Mitt Romney Sees Sudden Unexplained Spike in Twitter Followers
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's Twitter account saw two sudden and massive spikes in new followers over the weekend.
The spikes were first noticed by Zach Green of 140elect.com, a blog which monitors Twitter trends relating to the 2012 presidential election.
According to Green's data, Romney "was gaining around 3000-4000 new followers per day for the past month," then his account suddenly got 23,926 new followers on Friday, 93,054 on Saturday and 25,432 on Sunday.
Green's analysis indicates that Romney hasn't seen a noticeable uptick in other metrics, such as mentions, which would suggest Romney was getting these followers organically.
Green suggested that somebody else may have bought the new followers for Romney to embarrass the campaign.
Zac Moffatt, the Romney campaign's digital director, has denied buying Twitter followers. Moffatt has in the past stressed that his strategy revolves around targeted engagement and not simply accumulating massive numbers of new followers. Buying fake followers doesn't mesh well with that approach (plus, follower totals mean very little for politicians if real voters aren't interacting with the message being sent).