Normally, when a politician gets a noticeable boost in his or her social media presence, it's seen as a good thing.
But, hey, this is the 2012 presidential election -- so, nothing's normal.
Last week, Mitt Romney's official campaign Twitter account, @MittRomney, gained more than 100,000 followers. Now, for the most part, the Romney campaign has been slowly working to catch up to President Obama's massive domination of Twitter. They've been gaining between 3,000 and 4,000 followers a day for the last month, so an increase of this size is pretty noticeable and have many led quite a few people to suspect that something is afoot.
The theory goes that the campaign is buying Twitter followers and that the media coverage of "The Dark Knight Rises" shooting is providing a distraction to keep most people from noticing. Proponents of the idea point to the fact that many of the new followers don't seem to use proper English and barely have any followers (all signs of fake accounts). Meanwhile, a campaign spokesperson has said they're waiting for an explanation from Twitter.
We're not sure just what the conspiracy theorists believe is the campaign's motivation for "buying" people to follow them on Twitter. If these are shell accounts -- with no actual people behind them -- what's the benefit? A bigger number of "followers" to make the account seem more popular? That seems kind of lame.
And, with Obama leading by more than 16 million more followers, the number is pretty insignificant.
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