[QODLink]
Listening Post
Trending on Twitter: Fake accounts
A look at fraudsters impersonating real celebrities, politicians and corporations on Twitter.
Last Modified: 26 Jan 2012 11:10

In the five years since its creation, the micro-blogging website Twitter has gone from being branded a flash-in-the-pan social media website to an indispensable tool in the news game. It is more than just a self-promotional tool for attention-seeking celebrities.

Twitter is playing a central role in the coverage and distribution of breaking news stories. But within this rapidly expanding medium, there is a growing trend: fake Twitter accounts - fraudsters impersonating real celebrities, politicians and in some cases even corporations are making mischief and scoring political points. 

The practice violates Twitter's terms and conditions but it is not entirely clear what the site can do about it. And until it does find a way to stop the trend, we get to sit back and enjoy the fake tweets that seem to say more about the people and institutions they represent than the real tweets do.

The Listening Post's Nick Muirhead looks at some of the fake Twitter accounts that have caused a stir.

"I actually think that the fake accounts add to the value of Twitter, it shows that you can have a lot of fun. I think the danger of Twitter is that we take it too seriously. Because it's [a] 140 character, public instant messaging platform that has taken off. That's all it is."

Andrew Keen, author

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Featured
Lacking cohesive local ground forces to attack in tandem, coalition air strikes will have limited effect, experts say.
Hindu right-wing groups run campaign against what they say is Muslim conspiracy to convert Hindu girls into Islam.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
Muslim caretakers maintain three synagogues in eastern Indian city, which was once home to a thriving Jewish community.
Amid fresh ISIL gains, officials in Anbar province have urged the Iraqi government to request foreign ground troops.