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Behind The Mystery Of Spam Tweets Clogging Syrian Protesters’ Streams


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Syrian democracy activists on Twitter have found themselves threatened and spammed by mystery accounts. Now one prominent opposition figure claims the Syrian government may be involved.

Protests in Syria are getting intense. So has social media use by those seeking the latest news. But a more sinister brand of Twitter user has also taken to posting furiously under the same topic protesters have used.

A well-organized campaign with possible traces to the Syrian government has been drowning the #syria hashtag in spam–forcing Twitter to intervene and to block the spam accounts from appearing in searches. Shortly thereafter, at least one of accounts began threatening a well-known Syrian free speech activist.

The story broke when Anas Qteish, a Syrian expatriate “blogger, translator [and] tech enthusiast” based in the United States, noted at the GlobalVoices site that a number ofTwitter spam accounts had popped up after the beginning of the Syrian protests. The accounts Qteish mentioned posted primarily in Arabic. These spam accounts, with names such as @thelovelysyria@syriabeauty@syleague@karamahclub@syhumor@dnnnewsand @mbking13 all regularly posted automated tweets full of nonsense unrelated to happenings in Syria with the #syria hashtag appended. One account, for example only posted old sports scores.

BY NEAL UNGERLEIDER

Wed Apr 20, 2011

Read our previous article about this topic :

Spam Bots Flooding Twitter to Drown Info About #Syria Protests please report all listed to stop the spam

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