Like death and taxes, spam will always find a way.
And so it seems for Twitter whose problem with spam has grown in line with its popularity. On what is essentially an open communications platform, it is inevitable that the worst as well as the best facets of communication would find their place.
These take several forms, including:
1. Simple posting of spam links
2. Hacking of Twitter accounts to post said links
3. Fake profiles with official sounding names (e.g. Walmart offers) or even blatantly suggestive ones
4. Mass follows in the hope that others will reciprocate. Return to 1.
The last deserves its own paragraph for its sheer cheek. You receive a follow from a seemingly random and very attractive stranger; that profile includes a few pictures of demonstrate said attractiveness; the profile states oh so innocently how that person is in a new town and looking for friends; they invite you to chat via what looks like a standard Yahoo (or other) embedded chat client; you enter your credentials; your password is stolen. Nice (and no, this is not from personal experience).
There are of course many other methods, but this post is not meant to be a spammers checklist.
You can block profiles and followers, although as the requests mount up it becomes an annoyance, and there’s even Twitter’s own spam profile to help you along and report spammers. Even then, the individual Tweets would still appear in the increasingly popular search results and, as with email spam, automation will add to the increasing unwelcome noise.
Twitter may or not be a new form of communication, but one constant annoyance of internet communication is not going away any time soon – Twitter spam is here to stay.