Twitter has been in the spotlight due to the alleged use of the network by Russian bots to influence the 2016 US Presidential election.

Facing heavy scrutiny from the US Congress, Twitter recently announced a number of significant rule and policy changes designed to counteract some common uses and abuses of the Twitter system. Twitter announced policy changes on February 21, 2018 with rules going into effect 30 days later on March 23, 2018.

These policy changes are aimed at reducing the influence of spam across Twitter by limiting the ability of multiple twitter accounts to coordinate the spread and amplification of certain Tweets.

Unfortunately, Twitter’s policy changes impact all Twitter users – not just the bad actors. So whether you are a Russian bot farm operating in St. Petersburg or an upstanding small business trying to market on social media, you are now subject to Twitter’s new rules.

New Twitter Rules

This means many common and effective tweeting practices relied on by legitimate Twitter users are no longer allowed.

For instance, if you manage more than one twitter account – you can no longer post the same or similar original content to those accounts. This limitation applies regardless of whether the Tweets are published to Twitter at the same time, or are scheduled/queued for future publication.

If you’re used to simultaneously publishing or scheduling tweets across multiple twitter accounts, you’ll no longer be able to do this. Twitter removed this option from TweetDeck and all apps must follow by March 23.

Per Twitter: “One of the most common spam violations we see is the use of multiple accounts and the Twitter developer platform to attempt to artificially amplify or inflate the prominence of certain Tweets.”

Additionally, Twitter is now stepping up enforcement of other policies related to duplicate content. Twitter rules prohibit duplicate updates on a single account. This rule was previously only loosely enforced by Twitter. For instance, Twitter previously blocked identical posts to the same account only if the posts were attempted within the same 12 hour period. Twitter is now poised to enforce this policy much more aggressively by restricting all duplicate content posting, even if it the posts are made even days or weeks apart.

If you are like many major brands, and recycle the same tweet more than once on a single Twitter account – you’re now in danger of suspension or termination from Twitter.

What do you think?

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the Twitter policy changes. Will these new rules result in a better Twitter experience? Will these policy changes keep unsavory actors from gaming Twitter? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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