Twitter shuts down fake 'African-American' accounts designed to hurt Democrats

Twitter shuts down fake 'African-American' accounts designed to hurt Democrats
Wausau, Wi, USA, March 22, 2020, 3M N95 1860 mask with cash money and the words vote in front of the American flag, horizontal Shutterstock/ Michael Tatman
election, voting

The far right is well aware of the fact that if African-Americans vote in big numbers in the 2020 presidential election, it could be very helpful to Democratic nominee Joe Biden. As a result, troll accounts on social media will try every dirty trick imaginable to discourage African-Americans from voting. And Twitter, according to NBC News, is taking action against some fake accounts that are pretending to be from African-Americans.


NBC News’ Ben Collins reports that Twitter “has taken action to stop a spam operation that pushed messages from fake accounts about black people abandoning the Democratic Party.” Twitter, according to a spokesperson, has terminated two fake accounts as well as the account of a San Diego man who spammed its platform.

“The fake accounts were purported to be run by black people whose viral tweets received tens of thousands of shares in the past month,” Collins reports. “One of the accounts, @WentDemToRep, logged over 11,000 retweets on a single tweet that claimed that the user was a lifelong Democrat who was pushed to vote Republican by the Black Lives Matter movement. The tweet was posted shortly after the account was created Tuesday.”

According to Collins, “The WentDemToRep account quickly tagged two other accounts in a reply, @PeterGammo and @KRon619, which were suspended at the same time Tuesday. The Twitter spokesperson said all three accounts were suspended for spam and ‘specifically, artificially manipulative behavior.’”

But the fact that the troll posts were deceptive and misleading doesn’t mean that they didn’t go viral. Collins notes that the fake accounts “had five separate posts with at least 10,000 retweets.”

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

Close
alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.