More Twitter Problems – Random, And Massive, Unfollows. Particularly For @Moonalice

Following my article earlier today, another major Twitter problem has been brought to my attention – random unfollows.

Now, we’ve all suffered from that from time to time, and the ebb and flow of follow counts is part of the system. So losing one or two people every day, even every hour, isn’t that big a deal.

But what about if you lost 65 per cent? And what if you lost them instantly?

Because that’s exactly to the band Moonalice, whose follower count suddenly dropped from 2,119 on to 741 yesterday, all at once.

The band are well-aware of the problem and have reported it to Twitter.

Have they had a response? What do you think? It’s clearly a glitch – no band, no matter how bad they are, loses two-thirds of their fans like that. And Moonalice, by all accounts, are pretty good. They were certainly popular enough to have a very solid follow-to-follower ratio.

Moonalice are no strangers to Twitter, or good business practice. The band’s lead guitarist is venture capitalist Roger McNamee and they have held a series of live Twitter-integrated concerts, with some success. Indeed, they may have set the precedent in how all musicians could leverage Twitter to their advantage. Says TechCrunch:

Immediately following each song during the show, Moonalice’s sound team took the song’s audio, digitized it, uploaded it and then “Tweeted” about its availability – all before the group finished playing the next song at the live concert. The sound team used TinyURL to Tweet a link to a site where users could listen and download the song. Moonalice saw such a resounding response from followers on Twitter and fans that the band decided to do the same thing for the next two concerts. Because of the live Twitter integration, Moonalice says that its seen 3000 downloads of its music in the past week and a half (from just the tweets and retweeting).

The tragic part is Twittercounter’s prediction for their followers tomorrow, assuming the trend continues – 28. That’s unlikely to happen (indeed, few of Twittercounter’s predictions come to pass), but still, how would you feel if 65 per cent of your followers were suddenly lost because of a bug?

And what if they don’t return? Is Twitter in some way accountable? Believe me, I’d love to see @Biz, @Ev et al out ‘in the streets’ with flyers and t-shirts, trying to convince people to into following Moonalice, but I’ll believe it when I see it. Meantime, you can do your part by following Moonalice here.

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