I signed into Twitter and looked at my Follower count.
Yesterday it was about 3,500-and something (maybe 3,572?).
This morning it was this:
It added over fourteen thousand “Followers” overnight.
No, I am not popular like that.
This is what has happened to my Connect tab now:
All tweets below that enumeration — tweets that people sent me overnight and I was going to read this morning — have been wiped out!
And all of these new “Followers” are like this:
They are all spammers!
How the hell can I Block over fourteen thousand people?
Some people are speculating that someone bought me Followers as a harassment tactic.
There’s someone well known in my Twitter periphery who has been on a tear against certain people I Follow, harassing them for a full year now with sockpuppet Twitter accounts and fake blogs. Up until now, I’ve been untouched by that. If that person has done this, he’s just exposed a huge vulnerability in Twitter that can ruin the experience for everyone.
How long before people who are single-minded in their politics start “Follower bombing” their “adversaries” like that?
How long before the entire Twitter experience is ruined because spammers inflate everyone’s Follower counts and make even things like Klout worthless?
What will this even do to Twitter’s ability to sell advertising? It’s own bottom line is jeopardized too.
Twitter has an influence far beyond its own audience. And this new tactic can have repercussions far outside of Twitter itself.
This is something Twitter must address ASAP.
And if anyone at Twitter is reading this, please purge my account of everyone who “Followed” me after I signed out last night around 9:30PM EDST.