Obama loses more than 2 million Twitter followers amid crackdown

Sergio Cunningham
July 14, 2018

President Trump now has around 53.1 million followers, according to his account page.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress President Rahul Gandhi, among others on Friday lost thousands of Twitter followers after the micro-blogging site deleted several suspicious and inactive accounts. Mr Bieber, who has the second most followed account on the site, suffered the same fate, losing nearly 2.7m 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, Twitter's head of legal, policy, trust and safety, wrote in a blog.

Perry still has a cool 107 million followers, while Rihanna has 86.8 million of her own. Twitter on Thursday kicked off its latest effort to rid the platform of fake or frozen accounts.

By cracking down on fake accounts, Twitter hopes to restore faith in the controversy-ridden platform where influence-from entertainment to politics-can be inflated by automated or fake followers, the New York Times reports.

The number of Modi's followers went down to 43.1 million from 43.4 million.

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"In most cases, these accounts were created by real people, but we can not confirm that the original person who opened the account still has control and access to it", he wrote in a blog post describing the change.

Former White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said Thursday that Twitter "removed 4,000 of my followers" as the social networking site purged fake accounts - including 300,000 reportedly from President Donald Trump's feed - that were disabled because of suspicious activity.

On Wednesday, Twitter said it was making the change in order to boost the credibility of follower-count numbers and improve transparency.

The company said follower counts may continue to change more regularly as part of ongoing work to proactively identify and challenge problematic accounts.

Mr Trump lost over 304,140 followers from the start of the week, while Mr Johnson lost 28,961.

Nyakundi's followers have reduced from a whopping 1.2 million to 696,000 while Dela's numbers now stand at 521,000 from an impressive one million.

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