Avid Twitter followers last week may have noticed a change in their number of followers, as Twitter HQ launched a campaign against spam bots, fraudulent accounts and inconsistencies in their data. In their own words:
For some time, the follower and following counts we display have been incorrect for some folks. We’re soon to push a change that will address this issue. This means that the count you see in your sidebar should match what you see on your follower and following pages.
However, a consequence of this change is that follower counts will drop for some people. In particular, those with large followings may see significant changes as we correct for spam accounts and data inconsistencies. No legitimate followings should be affected—we’re just cleaning up artifacts in the system.
Personally I lost about 15% of my followers, despite keeping what I thought was a close eye on blocking suspect accounts. But it’s great – it gives me more peace of mind that the quality of my online community is a lot higher after the cleanse.
It is interesting to see that Kyle and Jackie O continue on their social media rollercoaster of Twitter followers. Twitterholic reports that in the past two weeks, they’ve gone from 268k to 580k to 320k in follower numbers. This makes a mockery of their claim that all of their followers are genuine.
It’s fantastic that Twitter are clamping down on fraudulent use of social media. As we mentioned in our earlier post on this topic, what’s the point of having thousands of followers if they aren’t real or active?