Thursday, May 24, 2012
I know a lot has already been written in various blogs about Twittergulag. But one more can’t hurt.
What is Twittergulag?
Twittergulag is different than Twitmo. Twitmo is just a temporary suspension of your ability to send tweets. It ends quickly. Your posts and follows are not affected. All it means is that you’ve been tweeting fast and furiously and Twitter is telling you to slow it down. Twitmo is no big deal.
Twittergulag on the other hand is suspension of your account. Your tweets disappear while you are on suspension. No one can follow, and you can’t add followers. In fact, your follow lists disappear from your profile. Anyone clicking on your username will be advised that you are suspended. You need to take action with Twitter to try to get unsuspended; it does not happen automatically as is the case with Twitmo.
Twitter has various algorithms, all deep dark secrets, that serve to alert them to spammers. Spammers are suspended. You may trip the algorithm quite innocently, by initiating contact with a lot of people in a short time. If you have little original content but are constantly replying to people, so that most of your tweets begin with “@”, it can look like you’re a spammer. New users should take care to post their own original content on a regular basis, to assure Twitter you’re not a spambot. Also, when replying to someone, put text in front of the @mention.
That’s normal suspension. However, you may also be a victim of false spam flagging. This is when a group of people with whom you’ve interacted all block and report you as spam within a short period of time. Enough false spam reports and it’s off to the gulag with you. You need to be vigilant about being baited into a conversation with too many people with whom you disagree over a short time. It’s been rumored that the people doing the false spam flagging delete their own tweets where they’ve reference you, making it look as if you are the one harassing them without reason.
We’re all on Twitter to express our opinions and get the truth out there. We all want to counter the false narratives of the other side. So how can we refute the lies and distortions if we can’t respond to the people spreading them?
If you’re lucky, the matter about which you’re arguing is being identified under a single hashtag or two. Just use the hashtag. Say what you need to say. Feel free to reference a disagreeable user, but don’t address your tweet directly to them. You might want to play it a little safer by not using their user name at all.
For example, instead of replying ‘”@libahole, you’ve been drinking the #stoprush kool-aid” reply “Seems a certain libahole has been drinking the #stoprush kool-aid” or “Hey @libahole, you’ve been drinking the #stoprush kool-aid”.
The false spam flaggers will try to get you replying to many of them in the same tweet. Avoid this at all costs. If you mention several unfriendlies several times, their spam reports will be given more weight. It’s important to remember that spam reports are taken more seriously if there has been interaction. Spam flagging an account where there has been no interaction is not nearly as effective in tripping the spam algorithm as when there has been direct contact.
Help, They Hauled Me To Twittergulag Anyway
Despite your best efforts, maybe a few too many tweets in the heat of a spirited disagreement, you’ve been hauled off to Twittergulag. What to do?
First, file a report with Twitter support. You can’t do this if signed into the suspended account, so sign out, go to Twitter support and file report that your account has been suspended.
Next, watch your email for the response from Twitter. You MUST respond to this email to even get them to review your suspension. Explain you violated no terms of service, that you think you may have been falsely flagged for spam, and then, be patient. It takes time for them to get to you. Do not send repeated emails, that just gets you sent back to the bottom of the pile. Next, get a new account with a different e-mail. Report the suspension using #twittergulag hashtag. There are many concerned fellow conservatives watching this hashtag who will make noise about any unfair suspensions due to spam flag abuse, and are fighting for an end to this kind of abuse of the system. Your new name will get retweeted by many conservatives and you’ll likely pick up new followers. So there is a bright side 🙂
Like I said, a lot has been written and tweeted about Twittergulag. I just wanted to compile some of the most useful tips and tricks I’ve seen and heard about, on Twitter and on blogs. For more information, I recommend: