Andrew Tate’s Twitter account has been reinstated five months ago and he now has more than 6 million followers.
After he was arrested in Romania, and after he had been placed under home arrest, his profile soared in popularity.
When his profile was re-posted in November, the controversial influencer only had 38.400 followers. Tate now has over 6.4 million fans.
Researchers estimate that Tate’s traffic could generate almost PS10m worth of advertising revenue for Twitter each year.
He was banned at the end of October 2017, after posting offensive tweets. One now-deleted tweet said: “Next, if you place yourself in a situation to be raped you must bear some responsibility.” I’m certainly not saying that it’s okay you were raped.
Elon Musk, CEO of Twitter, has reinstated a number of blocked accounts. Tate was one of those who were brought back to Twitter on 18 November 2022.
Influencer marked his return with a picture of himself.
Archive screenshots from Tate’s Twitter account show that his account went up to 1 million followers in 48 hours.
Tate’s popularity has grown since his account was reinstated. A month after that, his followers had nearly reached three million.
Tate is a British-American citizen who was arrested in Romania on 29th December. He faces accusations of sexual assault, exploitation and organised crime, which he denies.
On that particular day, hundreds of thousands of users chose to follow Tate. In 24 hours, his followers increased from 3.4 to 3.8 millions. By the end of December, he had four million followers.
After he was released from prison on 31 March and placed under house arrest, his popularity surged again. On that day, he gained half a milllion followers.
Tate currently has 6.4 millions followers. This means that Tate gained an average of 40,000 followers per day since 18 Nov.
Tate’s rate of growth is unusually rapid.
Jordan B Peterson, another controversial figure on Twitter who was suspended by Mr Musk the same day that Tate, has been reinstated.
He was brought back to life with three million followers and has now 4.1 million.
A comparison could be drawn with Greta Thunberg who, at the time of Tate’s arrest, was involved in a heated Twitter debate with him.
Tate’s Instagram profile has gained nearly a million new followers between 29 December and the 5th of December. Ms Thunberg also gained 600,000 followers in the same period. Tate has now surpassed Thunberg’s follow count of 5.8 millions.
Bots can artificially inflate the number of followers for some high-profile users. These automated profiles are either bought to boost popularity, or they may be installed without a person’s knowledge or consent.
The changes made by Mr Musk to Twitter’s tech means that it’s no longer possible for researchers to test for suspected robots at the same level as before. This means it’s not possible to check Tate’s entire list of followers for bots.
Norton, an online security company, offers free software that allows users to determine in real-time whether a Twitter account is a fake. Users highlighted in red are suspect.
Sky News used the BotSight program to analyze the first 100 profiles of the people who recently followed Tate.
A quarter of the accounts appeared to be questionable, and another quarter was suspicious. No bot accounts have been confirmed.
According to the Centre for Countering Digital Hate, Tate’s Twitter popularity could be bringing significant revenue to the platform.
Sky News was the exclusive recipient of research conducted by the centre. It found that Twitter could make up to PS9.8m in annual advertising revenue just from Tate’s Twitter account. Researchers believe this may be one reason why controversial accounts were allowed to return to Twitter.
Callum Hood, CCDH’s head of Research, said to Sky News that Twitter had made a deliberate business decision to reinstate Andrew Tate – and many other extreme accounts.
It has become a must see attraction for Andrew Tate’s cult following because it’s the only mainstream platform that still hosts his personal account.
Twitter gives him the exposure and legitimacy he needs to gain a legion of new fans.
Based on more than a months’ worth of Tate’s postings, the CCDH estimated that Tate’s Tweets generate an average of 35,000,000 “impressions” a daily (how many times a tweet is viewed).
The researchers used these data along with their research on how many Twitter ads appear and the cost of Twitter advertisements to estimate Twitter’s potential Tate-related earning.
Tate’s Twitter account is Tate’s most popular social media account.
After a little over an hour of watching YouTube Shorts , his content was moved to a “testing” account.
The influencer has two channels, both on Rumble. This is a platform for free-speech streaming video. Tate’s most popular channel has 1,16 million subscribers, while the one he has returned to Twitter has only 295,000.
Matt Navarra, a social media expert, explained to Sky News the reason for such a large difference between Tate’s followers on both platforms.
He said: “Platforms such as Rumble and other have much, much lower user bases and are considered alternative social platforms that are only appealing to those with fringe interest. It’s like a second-home for those who have been banned from everywhere else.
It’s not surprising to me that there won’t be such an explosive growth compared to Twitter, which has hundreds of millions users and is considered the mainstream social platform with broad appeal and wide-interest by many.
Sky News tried to contact Twitter’s press office regarding this article. The company didn’t reply. Instead, it sent an automated email with a poo-emoji as a response. This is the default reply for all messages to Twitter’s press office.
Data and Forensics
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