eponymousarchon: (Angled)
[personal profile] eponymousarchon
That's truly remarkable!

After being followed twice on twitter by scary new-age users (See posts here and here) promoting their dubious wares, I decided to run a small experiment today. At least one of the followings seemed to be triggered by references to fairly obscure new-age pseudoscience in my twitter, which lead me to suspect that such terms were being searched for in the public timeline. Time for a test!

Today at around 11am, I fired-off a short tweet:

Note that this was nice and straightforward. No attempt to suggest I was pro-homeopathy at all and hideously out-of-context against my tweets before and after. If a human was actually reading my personal timeline to see if I really was interested in homeopathy, there wasn't much of a suggestion that I was pro - or even interested in - that subject.

A bot however wouldn't be likely to tell the difference -- or care.

Line cast, I sat and waited. Would I get a nibble?

At 11:30 - (bing!) I have new mail - could it be? Yes!

That's around 30 minutes from cast to bite
- not too shabby!

This bunch don't seem to be obviously selling anything or running a scam, so I'm not about to report them as spammers, but still - 30 minutes! That has to be a 'bot scanning the public timeline.

(For reference, the tweets that attracted one of my previous followers were actually completely negative about the subject - discussion about debunking 'Energy Medicine' and specifically the 'e-lybra' version 8 and 9 'bio-resonance system'. I never did work out what triggered the first. )


Date: 2009-06-18 02:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bluedevi.livejournal.com
Twitter reminds me of the movie Candyman, where if you say the baddie's name five times he appears. Except it's five times as sensitive. :)

Date: 2009-06-18 08:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] philipstorry.livejournal.com
35 minutes ago, I tweeted: "Minutes into my exercise, and there's the sweat as forecasted. A colder evening would be nice right now."

20 minutes ago, I got an email: "Yoga Bear is now following you on Twitter!"


Date: 2009-06-19 06:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] thecesspit.livejournal.com
I posted about "Leeds United" the song, and had a Leeds United FC twitterer following me in a few minutes...

Date: 2009-06-20 12:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ukcougar.livejournal.com
I'm loving "WooBots", kudos.


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