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23 million Twitter users are robots

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NEW YORK  — Humans only make up about 91.5% of Twitter users. The rest are robots.

In an analysis of its user base, Twitter said 23 million, or 8.5%, of its 271 million active users automatically tweet “without any discernible additional user-initiated action.” In other words, they’re computer-controlled Twitter feeds.

That’s not necessarily a great thing for the company’s bottom line — that’s 23 million accounts that aren’t looking at or clicking on Twitter ads. Some are also spam. Twitter said that fake or spam accounts made up less than 5% of its monthly active users.

But “Twitterbots,” as they’re called, aren’t all bad. Many of them are fun, and some can be really amusing.

Poetry dorks will appreciate @pentametron, which retweets tweets that are in iambic pentameter. (“backs killin after sleeping on the floor,” tweeted @saswillis_xx).

@YesYoureRacist will automatically retweet any tweet that begins “I’m not racist but….” @YesYoureSexist does the same for “I’m not sexist, but….” tweets. As the Twitterbot notes, those tweets are typically racist or sexist.

Do you have trouble spelling “sneak peak?” @StealthMountain will automatically reply with a correction: “I think you mean ‘sneak peek'”

And did you know that Big Ben has a Twitter feed? When the clock at the Palace of Westminster in London chimes, @big_ben_clock tweets out the time. At 4 p.m. GMT, expect to find “BONG BONG BONG BONG.”