Most of you that read LaptopMemo on a daily basis (lowest being 3,500 people everyday), would possibly know that I’m quite the avid Twitter user, as @stefanetienne. You may have seen me in funny conversations between other tech bloggers, either mocking them, making fun of them, making fun of myself, getting schooled by them, showing off Twitpics of new review devices, or tweeting new Black Ops K/D ratios. It also turns out that I have quite the following; some of the most influential persons on the internet, to some of the most influential technology (and then some) companies in the world.
But this post isn’t about me. Oh, no, no, no. It’s about Twitter. Fix the spam. Fix it. Fix it, now.
You see, as avid as a user I am, I’m very familiar with Twitter spam. If you tweet something out with the name of a device or other popular item, you are sent a barrage of 3-4 spammy tweets. That was fine with me, at a certain point. I’d report all the fools as spammers and their tweets would be removed from my stream. But now, the war has changed, big time. With every day that goes by, the amount of spam messages go up, and now spam followers, making my rather crisp and clean following look like bots and free Apple product sites.
This type of spam is unbearable. With an email client like Gmail, you could easily ignore spam by creating tougher filters, reporting multiple messages as spam, and so forth. But with Twitter, where the world is real-time, you also find real-time spam. And a darn large amount of it, all the time.
So how could Twitter fix this problem, you ask? Well, for example, create a Twitter bot that is capable of seeking out spammy tweets, and immediately banning them. A bot like this may replicate in some way what the Google Bot does — that is, ranking real tweets, and drowning the spammers. By using this bot account, Twitter could also better analyze the amount of spam it receives, and combat it in more effective forms then what I just described.
We don’t want a Yahoo! Mail of social networking, do we? We all know where bad and spammy web applications go: the way of the floppy disk.