Twitter Suspends Romney Parody Account Just Before Speech

In a move that brings to mind Twitter’s recent suspension of Guy Adams (after he criticized Twitter advertiser NBC for its lackluster Olympics coverage), a Mitt Romney parody account, @MexicanMitt, was suspended last night – just before Romney gave his speech.

Where’s the similarity? #RomneyRyan2012 was a promoted trend last night – and promoted trends are not cheap.

Buying a promoted trend isn’t shady, of course – it’s smart. And according to Clickz, the Romney campaign was pretty proud of the “ad” buy:

“To trend for a day is a far more significant investment in resources,” than other Twitter ad buys like Promoted Tweets and Promoted Accounts, said Moffatt. The Promoted Trend has been known to cost as much as $120,000 a day. Moffatt said the campaign is not paying more than $120,000 for the ad but would not say exactly how much it would cost.

So based on what we know, they must have paid between $100-120,000.

Now to the parody account.

@MexicanMitt is a pretty popular parody account – and it was suspended last night just before Romney gave his speech (times are PT):


Why was it suspended? The account owner was baffled – as the chain below demonstrates. The account owner tells us this the first time the account has been suspended and it has been active since January 2012.


Okay, so what – someone made a mistake or maybe the account really seemed to be attempting to fool readers into thinking it was Romney . . . wearing a sombrero and calling himself Mexican Mitt. No. Just, no.
And beyond that? Only affected parties can report violations. So someone from Mitt Romney’s campaign really believed that this account was someone pretending to BE Mitt Romney? And that readers would think this was Mitt?
And what on earth could these representatives have said to Twitter to make this case? And why wouldn’t Twitter then say: “Come on, really?”

And finally, there’s another “parody” account mocking a ‘non-promoted trend buying’ candidate: @FadedObama.
If Romney can be mistaken for @MexicanMitt, then couldn’t someone mistake @FadedObama for Obama? IT doesn’t state that its a parody anywhere either.
Maybe Twitter isn’t aware of the account? Nah, they are. They wrote about it on their blog actually – but they somehow knew that this account was a parody without the explicit “I’m a parody” disclaimer:
The person who brought this suspension to our attention asked if we thought Twitter was going to make a practice of shutting down accounts on advertisers’ whims.
We can’t answer that question – but someone at Twitter probably should.
(Mexican Mitt image from Twitter)