This is the worst nightmare for Twitter users: I wake up to find that most of my followers are gone. But this is exactly what happens to the official presidential account on Twitter on Wednesday. No, not @realDonaldTrump-he has been banned for life. This is the fate of waiting for lesser-known accounts such as @POTUS, @WhiteHouse, @FLOTUS, and @VP. (POTUS is the official abbreviation of the President of the United States; FLOTUS refers to the first lady.)

These institutional accounts do not belong to any specific individual. They are reserved for the use of current government officials for official use by the government. Twitter transferred them to President-elect Biden, once he was formally sworn in on Wednesday. The minus sign, that is, most of their followers.

This is different from the previous Twitter transition, when the official accounts of then President Barack Obama were transferred to President Donald Trump, while the followers remained intact. This time, these accounts will lose tens of millions of followers under the orders of Twitter.In addition to users who follow “Biden and Harris related accounts”, other users also use these accounts, such as @KamalaHarris, Will receive notifications they can follow.

Biden’s current account- @PresElectBiden —Once Biden himself becomes POTUS, it will be converted to @POTUS.

Biden’s team is not satisfied with this. Rob Flaherty, the president-elect digital director, tweeted last week that following the reset is “absolute and profoundly insufficient.”

In Twitter’s view, after resetting, users can choose whether to follow the new account.

The company said it has not yet decided whether to use this method during the power transfer. But spokesman Nick Passirio said this is the policy of other countries.

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As for Trump’s @POTUS account?It will be archived as @POTUS45, just like the Obama administration account is archived as @ POTUS44.

However, @realdonaldtrump is not the case. Although it has been widely archived by other platforms and researchers, it has disappeared from Twitter itself. This alone has aroused criticism from scholars and others, who believe that it should also be part of the public record and can be easily searched and accessed by anyone.

At the same time, Facebook adheres to its previous policy of “copying” the official White House Facebook and Instagram accounts of all 11 million followers to the new administration. At the same time, Trump’s POTUS and related accounts will be archived, and Biden will receive a new one. Account. .

Will WhatsApp’s new privacy policy end your privacy? We discussed on the weekly technical podcast Orbital, you can subscribe via Apple Podcast, Google Podcast or RSS, download the episode, or click the play button below.