by Charles Miller on April 11, 2008

Dear Sir and/or Madam,

I noticed that you decided to "follow" me on Twitter. Not knowing who you were and mindful of the possibility you may be a friend, colleague or net.acquaintance using an obscure handle, I visited your Twitter homepage. On arriving, I discovered you were following a ridiculous number of other people.1 This led me to the understanding that you really only added me to draw my attention to your website/new project/bogus twitter joke-feed/self.

I'm sure you think that this is hip, clever, Web 2.0-style viral marketing, but let us examine the process here. You cause an automated system to send me an email. That email directs me, under false pretenses, to your website, for your personal gain. How is this not, in any reasonable interpretation of matters, spam?

You, sir, are a spammer. I spit on the ground you walk.

Yours in enmity,


Dear Twitter,

Please implement a simple feature whereby users are limited to following 100 people, or three times the number of people following them, whichever is greater. Tell any complainers that they should try to be more interesting.



1 in one case, 34,000. If you were truly following all these people, and they updated only once per day on average, you would be reading a Twitter message every two seconds.

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