Twitter Shadowbanning AKA The Circles Of Hell

A while ago I wrote about Twitter shadowbans. While it’s no laughing matter, I did make a joke about how no one knows exactly how it works, how many levels there are…

This became abundantly apparent to me recently when I discovered something new. New — and hideous.

But let me back up a bit, first.

No one knows exactly what is happening with Twitter shadowbans. Twitter won’t really confess to the practice. Even when you document what you can, use tools to check, etc.. But the basic premise is that while the shadowbanned are hidden from the general population, Twitter itself appears “normal” to shadowbanned.

However, I have noticed some inconsistencies which have led me to believe there are various types or levels of shadowbanning. Hence my levels of Hell reference.

It seems that in some cases of shadowbanning, it’s as simple (and devious) as noted above. If/when you are shadowbanned, you are not notified this has happened. Your Twitter experience looks the same. However, you will likely notice a few problems. For one, your stats aka analytics will show a drop in activity. When using search, you cannot find yourself — not by username or handle, not by hashtags. This is that part about others not being able to find you. Additionally, folks you mention (i.e. tweet to, using their @ handle) do not get notices that you have done so. Also, folks won’t get notices that you retweeted or replied to their tweets etc.. Leaving you to feel ignored or iced-out. Or just crazy.

The theory has been that you, the shadowbanned Twitter account, will not experience such things from folks who follow you. Meaning those who follow you will still see your tweets, can find you in searches and will get notices of mentions, replies, etc., and you will get notices from them too.

Yet, it doesn’t always seem to be so. For even when you follow all your followers, notifications go missing.

As it is difficult to prove a negative, this has made documenting shadowbans difficult.

However, I have just stumbled into another Twitter shadowban phenomenon — another circle of Hell. And I will document it here as best I can.

In this circle or level of Twitter’s Shadwoban Hell, even when you follow a shadowbanned account — and they follow you too — you will not find that their hashtags do not work.

For example, both CR/LF and I follow one another. I can see his tweets. (I’d show you a screencap, but there are boobs – hence his shadowban lol)

Yet, his tweets do not show up in searches. He only shows up in searches of “people”.

And relatively recently, he made a thread of sorts using the hashtag maybeishouldmasturbateinstead (a rather funny series of tweets with a rather powerful social commentary, I thought) — but even while I was able to read his tweet, clicking the hash resulted in nothing.

Like it never existed.

Puzzling, right?

And it makes it near impossible to find, follow, & share such tweets.

(And note to self: If you don’t want to risk this, make a real thread by using the reply function.)

But this weird bit of shadowbanning has more weirdness… Apparently, it also affects accounts which have, at some point or other, been shadowbanned — but are now fine. Case in point: The Peck & Call Girls. They have been shadowbanned a time or two – but are currently “normal.” Again, we follow one another. Yet, when I click on this tweet with the makebeautifulmusictogether hash, there are no results. Well, I should say, there were no results. After three days, the search results appeared.

Indicating what? That it takes a while to be unshadowbanned? …Does one need to move through the various circles of Hell while being reinstated?

Hell if I know.

What does this mean for you? What if you find yourself stuck in a circle of Hell? Well, you might not be able to name the circle of Hell, and therefore find yourself unable to identify just how to get out of it…

Advice on how to avoid or rid yourself of Twitter shadowban practices varies. Widely. And this too adds to my belief that there are a number of circles or levels. But best practices include:

* Avoid over-use of automated services. Not just platform promotional tweets based on sales etc., but those astrology things and even papers.

* Avoid over-use of hashtags. No more than 2 or 3 per tweet. And do not hijack mainstream trending hashtags with your adult smut.

* Avoid over-use of tweets with links. Not just adult links. Not only links to your site, platform, etc. But any links at all. Just tweet text. You know, speak like a person.

* Avoid over-use of mentions or tagging.

* Avoid tons of RTs, especially if from a specific account or two. Add to the conversation with a reply or, if you don’t mind being orphaned from the discussion, using the “Quote Tweet” option.

* Avoid over-use of adult images. (There are other images to share, ya know. And tease is a huge part of this industry!)

In many ways this is just a “do not be a spammer” thing.

Use a lot of text only tweets.

Yes, being flagged, blocked, muted, etc. is a problem — one which disproportionately is applied to — and censors — adult topics and accounts. That we cannot, as of yet, avoid. But we can likely limit other offenses, deeper circles of Hell.

3 thoughts on “Twitter Shadowbanning AKA The Circles Of Hell

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