Tuesday March 19, 2019
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Twitter Goes After Spams and Trolls, Some Users to Lose Followers

To make it harder to register spam accounts, Twitter will now require new accounts to confirm either an email address or phone number when they sign up to the platform

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Twitter
Twitter India celebrates rising women achievers. Pixabay

To address the problem of increasing spam accounts and trolls on its platform, Twitter has introduced tough policies that will soon see some users losing fake followers globally.

In May, Twitter identified and challenged more than 9.9 million potentially “spammy” or automated accounts per week — up from 6.4 million in December and 3.2 million in September 2017.

Twitter said late Tuesday that it will take further action to challenge a large number of suspected spam accounts globally.

As a result of these improvements, some people may notice their own account metrics change more regularly.

“This is an important shift in how we display Tweet and account information to ensure that malicious actors aren’t able to artificially boost an account’s credibility permanently by inflating metrics like the number of followers,” Twitter said in a blog post.

Some people may see their follower counts drop but this does not mean they did anything wrong, the company said.

To make it harder to register spam accounts, Twitter will now require new accounts to confirm either an email address or phone number when they sign up to the platform.

“This is an important change to defend against people who try to take advantage of our openness,” Twitter said in a blog post.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

“Due to technology and process improvements during the past year, we are now removing 214 per cent more accounts for violating our spam policies on a year-on-year basis,” it added.

Twitter saw a drop in the average number of spam reports — from an average of approximately 25,000 per day in March, to approximately 17,000 per day in May.

“We’ve also seen a 10 per cent drop in spam reports from search as a result of our recent changes. These decreases in reports received means people are encountering less spam in their timeline, search, and across the Twitter product,” the company said.

Twitter currently has 330 million user accounts.

“We’re also moving rapidly to curb spam and abuse originating via Twitter’s APIs. In Q1 2018, we suspended more than 142,000 applications in violation of our rules — collectively responsible for more than 130 million low-quality, spammy tweets,” the blog post said.

Also Read: Facebook and Twitter Account Blocks Without Notice: Hezbollah

To reduce the visibility of suspicious accounts in Tweet and account metrics, the company said it has started updating account metrics in near-real time.

“For example, the number of followers an account has, or the number of likes or Retweets a Tweet receives, will be correctly updated when we take action on accounts,” it added.

Twitter is also automating some processes where it sees suspicious account activity, like exceptionally high-volume tweeting with the same hashtag, or using the same @handle without a reply from the account a user has mentioned.

Twitter said it will continue to invest in leveraging Machine Learning (ML) technology and partnerships with third parties. (IANS)

Next Story

Twitter Testing ‘Subscribe to Conversation’ Feature For its Users

Although, there was no indication yet if or when Twitter will deploy the change platform-wide

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Twitter, India, Smartphone
Twitter on a smartphone device. Pixabay

Micro-blogging site Twitter is testing a “subscibe to conversation” feature that would notify users everytime a tweet is added to the conversation in order to keep up with it, without actually becoming a part of the thread.

The prototype feature, that comes as a bell icon above conversation threads was spotted by reverse engineer Jane Manchun in the app’s Android version.

“This is part of our work to make Twitter more conversational,” the micro-blogging site said on Friday.

Twitter CEO
This April 26, 2017, photo shows the Twitter app icon on a mobile phone in Philadelphia. VOA

Lately, Twitter has been exploring new ways of protecting its users from hate, abusive content and fake news.

“Because of this ‘subscribe to conversation’ feature, users would not need to like or comment in a thread to receive updates and this could add a bit of anonymity,” Engadget reported.

Also Read- Concerns Rise Over China’s Stand at United Nations Human Rights Council

Although, there was no indication yet if or when Twitter will deploy the change platform-wide

Earlier this week, the company launched its beta app “Twttr” that comes with special colour specifications for conversations. It has also been experimenting with profile preview feature and an “original tweeter” labels. (IANS)