Twitter Status: Correcting follower and following counts:
For some time, the follower and following counts we display have been incorrect for some folks. We’re soon to push a change that will address this issue. This means that the count you see in your sidebar should match what you see on your follower and following pages.
However, a consequence of this change is that follower counts will drop for some people. In particular, those with large followings may see significant changes as we correct for spam accounts and data inconsistencies. No legitimate followings should be affected—we’re just cleaning up artifacts in the system.
@Mashable took at look at this here too: Twitter Correcting Follower Counts: 1000s of Spammers Perish. Pretty much he repeats Twitters own message, as above. What’s of more interest on his blog entry are all the replies – over 500 when I looked, including my own, copied below:
I have (had) three accounts, one for close friends, a main bulk one and a new one I’ve been specifically adding spammers too…
My friends one… No losses at all
On my Whale account… I lost 370 bots out of over 10,000
(For this one I but lost few if any ‘following’ – I vet everyone I add, yes all!)
However, for my “spam” account* which I just started to look for bots – it went UP 400 for ‘friend’ and UP 700 for following (even after the purge)
*(This is largely manual but automated overnight to overnight)
Seems to me the bots are winning !