to six countries – Mexico, the People’s Republic of China, Russia, Tanzania, Uganda, and Venezuela, respectively. Every account and piece of content associated with these operations have been permanently removed from the service.”
While multiple publishers ranging from actor Anupam Kher (said he lost 80k) to bureaucrat Sonal Goel (5k and therefore aggregating 299k) posted about the “loss”. Even Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal lost follows.
Early Friday (IST) some publishers said their follows were restored.
Meanwhile, the Twitter platform poured in with a reaction from its users.
One of the users tweeted, “Everyone lost followers. Stop taking these numbers personally. Twitter is a great place to learn, find interesting opinions, share yours, build community, advocate for social change, and more. Follower count though, it’s a vanity metric. Can’t believe people are sad over it!”
Everyone lost followers. Stop taking these numbers personally.
Twitter is a great place to learn, find interesting opinions, share yours, build community, advocate for social change, and more.
Follower count though, it’s a vanity metric. Can’t believe people are sad over it!
— Shivam Shankar Singh (@ShivamShankarS) December 2, 2021
One tweet read, “Agarwal Saab Saaf-Saaf bolo Chahtey Kya ho? (Agarwal sir, tell us clearly, what do you want?)
Agarwal Saab Saaf-Saaf bolo Chahtey Kya ho ?#twitterblades
— Ravinder Singh Robin ਰਵਿੰਦਰ ਸਿੰਘ رویندرسنگھ روبن (@rsrobin1) December 2, 2021
“If you have lost Twitter followers today suddenly, don’t worry. Everyone has. Bots are being deleted by Twitter,” tweeted senior journalist, Aditya Raj Kaul|Twitter.
If you have lost twitter followers today suddenly, don’t worry. Everyone has. Bots are being deleted by twitter.
— Aditya Raj Kaul (@AdityaRajKaul) December 2, 2021
One user tweeted, “Follower count down from 216K to 215k. Good to see that under Parag Agrawal, Twitter is removing bots and fake accounts aggressively. We all deserve a cleaner platform.”
Follower count down from 216K to 215k.
Good to see that under @paraga Twitter is removing bots and fake accounts aggressively. We all deserve a cleaner platform 👍
— Arun Bothra 🇮🇳 (@arunbothra) December 2, 2021
[With Inputs from IANS]
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