Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Dublin: 20°C Tuesday 9 August 2022

Twitter files lawsuit against spammers

The social networking company said it is suing five persistent spambots in an attempt to crack down on the high volume of spam encountered by users.

Image: Martin Keene/PA Wire

TWITTER HAS FILED a lawsuit in a US court against five websites that create tools designed to distribute spam across the social network.

In a statement on its blog, the company said it is targeting the so-called spambots which send automated tweets to real users.

“With this [law] suit, we’re going straight to the source,” the statement said.

Regular users have often complained to the company about the high volume of spam, often triggered by using words such as ‘iPad’, ‘diet’, ‘debt’ and ‘Justin Bieber’ in tweets.

The company acknowledged what many users already know: as it has grown bigger, it has become a far more attractive target for spammers.

“Our engineers continue to combat spammers’ efforts to circumvent our safeguards, and today we’re adding another weapon to our arsenal: the law,” the statement said.

Twitter described the law suit against the websites which create spambots as “an important step forward”.

We are committed to fighting spam on all fronts, by continuing to grow our anti-spam team and using every tool at our disposal to shut down spammers.

The statement added:

This morning, we filed suit in federal court in San Francisco against five of the most aggressive tool providers and spammers. With this suit, we’re going straight to the source. By shutting down tool providers, we will prevent other spammers from having these services at their disposal. Further, we hope the suit acts as a deterrent to other spammers, demonstrating the strength of our commitment to keep them off Twitter.

Making a difference

A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article.

Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can make sure we can keep reliable, meaningful news open to everyone regardless of their ability to pay.

The social network has 140 million active users with more than 340 million tweets sent every day.

The Guardian reports that the defendants listed in the suit filed in a court in San Francisco are TweetAttacks, TweetAdder, TweetBuddy, James Lucero of and Garland E Harris of

Weird Wide Web: the week in online oddities >

Twitter seeks to more than double Irish workforce >

Read next: