Published: Fri, July 13, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Celebrities lose followers amid crackdown — Fake Twitter users


Former President Obama lost more than 2 million followers on Twitter this week as the social platform removed inactive and locked accounts from follower counts, according to a preliminary review by The Hill.

Twitter is no longer counting as followers any accounts that have been locked because of suspected fraud, Chief Executive Jack Dorsey posted on Thursday.

For the average Twitter user, it is expected to be only a handful of accounts.

The company said follower counts may continue to change more regularly as part of ongoing work to proactively identify and challenge problematic accounts.

"This specific update is focused on followers because it is one of the most visible features on our service and often associated with account credibility", Vijaya Gadde, Twitter's legal, policy, and trust and safety lead, wrote in a blog post.

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The pair will then travel to Chequers - the PM's country residence in Buckinghamshire - for talks with the foreign secretary. Trump told the newspaper he had advised May on how to conduct Brexit negotiations, "but she didn't listen to me".


The accounts are locked if Twitter detects unusual behavior such as a burst of activity after months of dormancy.

President Trump and former president Barack Obama have both lost Twitter followers as a result of the social networking site purging questionable its accounts. In February megastar Amitabh Bachchan accused the social media giant of reducing the number of his followers.

The Washington Post reported last week that Twitter has suspended more than one million accounts a day in recent months, and the rate has more than doubled since October, when the company, under congressional pressure, revealed how Russians used fake accounts to manipulate the US presidential election. Katy Perry started off with 109 million followers, and a 2.8 million drop represents a decline of approximately 2.6%. This week, the company said it will remove these from profiles, reducing the number of followers users have.

Twitter said that most users will see a drop of "four followers or fewer".

Actor Deepika Padukone lost over 2.8 lakh followers, Aamir Khan 3 lakh, Hrithik Roshan 2.55 lakh, cricketer Virat Kohli 1.25 lakh and Sachin Tendulkar 2 lakh.

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