The official presidential Twitter account @POTUS, which Barack Obama created and built, suddenly grew by nearly a million followers in the hours after Donald Trump took over the White House. But there are indications it was an automatic boost engineered by Twitter, and not a rush to read presidential tweets.
A CNN story posted Saturday titled "Twitter investigating complaints about @POTUS account transfer" reports the social platform company is "looking into complaints from angry users who say they were unwittingly added as followers of the @POTUS account after President Donald Trump's team took it over on Friday."
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey responded to one tweeted complaint saying the company was "investigating."
I have never followed the POTUS account. Twitter took my account and followed it. There is nefarious shit happening.-- Ginny McQueen (@GinnyMcQueen) January 21, 2017
Comedian Margaret Cho, who is not a Trump fan, wasn't pleased (two understatements) to find she was now a Trump follower on Twitter.
Just saw @twitter had me following Trump and new POTUS. What's uo with that @jack? I didnt ask for it and Im not the only one. @support-- Margaret Cho (@margaretcho) January 21, 2017
The @POTUS account had 13.7 million followers in the last hour of Obama's presidency, but rose to 14.4 million by Friday evening. It had lost 200,000 by Saturday morning, settling at 14.2 million.
A series of unofficial Twitter polls conducted by the account @UnFollowPOTUS in the days ahead of the transition suggested many Obama supporters would dump @POTUS when Trump got the password. It also indicated the account would gain a large number of Trump supporters who didn't follow when Obama was the Tweeter-in-Chief.
Poll: Report says Twitter automatically added @POTUS followers without you knowing. Did it happen to you?#UnFollowPOTUS #TrumpPresident-- UnFollow POTUS 45 (@UnfollowPOTUS) January 21, 2017