Many conservatives on Twitter have accused the social media site of removing large swaths of their followers overnight for political reasons. Several voiced their frustrations on Twitter, and their collective conclusion was simple: Twitter was purposefully censoring conservative voices by removing their base.
However, all may not be as it appears.
According to the New York Daily News, Twitter has recently committed to combating Russian bots on the site. Over 1 million accounts suspected to be fake were removed in January, and it’s possible that the latest mass deletion of accounts is related to Twitter’s commitment to address bots as well as the practice of paid followers. Twitter has yet to comment on the latest wave of bans and deletions.
As the story spread on Twitter, people began to mock the fact that conservatives were calling the move censorship.
Last weekend, 13 Russian nationals and 3 entities were indicted by special counsel Robert Mueller last week for their alleged roles in meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
The Wall Street Journal compiled a list of various political Facebook advertisements that were linked to Russian operatives. The ads were diverse, targeting everyone from Muslims and Christians to civil rights activists and supporters of law enforcement communities.
But, still determined to make the issue about censorship, several Twitter users sought to regain their followers and enjoy a bit of vengeance along the way.