Twitter is changing the way the follower count is measured on its platform. The company today confirmed that it will no longer include accounts in publicly posted follower counts that have been locked for bad behavior. The accounts that Twitter locks for violation of its standards remain frozen until the user logs in again and resets their password. Such accounts will no longer be counted as followers of the accounts that they followed.
This means that users will notice a drop in their follower counts but Twitter says that it won’t be substantial.
Most users will only see their follower count drop by four or fewer followers. However, large accounts such as those of celebrities and politicians could lose a significant number of followers. The Washington Post reports that President Donald Trump’s account lost 100,000 followers immediately after this change was made while former President Barack Obama lost 400,000.
There are a variety of reasons why Twitter may lock an account. They include being blocked by a large number of accounts after the account mentions them, tweeting a significant volume of replies, posting misleading links, and more.
“We’re introducing a change to follower counts as part of our work to make Twitter a more trusted service for public conversation,” said Vijaya Gadde, a member of Twitter’s safety team, adding that “You should be confident that the follower numbers presented across Twitter are meaningful and accurate.”
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