Research: 9 to 15 percent of monthly active Twitter accounts are bots




9 to 15 percent of monthly active accounts on Twitter are controlled by possible collision. Which enable researchers from the University of South California. That equates to roughly 30 to 48 million accounts.

The researchers have their own model drawn up to map the behavior of bots. This will include looking at tracking behavior, content of tweets and timing of activity. Moreover, the model is also “trained” by the researchers is to manually run through a collection of Twitter users and all accounts has the right stamp. All in all, the researchers say that the number of 9 to 15 percent is pretty reliable.

The figures are higher than those of Twitter itself, which at the publication of the annual figures proposed in 2016 that less than 5 percent of monthly active accounts “are false or used for spam purposes. Although the numbers of Twitter and researchers diverge must be said that under the description ‘bots’ the researchers are bona fide applications such as live Tweeting from news feeds. That kind accounts not covered by the definition which uses Twitter here himself.

In addition, however, Twitter also speaks of 8.5% of monthly active accounts through third party applications without any noticeable human interaction obtain updates from Twitter feeds. That description fits well with the bone where researchers look at, but still is lower than the lowest estimate of the University.

The researchers, ultimately, to the maximum of their estimation, 15 percent, perhaps still too low. In the course of the investigation it was soon clear that there are degrees of complexity under the Twitter Bots. Where simpler bots keep following certain users, there are also more ‘human-like’ bots that were more difficult to detect. The researchers certainly do not exclude that there are bots that slip through the cracks of their model. They stress also the importance of detecting these bots as deception and detection in this area “is endless arms race ‘one. The importance of this case to strengthen them further stress that bots are now used for the dissemination of propaganda, rumors, conspiracy theories, manipulating the stock market and more.


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