Trump complains about Twitter removing his followers
US President Donald Trump complained Friday that Twitter is removing some of his followers and has made it harder to join , an apparent critique of the social network ’ s efforts to weed out fake and abusive accounts .
Trump , who has some 55 million Twitter followers, revived his argument about “ bias ” by internet firms in a morning tweet that suggested growth in his network was slowing .
“ Twitter has removed many people from my account and , more importantly , they have seemingly done something that makes it much harder to join — they have stifled growth to a point where it is obvious to all , ” he wrote .
“ A few weeks ago it was a Rocket Ship , now it is a Blimp ! Total Bias ?”
Trump ’ s remarks appeared aimed at Twitter ’ s efforts to weed out fake and “ spam ” accounts to improve the health and safety of the platform .
For months , Twitter has sought to eliminate automated and bogus accounts designed to manipulate the public conversation on Twitter , in response to concerns over Russian interference in the 2016 election .
Twitter said this week the number of active users fell by nine million in the past quarter as a result of these efforts .
Asked about the president ’ s comments , a Twitter spokesman said : “ Our focus is on the health of the service , and that includes work to remove fake accounts to prevent malicious behavior .
“ Many prominent accounts have seen follower counts drop , but the result is higher confidence that the followers they have are real , engaged people . ”
According to the social media monitoring website TwitterCounter , Trump has not lost any followers in the past month but the rate of growth of followers appears to have slowed .
He went from 54 . 7 million followers on September 26 to some 55 . 3 million Friday , with little or no change over the past week .
The topic of fake followers has long been controversial on social media , and one research group said this month that more than 60 percent of Trump ’ s followers were “ bots, spam, inactive or propaganda. ”
The report by SparkToro said the @ realdonaldtrump account “ has significantly higher numbers ( of fake or suspect followers) than any other American politician we could find . ”
SparkToro said in analyzing Trump ’ s account , 72 percent of followers had been inactive for at least 120 days , 36 percent use Twitter ’ s default profile image and 92 percent don’ t link to a website in their profile or use one with spam patterns .
Trump has previously accused internet firms of bias or suppressing conservative voices , despite little evidence to back up the claim .
( AFP )
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