Twitter apologises for making users follow Donald Trump

In case you hadn’t heard, let us catch you up – America has a new President, and that man is Donald Trump, yes, really.

While, for much of the world’s population, this might not be seen as a positive development, for more than half a million Twitter users, it’s really bad news.

That’s because Twitter accidentally forced hundreds of thousands of users into following the new president on the social media site.

The issue arose as Trump took charge of the country, and the @Potus Twitter handle. Although set up under the reign of Barack Obama, the @POTUS handle belongs to the residing president rather than a single individual.

With Trump taking office, Twitter opted to keep all existing followers of the @POTUS account while resetting the tweet count. During this process it also simultaneously added everyone who followed @POTUS to a new, achieved @POTUS44 thread.

Unfortunately, things didn’t quite go that smoothly.

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As Twitter co-founder and CEO, Jack Dorsey has since explained – via Twitter, of course – “People who followed @POTUS44 (Obama Admin) after 12pET were mistakenly set to also follow @POTUS (Trump Admin).”

He added: “Some people who unfollowed @POTUS in the past were mistakenly marked to now follow @POTUS.”

‘Some people’ doesn’t really do the problem justice. As the complaints of unwanted follow started to roll in, it emerged more than half a million users were added to the Trump follow list without desire.

“We believe this affected about 560,000 people,” Dorsey said. “This was a mistake, it wasn’t right, we own it, and we apologise. No excuses.

“We believe we’ve corrected all accounts to reflect your follow/unfollow intent. We’re sorry for the mistakes made here, and thank you all.”

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