She sat with her lap top on her legs, back up against the wall, her face bathed in a soft light. Her shinny brown hair, gently flowing across her shoulders, went perfectly with the bright orange top which clung to her shapely figure. He thought to himself, Gee wiz…I bet this 22 year old with the perfect body, would love to spend time hanging out with a middle aged, balding, overtly bitter guy. He clicked on her name to read her Twitter bio. She has such a lovely Twitter avatar photo; she must be single, and just dying to meet me, unlike all the real world super hotties, he thought as he moved his Star Trek action figure away from the mouse pad, lest it get knocked over. Shoveling a handful of Cheetos into his mouth, he shrugged, not much info there, but let’s click on her link anyway…then she will like me. He takes a sip from his rum and coke and realizes the link was trouble.
This is how I am viewed by the latest batch of spammers on Twitter. I don’t even like Cheetos.
Okay, I admit that as a rule, guys are simpletons. We are easily induced to click on links with pictures of women who have paid thousands of dollars to order from the ‘Super Size’ menu at their local house of plastic surgery and self-esteem. We make Pavlov’s dogs seem restrained. So I understand the marketing strategy of using pretty 20 somethings to get our attention. In my 20’s and 30’s, I welcomed such ‘high brow’ marketing, now I’m in my 40’s and it just pisses me off. I’m less stupid now.
I hate spammers and bots on twitter, to be sure, but when I see an angelic faces land in my mentions column, and they are trying to suck me into clicking on their link, I wish that she would just die. (Note: When I say she, I mean the slovenly, unwashed 34 year old, male, burger jockey, living in a tiny efficiency, over a tattoo parlor, who actually owns the Twitter account.) There are few things worse than the parasites who try to trick you to click on their link, except maybe this new breed. Yes, the parasites have devolved.
I mean devolved, not evolved, as they no longer even try to look like real accounts. They have zero followers, are following zero, and their Twitter stream is only @YourNameHere http://j.mp/xx7ray/, which was the shortened version of http://SellYourIdentityToDrugLordsinKKyrgyzstan.org or a link to the latest Bieber video, either way, you lose.
I don’t know how many people it takes to get an account pulled down? I do know this, each time I see one of these dregs of society, using photos of beautiful women, likely without the photographer or models permission, I ‘block and report’ spam. Then I tweet something snarky to the burger jockey, and include #blockopotamus in the tweet. My followers know that it means they should ‘block and report spam’ too. When I get a RT saying <Done, it makes my day and I feel a little less bitter. Sometimes I have a blueberry pop-tart to celebrate. Nom nom nom.
If you agree that we need to make Twitter a place which is hostile to these parasite, then let’s start with @mccuskerddscl7, she has no bio, zero followers, is following zero people and has tweeted 177 times, each with a link to something I would never consider clicking on. It is my hope that if enough of you block ‘her/him/it’, eventually there will be a comment below saying, “Brian, I too was filled with #howlermonkeyangst, when I read this post, so I sent your friend the #blockopotamus to get them, but they were already gone.”
If we, as a social media community, can band together, we can wipe this blight from the internet, much like the “Pop-Up” box has become a nearly extinct beast. Make Twitter safe for the people with something real to say. (Of course, I mean the slightly mad blahgers, who want to take over the world, by carpet bombing snark at every chance.) Now I am off to find a picture of a hottie for my own Twitter account.