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Twitter purge means fewer followers for Trump, Obama, Justin Bieber

13 July 2018

Twitter's primary account seems to have taken the greatest hit, dropping from 62.85 million to 55.35 million followers on Thursday - a drop of 12%.

Celebrities on Twitter have suffered a cull in millions of their followers after the social media giant performed a purge on dormant and locked accounts this week. Controversial blogger, Cyprian Nyakundi, has lost quite a lot of followers, from over 1 million to now below 700K.

Social blade, a software that helps track social media stats, threw interesting insights into how politicians fared after Twitter's war on fake followers.

"Most people will see a change of four followers or fewer; others with larger follower counts will experience a more significant drop", Vijaya Gadde, who heads up Twitter's Legal, Policy, Trust and Safety department, wrote in a blog post discussing the purge.

For Twitter, anyone who tweets a large volume of unsolicited replies, unnecessarily tags a large number of people or tweets misleading links becomes a suspicious user.

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Katy Perry, the most-followed user on Twitter, and Lady Gaga lost about 2.5 million followers.

The drop in the follower count, however, has nothing to do with popularity of the Modi government. This is part of a broader effort to fight trolls, fake news, and disinformation on the platform.

By contrast, former President Barack Obama's count fell by 2.1 million followers, or 2.1 percent, to 101.5 million.

Popular radio presenter Shaffie Weru also spoke about the purge making light of the situation noting: "Twitter is doing away with all fake followers.nobody can stop reggae my frens (friends), we are all dying". "We understand this may be hard for some, but we believe accuracy and transparency make Twitter a more trusted service for public conversation", Twitter reiterated.

"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", she added. With the removal of a number of accounts, Donald Trump ended up losing close to 200,000 "followers" that he speaks to in a limited amount of characters.

Twitter purge means fewer followers for Trump, Obama, Justin Bieber