Bots are copy/pasting on Twitter with reckless abandon, but hopefully not for much longer
“Copypasta” runs rampant on Twitter.
I think it’s widely agreed that social media is basically trash at this point. There are some redeeming features, sure, but there’s just so much trash to navigate through that it basically makes it not worth it. One thing that has been popping up on Twitter recently is the use of “copypasta.” Basically, a bunch of people taking the same thought and posting it as their own, or as replies to tweets. Like, the exact same wording and everything.
It’s not always political, but recently, political copypasta has been rampant on the platform. Much of the copypasta is suspected to come from bots on the platform being used to push agendas or just cause a ruckus on someone’s tweet. Other people rip people’s unique thoughts and share them as their own in an effort to go viral and increase their follower count.
In a tweet, Twitter notes it is working on lowering the visibility of phrases and tweets that are shared in great numbers.
We’ve seen an increase in ‘copypasta,’ an attempt by many accounts to copy, paste, and Tweet the same phrase. 🍝🔁
When we see this behavior, we may limit the visibility of the Tweets. https://t.co/OCVudJPXPm
— Twitter Comms (@TwitterComms) August 27, 2020
In the post linked in the tweet above, Twitter notes that “When abuse or manipulation of our service is reported or detected, we may take action to limit the reach of a person’s Tweets. Learn more about actions we take, including temporary and permanent account suspensions, and limiting account functionality.”
Twitter does preface that by saying that it does not “block, limit, or remove content based on an individual’s views or opinions,” but that it certain instances (see above) the tweet may not be seen by everyone.
There’s no word on when or how Twitter really plans on rolling this out. I would imagine that the copypasta will have to hit a certain number of duplicate shares before they are even on Twitter’s radar. At this time, it’s also not exactly clear on how it will limit the visibility. It’s possible the company will just bunch them under the “See more replies” section of a tweet or possibly add a warning label to the tweet.
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