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January 21, 2017

Unfollowing @POTUS could be difficult right now

by John_A

While we just learned of the detailed transition plan for Obama Administration social media accounts, things aren’t going quite as many users expected. Currently, many people have reported that despite unfollowing (or, in some cases, apparently never following) the @POTUS account on Twitter, they checked their accounts and are suddenly following it. According to company CEO Jack Dorsey in a series of tweets, what’s happening is an automated process plotted out by the Obama team.

What should be happening, according to @Jack, is that Twitter is replaying a series of actions from a snapshot it took at 9AM, transferring @POTUS followers to the new @POTUS44 account where Barack Obama’s history is archived and the new, fresh @POTUS as well. This was mentioned in the transition plans back in October, explaining that both accounts would end up with the (then 11 million or so) followers. The problem is that if you’ve unfollowed (or even blocked) since, it will apparently take time to catch up, and hasn’t completed yet.

@kristapley @keithcalder investigating. Script was to move POTUS to POTUS44 and new POTUS. Shouldn’t follow if there was never a follow

— jack (@jack) January 21, 2017

@taradublinrocks @3LWTV @SteveScalise @POTUS @WhiteHouse looking into this. We timestamped at 9a as planned (per post)

— jack (@jack) January 21, 2017

It’s unclear if everything is working exactly as planned, but it’s apparently still occurring right now. As it stands, if you’d like to follow or unfollow @POTUS, @FLOTUS or any of the other top-level White House accounts and took action on that within the last day or so, it may be better to wait until tomorrow and see where things stand. Or, you could keep flipping the switch and see what happens. Either way, this is the first transition of the social media era, and it doesn’t appear to be living up to user expectations. We’ll see if things are done in a similar way the next time there’s a change in the Oval Office.

@GlennF @edbott @POTUS if you unfollowed it will replay. Just taking time.

— jack (@jack) January 21, 2017

Source: Jack Dorsey (Twitter)

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