Could this be a rising problem in the future? Perhaps!
I get notified when people start following me on twitter. Often it’s pretty cool to see who you’re connecting with in this wide world. Sometimes I’ll follow them back, but sometimes I figure I’ll just tail them from their following link to me, if they’re following me for long enough.
Have I internetted you out yet? Go take a rest. I will wait.
Ready? OK, so one of the things that has been happening is “new media” advertisers, that is to say, people who’ve heard of the internet, and are terrified, will occasionally “follow” me. This is only because they’re trying to bait me into following them back. I usually leave them alone. I smile and shake my head sometimes, saying under my breath "Oh new media advertisers, will you never learn?". More recently, however, I’ve had a different kind of solicitation.
Some woman started following me on Twitter. Curious, I clicked through to see what she’d been tweeting. She’d only had a single post, but was already following a healthy number of people. “Well” I thought, “She's probably brand new to this twitterverse. Perhaps I should leave a friendly and welcoming reply”. I started to read her tweet:
“Hmm, this is a fairly personal entry”, I thought. Perhaps her content wasn’t all too interesting, but her writing may make up for that! She already started with a good hook. What about her boyfriend? Did he buy her a cake? set up her twitter account? Who knew? I read on:
My boyfriend treats me like shit
Oh how terrible for her. I, however, was in TMI territory right here. This lady was certainly not someone I would be following! However, I was already half-way through that sentence, so I read on. What I found, to my horror, was that this was just link-bait to a porn site. Well, I didn’t click through, so it may not have been. I mean, maybe there’s some poor woman out there with a huge blog entry about how no-body loves her, but I seriously doubt it.
This sort of trash gets picked up all the time. Often by the time I get to the user who added me, the account is already disabled. However, I’m wondering if, as Twitter gets more popular, this sort of thing is going to pervade the system, making it more like ICQ is now. I hope not, I’m kind of enjoying the twittering, but I fear so...