1

I have a Twitter account that follows roughly a hundred users. For some time now it will happen that the number of people I follow is displayed as zero. Usually, it will revert back to the true number after some time. This only affects one of my accounts (where I post political opinions). What's behind this? Is this some sort of 'shadow ban' I'm being subjected to?

Edit:

  • Another thing I've noticed is that before this started happening, I was gaining followers on average, while now I haven't gained any followers but only slowly bleed them.
  • I can confirm that this issue is independent of the mode of access: whenever it occurs, it occurs whether I access Twitter via the Web interface or the Twitter app.

migrated from superuser.com Aug 26 '17 at 12:22

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2

It seems more likely to be a bug of some sort. Regarding bans specifically, the purpose of shadowbans are to allow the user to continue using the account believing nothing is different. If it were the case that what you describe was part of the ban process, it would be extremely noticeable and defeat that purpose.

Anecdotally, using a mobile device, I have frequently run across accounts that say they have all 0's (following, followers, tweets, etc.). Waiting a few moments for internet and server lag and then refreshing almost always fixes this.

Likewise, I have never seen evidence of any true "account limiting" that wasn't clearly marked as such. That said, one thing that often happens if you are temporarily limited is your tweets become unavailable. There are a number of online Shadowban Checkers. You can try this one if you're worried.

Notes

I've made an assumption you are using an official Twitter interface but if you use 3rd parties (i.e. Tumblr, browser extensions, management and tracking sites, etc.), these use the Twitter API and are much more prone to errors (via bad coding or rate-limiting).

One other possibility is you have over a following count over 5000. It would still likely be a bug to see a 0, but the number of people you can follow beyond 5000 is set by an undisclosed following/follower ratio.

  • Well, if it is a bug then it's one that only affects one of my accounts for some reason; whenever this "bug" appears, it only shows up with this one account, all other accounts always have correct number of followed people. – BlenderBender Aug 26 '17 at 14:47
  • Do you access all of your Twitter accounts through the same device/app/interface? – freginold Aug 31 '17 at 12:11
  • Yes, I do. I use the iOS app from Twitter. – BlenderBender Aug 31 '17 at 14:48
  • 1
    Since you're only seeing this in the iOS app, this might be a better question for Ask Different. Questions here should be primarily be about the web interface. Also, that's a very important piece of information that should be in your question. – ale Sep 1 '17 at 13:00
  • I didn't say that I only see this in the iOS app. – BlenderBender Sep 1 '17 at 18:01

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