back to article President Trump sits down with Twitter boss for crunch talks: Why am I losing followers?

When the "leader of the free world" hauled Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey into the White House for a meeting yesterday, you would be forgiven for thinking they'd attempt to address the issues that have bedevilled social media of late – bots, disinformation, unsolicited DMs, Nazis... But then again, we are living in a timeline where …

  1. EricM

    According to Twitter's policy about promoting more "civil" discussions...

    they should probably treat this Twitter account as the mental health issue it is and simply close it..

    1. joeW

      Re: According to Twitter's policy about promoting more "civil" discussions...

      They should probably treat Twitter itself as the mental health issue it is and simply close it...

    2. Joe Harrison Silver badge

      Re: According to Twitter's policy about promoting more "civil" discussions...

      they should probably treat Twitter as the mental health issue it is and simply close it..

      FTFY

      1. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: According to Twitter's policy about promoting more "civil" discussions...

        they should probably treat Twitter as the mental health issue it is and simply close it..

        And perhaps FB also....

        1. Fungus Bob Silver badge

          Re: According to Twitter's policy about promoting more "civil" discussions...

          Perhaps?

    3. dbtx Bronze badge

      Re: According to Twitter's policy about promoting more "civil" discussions...

      they should probably treat the entire situation as a mental health hazard and Superfund it

  2. Jude Bradley

    The answer to that question is "Look in the mirror".

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Trump doesn't understand how Twitter bots work

      In order to look "real" they need to follow some accounts - and the best way to look real is to follow some of the accounts with the most followers, hence Trump, Kim K and others with a lot of followers always have a big bot following. When Twitter deletes the bots, those follower counts drop.

      Except you don't see Kim K whining all the time about how Twitter is biased against vacuous talent-free "celebrities" because she lost a few hundred thousand followers. Trump is the only vacuous talent-free "celebrity" who does that.

      1. BillG Silver badge
        Holmes

        Twitter bots

        ...others with a lot of followers always have a big bot following. When Twitter deletes the bots, those follower counts drop.

        Actually, if you ever respond to a tweet with an innocent comment and Twitter immediately suspends your account, then that account is a bot. I know one account that is always posting photos of landscapes and almost every time someone responds with praise that person is immediately suspended.

    2. Schultz
      Go

      Simple solution for Twitter

      They need to create more metrics to keep people like Trump (and other celebs) happy and twittering. Hide potentially embarrassing fleshbag follower number behind 'total followership' (non-discrimatory versus bots), 'total accumulated views', 'maximum impact number', 'allover twitter greatness factor',...

      Just hire a PR bot, they'll figure out how to keep that selected audience happy. For the rest of us, let me ask: Twitter? Really?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What a time to be alive.

    Imagine falling into a coma before the elections of 2000 and waking up to Trump as president. You'd be willing to pay to go back into that coma.

    1. Stress-tester-of-IT
      Trollface

      At this point I'm ready to pay to go into a coma now.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I'll get you a Canadian taking a break from clubbing then..

        :)

  4. Semtex451 Silver badge

    "directly proportionate to how cool and well-liked they are"

    What proportion of that almost 60 meeeeeeeelion* followers just want to know what madcap words he's tweeted next, as opposed to being in any sense the old notion of a 'follower'?

    * Mexican accent for emphasis only

    1. skeptical i
      Devil

      Re: "directly proportionate to how cool and well-liked they are"

      Next class assignment: create pie chart showing percentages of Trump's 60 million followers who are (a) true Trump believers/ voters, (b) train wreck gawkers, (c) reporters who need to keep scanning the social media-scape in case some real news actually happens, (d) bots, and (e) members of his and Putin's families.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 60 meeeeeeeelion

      It's a yuuuuge number, no need to put mexican accents on it. Sad!

  5. chivo243 Silver badge
    Big Brother

    I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

    Hi Uncle Donny,

    Remember, you, you of all people should know you get what you pay for! If you don't like Twatter, then fuckin quit using it... really simple, really really simple, just stop, get help, have your cheeky lil girl run an intervention something! You gotta help yourself before anyone else can help you...

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

      Interesting question from the other side.

      Twitter has no requirement to allow a customer, it isn't a common carrier or a media publisher.

      Any candidate that twitter decides to block is not going to win the next election

      1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

        Re: I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

        Given the pending legal precedent of disallowing Trump from blocking people on Twitter, I think there's a good chance Twitter would lose a lawsuit if Twitter did choose to block a candidate.

        1. MonkeyCee Silver badge

          Re: I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

          Twitter won't block a candidate unless they violate their policies. Which would take quite a lot, even given the current environment.

          Whether Trump can block people from his personal account (law is pretty clear that the POTUS account can't block people) depends on whether @theRealDonald is Trump's entirely personal statements, or if they are policy announcements. Seeing as the man himself can't keep the two separate, it's a bit tricky to argue that they are clearly separate.

          1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            Re: I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

            The reason Trump can't block followers is that he apparently makes policy on Twitter

            So having a law that group X isn't allowed to see b, but applies to them would be a bit naughty.

            The question - other than a bunch of black helicopters - is what stops a company (especially a privately held one) refusing a certain customer?

            Visa and Mastercard suddenly stopped processing donations to wikileaks when the pentagon papers leaked, presumably after some pressure from the Pentagon. What stops Visa/Mastercard refusing to process donations for a political party ? Or stops Facebook/Twitter/Google from no longer showing messages from that party?

            I am pretty sure I am allowed to pick and choose my customers, even on the basis of their politics. Given the election swinging power of silicon valley we might need some common carrier rules soon.

            1. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

              Re: I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

              "I am pretty sure I am allowed to pick and choose my customers"

              You'd think so, but if you are a mom and pop bakery, then apparently you have to bake cakes for anyone and everyone that asks.

              So if you can't refuse to serve gays, blacks and Irish, why would you be able to refuse to serve Democrats?

    2. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: I have a new, great, better plan to Make something better

      Actually the Trump method is to order services complain about them and not pay the bill. He has been famous for not paying contractors for decades. All twitter has to do is present a bill for Trump not to pay, Trump will think he has won and everything is sorted.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Empty desk....

    Empty mind, as a previous manager once told me

  7. Natalie Gritpants Jr

    Why am I following losers?

    FTFY your Grace.

  8. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

    it's common knowledge that the number of Twitter followers a person amasses is directly proportionate to how cool and well-liked they are

    I have zero followers on Twitter. I think that says all you need to know about me.

    1. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge
      Devil

      If it helps

      Lord Buckethead follows just about anyone...

    2. jake Silver badge

      I do not now have ...

      ... never have had, and never will have a twitter account, much less a follower.

      I guess that means something, if you squint at it hard enough. I wouldn't recommend wasting your time over it, though. Life's too short, find something important to do.

      1. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

        Re: I do not now have ...

        I use Twitter to follow select companies/organizations to keep up with what they're doing.

        e.g. All my local Parkruns.

        1. Roopee
          Thumb Up

          Re: I do not now have ...

          Upvote for publicising Parkruns :)

    3. Grooke

      Ha! Even I have a follower. She's a lonely Russian girl who'll join me where I live as soon as I send her a bit of money through Western Union.

      1. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

        Ruuski...

        Just asking for a friend... does she have a sister?

        1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

          Re: Ruuski...

          Just a sec ... OK, we've instantiated a sister for you.

    4. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      I have a couple of Twitter accounts. One I created to follow some relatives and friends (a practice I discontinued when Twitter went OAuth and broke integration with Thunderbird), and one I was asked to create by an employer.

      I've never used either, but they both accumulated followers. Not all bots, either. I think I have a similarly never-used Pinterest account too.

  9. lglethal Silver badge
    Trollface

    Still, it's common knowledge that the number of Twitter followers a person amasses is directly proportionate to how cool and well-liked they are...

    So I am sincerely* looking forward to the upcoming election of President Katy Perry in 2020...

    * No, not really.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You jest but they voted Reagan in.

      1. caffeine addict Silver badge

        Reagan is no longer the bar for this kind of joke...

        1. Semtex451 Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Even more sadly neither is George 'Dubya'

        2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          There used to be a joke about waking up from a coma and hearing "President Schwarzenegger" - now that seems like a lovely dream

          1. ShadowDragon8685

            He was a Republican governor of a wildly Democratic state and apparently managed to be reasonably popular and govern reasonably effectively.

            Both of which are statements that do not apply to the currently sitting president, so... Yeah, President Schwarzenegger would probably be doing a hell of a lot better right now.

        3. JohnFen Silver badge

          If not, then who is? Reagan is the only legit Hollywood star (even if b-list) that has been elected president.

          1. jake Silver badge

            Eh?

            I'm not all that certain I'd consider Nancy to have even made the b-list ...

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Reagan was not a narcissistic ignoramus....

        Even though I was not a fan of Reagan, he had some experience in governing before getting in to the White House -- he was head of the Screen Actors union and governor of California.

      3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Reagan had extensive political experience, and was a genuine policy wonk before cognitive decline set in.

        He's far from my favorite president, but at least had some actual, y'know, qualifications for the job.

  10. Inventor of the Marmite Laser Silver badge

    Its just like

    The film "Idiocracy" has come true.

    If you've never seen it you ought to find a copy (I did not say download a freebie) and watch it. Once upon a time it'd have been a (passable) comedy but right now it's just too bloody scary.

    1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge

      Re: Its just like

      Though I'd rather have President Camacho any day - at least he actually cared about his country.

    2. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Its just like

      "The film "Idiocracy" has come true."

      I wish. President Camacho was actually a good president and leader.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Its just like

        Any commentards happened to notice what they just did in Ukraine?

    3. Fungus Bob Silver badge

      Re: Its just like

      Maybe Trump just need more electrolytes...

      1. dbtx Bronze badge

        electoral acolytes?

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    that summer month was when Twitter embarked on a purge of bots, fake accounts and propagandists

    And privacy conscious people with the temerity to use Tor.

  12. codejunky Silver badge

    Ha

    "And, according to Reuters, the commander-in-chief was more concerned with the rate at which he was haemorrhaging Twitter followers."

    Someone should tell him that the democrats have been releasing tax returns and showing how little they contribute to charity or that they are in the top 1% they cry over. Basically the bad man is probably not as bad as his potential competition.

    1. Hollerithevo Silver badge

      Re: Ha

      Well, at least they released their tax returns. Given that these so shamefully show them as rich and stingy, Trump should now have no hesitation in releasing his. He can't be worse than them, surely?

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Ha

        @Hollerithevo

        "Well, at least they released their tax returns."

        There is no legal obligation for them to. It isnt something they have to do, and the dems made a rod for their own back by trying to make it a demand. Trump hasnt and no republican has reason to, but for the dems to appeal to the ravenous tax return crowd they stirred they need to. That doesnt make trump a good person but it makes an extra hurdle for a dem to seem a good person.

        Second to that is the 1% problem. All the railing against the 1% and accusing trump of helping the rich falls hard when the dems running are the 1% who pay even less tax than him in some cases. These very 'righteous' dems need slapping down if there is to be a dem opposition to trump. Hypocritical idiots eating themselves isnt a good starting point.

        "Trump should now have no hesitation in releasing his"

        Why should he? There is no obligation but he doesnt have to prove his tax returns to his base nor his supporters. His opponents cried in the street and on youtube for the worlds amusement but he can never win them over. The dems however have to win those people over, and by adding this requirement is highlighting them for what they attack.

        "He can't be worse than them, surely?"

        Possibly. I wouldnt be shocked and I doubt you would to. But this isnt about winning some moral argument its about trying to win the presidency. And if trump is so bad then making the requirements to take him on more difficult doesnt sound like a strategy but a car crash. So far non-charitable and 1%'s are his opponents. They are trying to appeal to a base against 1%'s who demand more money from the rich. Take that away and go back to how each would run the economy and life long politicians should easily win against trump.

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: Ha

          "the dems running are the 1% who pay even less tax than him in some cases."

          I assume you, codejunky, have access to both his and the dems in question's tax returns to make such a sweeping statement, and thus you can prove what you say. So please, do so. Post proof or retract.

          Or are you simply bullshitting hopefully?

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: Ha

            @jake

            "I assume you, codejunky, have access to both his and the dems in question's tax returns to make such a sweeping statement, and thus you can prove what you say. So please, do so. Post proof or retract."

            Ok I am now going off memory but Maddow(?) was going to release how bad Trumps tax returns were for a previous year and found nothing interesting. It also turned out he paid more than Sanders-

            https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-team-tax-returns-rachel-maddow-2017-3?r=US&IR=T

            As for the 1% comment- https://www.continentaltelegraph.com/politics/bernie-warren-kamala-theyre-all-part-of-the-1/

            of course Bernie seems to defend paying so little because he earned the money. Which oddly is how people generally make money-

            https://www.continentaltelegraph.com/politics/bernie-sanders-doesnt-really-believe-in-higher-tax-not-for-him-anyway/

            "Or are you simply bullshitting hopefully?"

            I can understand the hope there. As I said this is a problem for the dems who seem to be pushing a 'moral righteousness' campaign which only adds more hurdles for them to pass to appeal to their own base. And as I said it doesnt seem to add any hurdles for Trump to appeal to his base.

            I am not trying to defend trump here, I dont think he is a particularly good president. But the quality of his opposition is pretty bad. From the UK I was hoping Rand Paul would win (I know slim chance).

            1. Santa from Exeter
              FAIL

              Re: Ha

              @ codejunky

              Quoting the continentaltelegraph is hardly proof of much seeing as it's a splinter from the Adam Smith institute, which (although protesting its not political) is about as Capitalist as it gets.

              1. codejunky Silver badge

                Re: Ha

                @Santa from Exeter

                "Quoting the continentaltelegraph is hardly proof of much seeing as it's a splinter from the Adam Smith institute, which (although protesting its not political) is about as Capitalist as it gets."

                How is that wrong or a bad thing (the capitalist bit)? We can look globally at this phenomenon and see that capitalism is one of the predictors of becoming a successful country. So the idea that capitalist is to be taken as a bad thing is a really tough thing to sell. I do see some people trying to claim capitalism is bad but they are typically spoiled brats in a rich capitalist country.

                As to you disliking the Continental telegraph, tough shit. I laugh if someone puts a daily mail or guardian link to prove their point, but if it actually quotes (in this case sanders) and has actual links to verify then crying you dont like the source doesnt change the message.

    2. dbtx Bronze badge

      "probably not as bad as"

      you shouldn't hedge, at least that's what I think

  13. jake Silver badge

    Reality sets in.

    Trump, you're losing followers because even die-hard Republicans are sick and tired of your bullshit. It's really that simple.

    1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: Reality sets in.

      I am not so sure about that. I just checked a Google image search for Trump and five other idiots make the top ten. For some reason he does not even appear until fourth place. I blame the Democrats. When Republicans had a majority they worked hard to maintain his position. The Democrats just aren't making the same effort.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Reality sets in.

        He is losing followers because 250K of them were bots.

        I would be tempted to follow the Trump if I was testing a bot and needed a constant supply of random messages.

    2. liac

      Re: Reality sets in.

      ....tell him the lost followers are the South Americans he has turned back at the border.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There are only two relevant issues here..

    1 - Trump cannot plausibly claim that Twitter treats him worse than others, given that Twitter would have closed any other account going that far off their Terms. Just to name a simple one: hate speech.

    2 - IMHO, Trump et al are merely upset with the reduced numbers because it means Twitter has found out the truth about their followers: they're mostly fake. Maybe that's why he doesn't want his finance examined, all that money going to a fakes farm must be quite visible..

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: There are only two relevant issues here..

      "because it means Twitter has found out the truth about their followers"

      I think it's simpler than that. Trump isn't exactly a deep pool, and he's consistent on at least one point: if he thinks something is good for him personally, it's the best thing ever. If he thinks it isn't, then it's evil fake news.

      1. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

        Re: There are only two relevant issues here..

        You're right. He IS very binary..

  15. jake Silver badge

    Apropos, separate comment.

    Twanting ... Twat ranting. Fits better.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Apropos, separate comment.

      Or just being a twat.

    2. lardheppus
      Coat

      Re: Apropos, separate comment.

      Twanting by a twatwaffle.

  16. bombastic bob Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Boo

    Trump hate, much?

    1. jake Silver badge

      Re: Boo

      That's not hate, mate. That's pity and sorrow.

      (C'mon, bob, you're far too smart to continue blindly backing Trump. You MUST be a troll, nothing else explains the caricature that you've drawn. When are you going to own up to it?)

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Boo

        "blindly backing Trump" ? not at all. In fact, I wholeheartedly endorse what he's up to, and I'd say NOT FAR ENOUGH, in many cases!

        It's what I'd be doing if I were President, except I'd also round up the illegals and mass deport them. Those who "failed to appear" after tying up our court systems with asylum requests would get maximized contempt of court jail time, followed by deportation.

        And I'd insist on a FLAT TAX RATE, same rate for everyone regardless of how much you earn, or the nature of those earnings. With NO deductions! Because, THAT is FAIR!

        However, Trump had a hard enough time getting Republicans to go along with "doing the right thing", because there are too many like (the late) John McCain or (the clueless?) Mitt Romney. So yeah something about getting enough votes in Con-Grab for legislation to pass is a part of the bag o' schtuff Trump has to deal with...

        So there ya have it - no "blindly following" - I'm just happy someone's there to do at least a PART of what I want done!

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: Boo

          Sorry, bob. I don't believe you on this subject. I think you are trolling.

          1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

            Re: Boo

            Unfortunately, he is one of the many fuckwits who've bought into "neo-Con" populist agenda that is selectively blind to the laws and consitution that, while flawed (and which country's aren't?), have provided such remarkable stability.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Boo

          "And I'd insist on a FLAT TAX RATE, same rate for everyone regardless of how much you earn, or the nature of those earnings. With NO deductions! Because, THAT is FAIR!"

          You've really not though that one through at all, have you. That is about the most unfair tax system you could possibly come up with. A little surprising considering that unfair taxation was one of the cornerstones of the terrorist uprising in the colonies.

  17. Unep Eurobats
    Paris Hilton

    E-peen

    Short for e-penis, meaning one's sense of online self-worth. (You're welcome.)

    Like all right-thinking people, I measure mine in El Reg upvotes.

    |

    |

    |

    V

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: E-peen

      You know what a negative one is, right?

      :)

    2. Hollerithevo Silver badge

      Re: E-peen

      Hmmm. As a female, I don't measure my self-worth in any spelling of penis, and doubt I ever will. But you chaps are welcome to.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: E-peen

        "As a female, I don't measure my self-worth in any spelling of penis"

        Neither do most men. Little boys, on the other hand ...

    3. dbtx Bronze badge

      the game of obfuscating the game of incremental acquisition of oft-overrated indicators of rating

      Rule number zero is always start counting at zero.

      Explaining rules one and two is only done in violation of rules one and two.

    4. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: E-peen

      "I measure mine in El Reg upvotes."

      with all of the poo-slinging "howler monkeys" and "fan club" down-voting, it's an unreliable measuring stick.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: E-peen

        .. yet it's the only one that is any fun :)

  18. Ian Emery Silver badge

    Sad but true

    The bots he has lost, even with their posts consisting of random insults thrown together into incoherent sentences - STILL come across as more intelligent than the posts by his fleshy followers.

    I got a bot response after pointing out the lack of non-white people in the weekends WH Easter egg roll (I counted a total of 6, out of hundreds)

    Sorry if the forum swear filter messes with this but "Low life troll trash race wh0re POS !"

    Whereas one of his REAL followers complained that "all the jobs Obama created were only for people who went to college - so most Americans couldnt get one of them" .......................

  19. Someone Else Silver badge

    204,000 "followers"?!?

    Indeed, the newswire's source, "who was briefed on the meeting that included Twitter's general counsel and public policy chief", claimed the prez "spent a significant time" questioning Dorsey about where 204,000 of his followers had disappeared in July 2018.

    Well, it's clear why that would be important to him, if he expects Gucifer 2.2020 to steal another election for him.

  20. Fred Dibnah

    For those who use Twitter (guilty but I only read it for the articles) there’s the Unfollow Trump account, which reposts the orange one’s tweets so you can follow without actually following.

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Why would you need Twitter at all to see what he's posting? I never login to Twitter and I hear about at least half of them anyway.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Agreed. Even with the rapid decline of the credible news media, I see far more of Trump's inane rambling than I need to. Since most executive policy is being made and executed by his staff and cronies, and they feel free to ignore his direction, it's all pretty irrelevant. Thus far into his presidency most of Trump's direct impact has been in appointing and firing people to various offices. While that's important, his adolescent attempts at self-expression aren't much help in forecasting it.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I only read it for the articles

      I only read Playboy for the pictures...

  21. Palpy

    My personal difficulty with Mr. Trump's statements --

    -- is that so many of them are lies. Puffery and nonsense, unsubstantiated and unverifiable at best, but more often easily checked and factually incorrect.

    When he tweets stuff like "Wind turbines cause cancer" and "[Polar] ice caps are at a record level" and "“Chrysler is moving a major plant from Mexico to Michigan" -- well, what's the point in paying attention to anything he says? Chrysler is not shutting the plant in Saltillo, Mexico and wind turbines don't cause cancer. Even statements of his policy, like shutting down the government until he gets money for his wall, or closing the Mexican border completely, even these usually end in flip-flops.

    All that said, I don't do Twitter or Facebook or Reddit. Hell, I hardly find time to check The Register much anymore. Imagine me a caveman watching the spring leaves blow in the wind.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: My personal difficulty with Mr. Trump's statements --

      The sad thing is that his outbursts are both indicative of his narcissism and part of a rhetorical strategy. By all accounts Trump is not stupid but has a very short attention span and is extremely sensitive to criticism, he also thinks the office of the president is closer to what it was intended to be (a better king) than the actual constitution permits.

      But the launching of unsubstantiated claims has been demonstrated to be effective, because it sows doubt even if the claims can be easily demonstrated to be false. What is important for many of his supporters is that he appears to be standing up to the "elite", who they feel keep telling them how to live. This makes him "one of us" even though the poor little golfing rich-kid patently isn't. America has a long and ugly history of anti-intellectualism.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: My personal difficulty with Mr. Trump's statements --

        By all accounts Trump is not stupid

        Have a citation for that? Like, as in a reliable source?

        Nothing in Trump's history suggests to me that he possesses more than a sort of unremarkable cunning. He has a small collection of behaviors which he repeats with little variation. They have worked well for him because he started from a position of advantage; because he's a useful idiot for people like the Mercers who aren't interested in the stage lights; and because his type of bullying has always been popular.1

        It's the same thing we've seen with any number of other strong-man rulers around the world in the modern era. Some are legitimately intellectual (Mao, for example), whatever their moral failings, but most are just at the far end of the schoolyard-bully success curve.

        1Particularly when it's built on social divisiveness, as Trump's is. The statistics show quite clearly that Trump's presidency is very much a racialized movement, and all the talk of it being about class is, frankly, bullshit.

    2. Someone Else Silver badge

      @Palpy -- Re: My personal difficulty with Mr. Trump's statements --

      Even statements of his policy, like shutting down the government until he gets money for his wall, or closing the Mexican border completely, even these usually end in flip-flops.

      ...with the emphasis on the last syllable.

    3. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

      Re: My personal difficulty with Mr. Trump's statements --

      Who said:

      "“If people want to really blow up one figure here or one word there, I would argue that they’re missing the forest for the trees,” she said. “There's a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right.”"

      That's right, the vacuous AOC. Perhaps Trump should recycle her exact words. So maybe Chrysler isn't closing a factory in Mexico, but is it opening a plant in Michigan?

      Possibly neither:

      "Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said on Thursday that it planned to spend $1 billion to move production of heavy-duty pickup trucks from Mexico to a factory in Michigan, where it will add 2,500 new jobs as a result." https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/11/business/fiat-chrysler-jobs.html

    4. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: My personal difficulty with Mr. Trump's statements --

      wind turbines don't cause cancer

      Oh yeah? How many have you eaten then, Mr Certainty?

  22. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Hellbanning

    A very useful technique for dealing with vandals/idiots/trolls on forums is for them to see their messages but for them to be invisible to everyone else.

    That way the idiot thinks they have an audience but nobody has to suffer from it.

    Could Twitter arrange for Trumps account to just show 10% more followers than the real top ?

    They could also arrange for only him to see his Tweets

    1. southen bastard

      Re: Hellbanning

      mERCIA ONLY GOT TRUMP COS THEY DESERVED IT,

      bloody caps lock, dont need to shoute it every one outside murckia knows it

      1. Fungus Bob Silver badge

        Re: Hellbanning

        No, Mercia didn't deserve Trump. Wessex, maybe, but not Mercia...

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: Hellbanning

          Not Wessex. Essex. The one in New Jersey.

      2. sisk Silver badge

        Re: Hellbanning

        Hey now, I'll admit this nation has done some pretty crappy things, but NO ONE deserves Trump. I mean it's not like we voted for him (no, really, he lost the popular vote by a pretty big margin, but the electoral college is so screwed up that he won anyway).

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: Hellbanning

          but the electoral college is so screwed up…

          …to make sure landowners never get outvoted.

    2. Someone Else Silver badge

      Re: Hellbanning

      They could also arrange for only him to see his Tweets

      No, No, a thousand times No! He needs to only see the tweets of those who tell him, in so many words, that he's full of shit and to bugger off.

      One possible use of AI by Twatter

  23. sisk Silver badge

    It probably also never occurred to him that a lot of people might choose to stop following someone who never tweets anything but hate filled rants and political rhetoric.

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Alas, I don't think the statistics support that conclusion. There's little or no reliable evidence to suggest that Trump is losing support from his "base".

      This shouldn't come as a surprise. He was elected based on a set of fantasies; there's no reason why reality should disturb that.

      It's not like the rest of the electorate has been terribly good at revising its opinion of its choices either. Carter didn't get a second term, but 1) the memory of Nixon was still relatively fresh, so the electorate was somewhat more inclined to be critical; 2) he went through a series off really bruising problems, including high inflation, the energy crisis, and the Iranian hostage crisis; and 3) he really didn't want to play political games.

      With most presidents, most supporters among the actually-make-it-to-the-poles voters just dig in their heels. There's the Sunk Costs fallacy at work, and the well-documented psychological tendency to become more certain of your position when confronted with opposing evidence.

      This will be particularly true with a divisive president who encourages conflict in the electorate, because that raises the perceived personal cost of "switching sides".

  24. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge
    Pint

    Dear Donald,

    We are not laughing with you but laughing at you.

    Best Regards/Rest of the World

  25. Suricou Raven

    This conspiracy theory has been going for a long time on right-wing media.

    It typically involves pointing to some right-wing political figure of note, like a popular blogger, who has just been banned from some social media platform. "See, it's a conspiracy! Time after time right-wing activists are being censored and silenced by the liberal media and technology firms!"

    On closer investigation, the ban is found to be either an error that is swiftly corrected, or in response to the banned party posting something in clear violation of the terms of service, like a call to rise up and fight the gay oppressors, to execute illegal immigrants as enemy agents without trial.

    1. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

      Re: This conspiracy theory has been going for a long time on right-wing media.

      "On closer investigation, the ban is found to be either an error that is swiftly corrected"

      Yes, like employers used to "lose" black applicants' CVs in the 50s...

      https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/11/17225120/mark-zuckerberg-facebook-congress-cruz-blackburn-diamond-silk

      "or in response to the banned party posting something in clear violation of the terms of service, like a call to rise up and fight the gay oppressors, to execute illegal immigrants as enemy agents without trial."

      You're saying that's what Sargon of Akkad did?

  26. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

    "Just in case there was any question whether Twitter is politically biased, public policy director Carlos Monje told the US Senate earlier this month that the platform "does not use political viewpoints, perspectives or party affiliation to make any decisions, whether related to automatically ranking content on our service or how we develop or enforce our rules"."

    Oh, that's alright then.

    Hahahahahahaha.

    I've got only one thing to say to you: learn to code.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why?

    Trump is a numpty and people are starting to realise that he might well be suffering from demetia.

    Lord help us if by some chance he is re-elected for another 4 years.

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