3 Twitter Facts You'll Never Forget

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3 Twitter Facts You'll Never Forget

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Xah Lee, 2010-10-26

New twitter realizations.

Mutual Following

Those with huge but about equal number following/followers, means they just do mutual follow. Actual readership is probably near 0. Most these are i think are “seo” shit. They get 10k followers to brag on their website.

There are 100M twitter accounts. Suppose 1% of twitter population are these mutual followers. Then, we have 1M accounts who all having about 1M followers. (M = mega = million) That's why we see so much sites bragging huge twitter followers.

Anyone who follows more than 100 probably isn't reading any of it. Suppose someone follows 100 accounts. Suppose each of these has 1 tweet with link per day. That's 100 links. I think it's safe to say that 90% of those who follows more than 100 twitter accounts only click on 1% of the links in the tweets.

This means, if you get followed by someone who follows huge number of other accounts (i.e. you are just a drop of water in his follow pool), and if his tweets doesn't seem to have anything to do with your interests, chances are, you've been hit for his “follower count increment”.

Many of “seo” shit accounts do the mutual-following. They follow you, and if you didn't follow back, in a couple of days, they unfollow.

Am pretty sure there are lots of “seo” software that does the random follow, wait, drop, stuff. They are likely automatically done by software (just web search for “twitter follow”, “twitter unfollow”, “twitter tools”, “twitter tracker”, “twitter tips” etc, you'll get lots things to read.)

Even though huge number of twitter followers may still mean zero readership, but the bragging right might be useful. For example, advertisers might fall for your “this blog has 10k twitter followers”.

Bots Penetration

It's trivial to write a automated twitter software (called bots). There are lots twit bots. If we assume 0.1% twitter account are bots, that means 1M accounts are bots. Actually, the bot account may be significantly higher. Around 2007, i read on Wikipedia that some 80% blogger accounts are spammer accounts. Am guessing perhaps 1% or even much more of twitter accounts are bots, or human assisted bots.

Also remember, all the blurbs and photos in the profile can be fake. It is incredibly easy to forget this fact. So, you should take this approach instead: unless you actually know the other person, or thru a real life friend, then consider any new tweet account a upfront lie.

Been using twitter for about few months now. The more i think about this, the sadder it become. Sure twitter has its uses, in keeping up with close friends, spreading news and info, as well as legitimate and practically useful marketing for reputable businesses. But am beginning to think that vast majority of it is pure worthless shit (e.g. 90% of the twitter traffic are never read by anyone.).

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