My spooky followers on Twitter

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Tim Lund
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Joined: 13 Mar 2008 18:10
Location: Silverdale

My spooky followers on Twitter

Post by Tim Lund » 15 May 2018 17:11

Just in case I needed any confirmation that Russian troll factories were still out there and active, I was surprised a day or so ago to get two new followers on Twitter


It has to be because, after reading this piece in the New York Times

Meet the Renegades of the Intellectual Dark Web

on some leading conservative intellectuals, I thought I'd follow one I wasn't already. Hope anyone reading this notices how broad the range is of accounts I do follow


So, someone is running some code picking up people who start to follow at least one of these conservative intellectuals, and follows them, which naturally interests the person being followed in who they might be. So I have a quick look at their time lines, and oddly enough it seems to be all about trying to undermine the legitimacy of the the Mueller inquiry.

Who would have guessed?

How do we as a society deal with this? I'd like to think GCHQ has some code in turn monitoring the trolls, and maybe then monitoring me to see if I start buying into their propaganda. I guess that's how MI5 monitor Islamicists getting radicalised on line.

How spooky is this? I tend to accept that this is just how things are, and that the main way to deal with it is for people to understand how it works, hence posting here.
Last edited by Tim Lund on 16 May 2018 15:57, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: My spooky followers on Twitter

Post by JGD » 16 May 2018 08:03


And one should not assume that these trolls are data miners operating on faraway shores.

I have seen reports about local code cutters being very concerned about their preparations to ensure they meet the requirements of the new General Data Protection Regulations 2016 (GDPR) with respect to the data they store and compile.

About what and why should they be so concerned, I wonder ?

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Re: My spooky followers on Twitter

Post by Parker1970 » 16 May 2018 11:52

There are loads of twitter bot's in use that crawl twitter looking for mentions, keywords or follows. The only way to avoid it is to set your profile to private.

I tweeted once about almost putting deep heat on my toothbrush rather than toothpaste in a moment of tiredness and just hours later I was followed by Colgate.

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Re: My spooky followers on Twitter

Post by mosy » 16 May 2018 13:22

Twitter itself is "interesting". I registered years ago but have never ever posted nor clicked Like or Follow. I did open a Greyhound link once and ever since I've received bi-weekly emails of things I'm told I'll want to see, which I don't, so never click on "Show images" etc which have gotchas embedded. So why bother emailing me? I guess they're desperate not to lose their audience, especially if they can sell our data even if I naively believe it is in composited anonymous form.

The mischievous side of me says I could tweet all sorts of rubbish and see what happens ... :evil: It seems Tim Lund that you've inadvertently already been there done that ;)

PS: Why is this in the Town Hall?

Tim Lund
Posts: 6687
Joined: 13 Mar 2008 18:10
Location: Silverdale

Re: My spooky followers on Twitter

Post by Tim Lund » 16 May 2018 15:56

mosy wrote: PS: Why is this in the Town Hall?
  • Discussion is more polite than in the Town Pub,
  • I sometimes send links to things I write on the Forum, and it doesn't work if you need to be logged in to see it
  • Although general, it's still relevant to politics here in LB Lewisham, which I think is where such discussions should be
But over to Admin if he/she wants to move it

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