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Nearly Half Of Biden’s Personal Twitter Account Followers Are ‘Fake’ And ‘Inactive’: Report

   DailyWire.com
US President Joe Biden speaks about the May 2022 Jobs Report from the Rehoboth Beach Convention Center on June 3, 2022, in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
(MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

The creator of the audit tool SparkToro has commented on the Newsweek reporting, saying that it has only run its premium analytics tool on Biden’s personal account, @JoeBiden, and not on Biden’s official account, @POTUS. SparkToro noted that the free Fake Followers tool, which Newsweek ran on Biden’s official account, includes “inactive” followers in its analysis.

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Nearly half of President Joe Biden’s Twitter followers are fake accounts, according to a report.

An audit of Biden’s official @POTUS Twitter account found that 49.3% of the Twitter users who follow the account are “fake followers,” Newsweek initially reported Tuesday. To conduct the audit, Newsweek used a free version of a follower audit tool, called “Fake Followers,” created by data analytics firm SparkToro.

The co-founder of SparkToro, Rand Fishkin, has criticized the Newsweek reporting, stating that SparkToro has only run its premium analytics tool on Biden’s personal account, @JoeBiden. SparkToro has not run its premium tool on Biden’s official account, @POTUS. Instead, Newsweek ran SparkToro’s free Fake Followers tool on Biden’s official account. Fishkin noted that the free Fake Followers tool includes “inactive” followers in its analysis, followers who are unlikely to login to Twitter and see the tweets of the accounts they follow.

According to the Fake Followers tool, which also comes with a premium version, the @POTUS Twitter account has about 10.9 million “fake followers” out of 22.2 million total, which make up 49.3% of the account’s followers. That number is relatively high for an account of that size. The median percentage of “fake followers” for an account of similar size is 41%, putting the @POTUS account on the high end of the spectrum. The low end of the spectrum for an account of similar size is about 25% “fake followers.”

The tool 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 or because they’re no longer active on Twitter).” To conduct the audit itself, the tool samples 2,000 random users picked from the 100,000 users who followed the audited account most recently. The tool then analyzes the followers, using more than 25 factors that correlate with “spam/bot/low quality accounts.” SparkToro notes that while none of these indicators alone point to a fake account, when multiple indicators are present, there is “strong correlation with low quality.”

According to the tool, 81% of the audited sample consisted of followers who had created accounts in the last 90 days; 93% had profile URLs that were not correct; 91% had a “suspiciously small number of followers”; 88% “follow an unusually small number of accounts”; 24% had a default profile picture; 45% had display names with spam-correlated signals; and 72% had spam-correlated signals in their biographies.

According to Twitter Audit, another free analytical tool, the @POTUS account has only 4.1% “fake followers.”

Biden’s personal account has a somewhat lower percentage of “fake followers,” according to the report. The audit tool found that the @JoeBiden account had 43% “fake followers,” equal to about 14.7 million followers out of about 34 million total. Biden’s account was much more toward the median percentage than @POTUS. Still, some 55% of sampled followers had not been active for more than 120 days; 60% had a “suspiciously small number of followers”; 47% followed “an unusually small number of accounts”; and 87% had suspicious profile URLs.

SparkToro also conducted a premium, large-scale audit of Twitter. In a blog post Sunday, SparkToro reported the results of a joint audit with another firm called Followerwonk, of more than 44,000 accounts active in the last 90 days. The audit found that 19.42% of active accounts were likely to be fake. Also in its report, SparkToro estimated that 22.35% of accounts were fake, using data aggregated from the more than 500,000 accounts audited using the tool over 3.5 years. That percentage was four times more than Twitter’s Q4 2021 estimate of the percentage of spam accounts on the platform.

SparkToro’s figure was likely cited by billionaire Elon Musk when he threw his agreement to buy the platform into question Tuesday. “20% fake/spam accounts, while 4 times what Twitter claims, could be *much* higher,” Musk tweeted. “My offer was based on Twitter’s SEC filings being accurate. Yesterday, Twitter’s CEO publicly refused to show proof of <5%. This deal cannot move forward until he does.”

After publication, The Daily Wire added that SparkToro has commented on the Newsweek reporting, stating that SparkToro has only run its premium analytics tool on Biden’s personal account, @JoeBiden, and not Biden’s official account, @POTUS. SparkToro stated that Newsweek ran SparkToro’s free Fake Followers tool on Biden’s official account. SparkToro also noted that the free Fake Followers tool includes “inactive” followers in its analysis, which are followers who are unlikely to login to Twitter and see the tweets of the accounts they follow.

The Daily Wire also added that according to Twitter Audit, another free analytics tool, Biden’s official account has only 4.1% “fake followers.”