A recent audit provided by software company SparkToro indicated that almost half of President Joe Biden’s current 22.2 million followers are fake accounts.
According to a report by Newsweek the fake accounts are part of the issue brought to the surface by Tesla CEO Elon Musk who expressed concern that the number of fake accounts could see users like Biden lose massive amounts of followers.
“Musk said early on Tuesday that his $44-billion deal to purchase the social media company could not go ahead until issues with fake accounts were resolved and he appeared to criticize Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal,” Newsweek reported.
The world’s richest man has claimed that he has reasons to think that as much as 20% (or more) of the total number of accounts on Twitter are “fake/spam accounts” and that the figure could be “4 times what Twitter claims, could be *much* higher.”
“My offer was based on Twitter’s SEC filings being accurate,” Musk wrote. “Yesterday, Twitter’s CEO publicly refused to show proof of <5%. This deal cannot move forward until he does.”
Musk has not divulged how he came to the conclusion that 20 percent of the Twitter population are made up of fake accounts, however he and Agrawal exchanged a series of tweets about the issue Monday:
“We suspend over half a million spam accounts every day, usually before any of you even see them on Twitter. We also lock millions of accounts each week that we suspect may be spam, if they can’t pass human verification challenges (captchas, phone verification, etc),” Agrawal wrote.
SparkToro defines fake followers as “accounts that are unreachable and will not see the account’s tweets (either because they’re spam, bots, propaganda, etc. or because they’re no longer active on Twitter).”
During it’s analysis the software company found that Biden’s account has more fake followers than most, however Musk is also sporting a huge amount of fake followers, with SparkToro’s tool estimating as many as 70 percent might be fake accounts.