Aug 24, 2012

How can I find out if twitter followers are real people?

There have been stories about the Romney presidential campaign and the artificially inflated number of twitter followers after that number spiked from about 650,000 to 800,000 literally overnight (after a long period of steady increase of about 3,500 a day). It didn't take long for someone to notice that extra 146,500 followers that appeared, although it isn't clear whether it was the campaign itself trying to inflate the numbers or perhaps an overly enthusiastic backer trying to make him look good. Whatever, that's irrelevant anyway. I couldn't help wondering about my own twitter account. Is there a way to figure out whether your followers are actually real, carbon-based life forms or bots living in some advert firm's server?

Here's an article on how to get real Twitter followers:

How To Get Real Twitter Followers

Apparently lots of Obama followers are also fake:

Obama has millions of fake Twitter followers

"President Obama's Twitter account has 18.8 million followers -- but more than half of them really don't exist, according to reports.

A new Web tool has determined that 70% of Obama's crowd includes "fake followers," The New York Times reports in a story about how Twitter followers can be purchased.

"The practice has become so widespread that StatusPeople, a social media management company in London, released a Web tool last month called the Fake Follower Check that it says can ascertain how many fake followers you and your friends have," the Times reports."


It's pretty easy.  Log on to twitter, then use the statuspeople web app to see if your followers are fake or real.  I had about 10% bots/spam followers.  It allows you to check other twitter users percentage of fakes as well, so you can end up wasting time looking up other people too.  Just for fun, I checked @mittromney and saw 22% "fake", 31% "inactive" and 47% "good", so you can see how you compare.    



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