Twitter bots have been the topic of discussion for quite some time now. These automated user accounts can tweet, retweet, send DMs and follow people. They've been used to tweet about earthquakes in real-time and even engage people during different campaigns by spreading content at a rate that isn't possible by humans. According to research in 2017, about 15% of twitter accounts were found to be bots.
An interesting fact is that one bot can't work alone to attract a large audience. There's a whole network of bots that follow each other to appear legitimate and heavily spread content across the platform.
Many bot administrators use stealth tactics to make bot accounts appear like a human account. So be vary that an account can function as a bot at one time and involve human interaction at other to give you an idea that it is a human user account.
In a recent development, Vijaya Jade who works as a Legal, Trust, Policy and Safety Leader at Twitter has told the Wall Street Journal that Twitter is considering to label bot accounts.
“We currently have a verification system which verified the identity of folks on Twitter, and it’s a simple blue checkmark. You can imagine something that is some sort of a ‘humanness’ label, and we’re doing some work to figure out the best way to do that within the product." said Jane.
Many bots are quite helpful, like the ones that extract videos from tweets or the Netflix bot that keeps users updated about new releases. So it is good that Twitter isn't thinking about banning all bot accounts.
By labeling bots, the platform would be able to provide more transparency by making it clearer that who or what is behind an account. Users can expect to see a label on bot profiles soon.