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Elon Musk goes hard on bots as Several X accounts to be suspended

The billionaire owner of X, Elon Musk, has said that a cleanup to rid the social media platform of bot accounts and trolls has begun and will lead to the suspension of several accounts.

In addition, Musk said the company would not only suspend any account found to be bots but would also trace the owners and prosecute them.

This action came on the heels of complaints by users and advertisers that the social media platform is populated by bots, suggesting that the real human accounts are insignificant.

For context, bots are non-human users on X that do not need any supervision to perform actions such as liking posts of other users, reposting (formerly retweeting) tweets, following and unfollowing other accounts, and even sending direct messages.

What Elon Musk is saying

Announcing the actions on Thursday via a post on his twitter handle, Musk said:

“System purge of bots & trolls underway. Please reply to me or @Xeng. if legitimate accounts are suspended.
“X Corp will be tracing the people responsible and bringing the full force of the law to bear upon them.”

Musk who was a strong critic of Twitter for allowing bots and even accused the previous owners of patching up their numbers with bots before the acquisition of the company in 2022, has been celebrating the increasing number of users on X. However, increasing complaints about the activities of bots on the platform have pushed him to take action which may significantly reduce the numbers being celebrated.

Bots on X

Recent study by a researcher at the Queensland University of Technology, Dr. Timothy Graham, established that bot activity on the platform formerly known as Twitter is worse than ever. This was despite X’s owner, Elon Musk, claiming a crackdown on bots as one of his key reasons for buying the company.

“It is clear that X is not doing enough to moderate content and has no clear strategy for dealing with political disinformation,” Graham told Guardian Australia.

Graham was reported to have tracked misinformation and bot activity on social media for several years including until Musk took over Twitter in October 2022.

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