Take Note Of Twitter’s New Mention Spam Policy!

twitter birdTwitter Cracks Down
On @Name Noise!
(which creates implications…)


Anyone that’s been on twitter more than a handful of days is pretty well familiar with the @Name spam that clogs up our mentions.

Looks something like this…

“Hey @name @name2 @name3 @name4 @name5 have you heard about XYZ “

I don’t think any of us disagree that that is bad form, bad taste and a complete waste.


Stuff That Looks Like Spam

However, what sometimes does come under disagreement is whether the multimention versions of #FollowFriday are similarly spam.

One awesome community I participate in, was including all of it’s members in some pre-configured mention tweets to help community members out. In theory anyone receiving this mention is already a member of the community so certainly isn’t being solicited.

These tweets tend to in a similar “form” however to the spammy links above and there is little doubt that due to their similarity they are easy to flag. Also because members would tend to fire off 10+ of them back to back, the behavior pattern itself was flagable as spammy.


Is It Or Isn’t It?

While the last thing we want to be doing is creating noise, the tweets sent between members of that community are essentially benign as they are not soliciting the tagged members.

We have however been asking twitter to please put a crack down on the @Name/@Mention spam and a letter received, along with a banned notice, by one of our members indicates that is finally becoming a reality!

This account was suspended for sending multiple unsolicited messages using the @reply and/or mention feature. These features are intended to make communication between people on Twitter easier. Twitter monitors the use of these features to make sure they are used as intended and not for abuse. Using either feature to post messages to a bunch of users is considered an abuse of its use, which results in account suspension.

Alrighty then!

Honestly, I was never a fan of them anyways as I feel they dilute the quality of the original intended goals for #FollowFriday, which should read more like:

“Have you checked out @Name yet? Connect with them for #FF for hot news and tips on X, and Y and a little Z, a real cool person!”

But What About….?

So now the question that obviously has to be asked is whether the spam flag was REALLY raised only by multiple @Names or if it was raised by @Names + .

We remain uncertain about whether the “default” style #FF tweets produced by the Follow Friday Helper app, which I actually really like using.

Tweets such as this format, lack a link…. and thus I don’t know where they fall in the new restrictions.

Also unique about the Follow Friday Helper is that it points out people that have actually already mentioned you… so there is a trail of sorts that indicates that someone else initiated the dialog which makes it different than either of the two existing cases.

Fortunately however, that is only the “default” tweet type that application produces and its “recommendation” format is actually MUCH higher caliber and is something that I truly recommend.  You can read more about it over here.

I do not see ANY reason to believe that correctly done “recommendation” format tweets, which look very similar to the one above that I indicated is “best practice”, will ever be penalized. Follow Friday Helper still makes even this type of tweet a lot faster.

While this example was not created by Follow Friday Helper, it could have been, and is a PERFECT example of a great recommendation mention (with or without the #FF tags) that is certain to make the recipient smile and your own followers take notice! (And if you haven’t met Melody yet you really should!)

Can you see the HUGE difference between the impact the prior three images are going to have… compared to this?

I also still sometimes use it with #Gratitude to tag multiple people (along with some words of thanks) that have shared my content… but I am careful to keep the volume of that per day low.


Summing It Up

So, I think with this improved spam filtering from twitter we are finally going to see a reduction in mention spam noise.

However, because may blog posts still exist encouraging the use of inclusion of multiple names PLUS links… that this becomes a booby-trap for new people to twitter who may mimic what they see being done.

Fortunately in the case of our community member, he was able to successfully appeal the ban and get reinstated and bring it to our attention!

How are you using the power of Recommendations and #FF tagging to help those you appreciate? What impact will this have on your tagging behavior? Do you feel this will help or hinder your ability to engage on twitter?

Play safe, play smart, make a REAL honest effort… and KEEP IT REAL!

Kimberly Castleberry


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69 Comments on "Take Note Of Twitter’s New Mention Spam Policy!"

4 years 2 months ago

Nice post Kim.. I’m glad I changed my #FF policy a few weeks back haha

The post I do is easier and I believe it works to connect people better.

I will say that the thing with Twitter that I like is they are open to working with people.. if you get closed in most cases if you explain yourself they let you back in.. many other sites dont do that..

4 years 1 month ago


I agree that those type of tweets were in bad form, and very annoying! When you have 54,000 followers on Twitter, you stop paying attention to them, because they come streaming into your @mentions way too much! This is a nice move by Twitter to cancel out the noise from my @mention stream!


4 years 1 month ago

Andy.. I don’t care how many followers you have 54,000 or 154,000 you shouldn’t ignore your @mentions.,, since that is what is said to you specifically.

If you cant handle the @mentions you get them I would said dump your 54,000 followers and stuck to a number you can manage since the benis in Twitter are the relationships you make, not the number of followers you have :)

4 years 1 month ago

I can handle the followers! It is the annoying tweets that I do not like. I am very active with my @mentions, I just ignore the type of spam tweets that Kim is referring to here in her post. There is no way I could run my twitter account without using the @mentions section. On my busiest days I still make sure to check it to keep up with my followers posts.

4 years 1 month ago


4 years 2 months ago

So, does it mean follow friday mentions are going to be reduced? At least we need to change the format. Well it was Okey to penalize the multiple @mentions with a link but multiple mentions without links should go fine. Let’s see, but I will be more cautious now. Thanks Kim for the notice.

4 years 2 months ago

I would agree that there is too much spamming in twitter. I have been hit recently with spam about a new get rich quick scam which employees the above tatics. Glad to see them cleaning this up a bit.

4 years 2 months ago

Been seeing a lot of it in my timeline, I just do what I think it right. I report them for spam. haha

4 years 2 months ago

Cool, thanks for flagging Kim. I agree, even though the sentiment behind the multiple #FF tags is there, I personally do not really see the point of them … I mean who is ever really going to go out of their way to connect with a bunch of names?
…Contrast that to a really nicely formatted @mention telling people WHY they should follow … it’s in a completely different league. If I saw that and the person was in my niche, I would be straight over to check them out :)

As with all of these things, much is down to the sentiment in which we use these tools – is your intention to spread gratitude or to ‘look cool in front of a bunch of people’ or to try and pick up ‘points’ or ‘prizes’ for yourself. When you can answer that one honestly, you probably know on which side of the ‘law’ you sit :)

Thanks for raising.