Last week Zach Green of 140Elect, noticed some strange goings-on with Mitt Romney’s Twitter account (@MittRomney). Romney’s account, which had been averaging around 2,000 to 5,000 new followers a day, gained 141,000 followers in two days. […]
We developed a simple methodology for testing whether a set of followers is likely to be the product of natural user following behavior or bot networks. This test revealed a significant difference between the distribution of followers among the accounts in Mitt Romney’s recent spike and that of similar users in our comparison. It strongly indicates that non-organic processes induced Romney’s recent surge in followers. We did not find a similar pattern in Barack Obama’s recent followers.