Jul 13 2018

Erdoğan loses 200,000 Twitter followers in fake account purge

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan lost more than 200,000 followers on Twitter in a single day during a purge of fake accounts by the U.S. company, the New York Times reported.

Erdoğan’s following dropped to 13 million from 13.2 million between Wednesday and Thursday, as an operation by Twitter continued. Others to be affected in the region included Queen Rania of Jordon, who lost 300,000 followers to 10.6 million, the newspaper said.

Twitter is seeking to restore trust in its platform as many users inflated their followings with automated or fake accounts, buying the appearance of popularity and social influence.

The biggest losers among politicians also included President Donald Trump, who shed about 340,000 followers to 53 million. Barack Obama lost three million to 101 million.

Twitter expects to have reduced the total follower count on its platform by about 6 percent once the work is done, the New York Times said.

Aly Pavela, a spokeswoman for the company, said work would continue over the coming days.