I've noted before that I really don't care who follows me on Twitter. Spammer, scammer, porn bot, marketer, whatever – I don't care. That doesn't mean I don't notice things in my follower list, though. I gain new followers infrequently enough that I opt to recieve emails from Twitter telling me when someone new follows me. I notice.
I've been using Twitter for just over three years. In that time, I've amassed about 950 followers. Now, I'm not foolish enough to believe that I've got 950 people paying attention to me, but the number is what it is. Over the past day or two, that number has gone up by over a hundred, putting me at 1,075 (at the time of this writing). Three years, 950. Less than three days, another 125 – and growing.
Now, I'd like to say that it's due to something that I wrote here or something that I posted somewhere else, but the truth is that every single person who has followed me in the past couple of days has been the result of my joining the 30 Day Challenge. All of the “people” who started following me have around 5,000 followers, they're following about an equal amount, and they have anywhere from 0 to 100 tweets. That's right, zero tweets. Some of these people racked up 5,000 followers without tweeting a damn thing.
Do I care if they're following me? Nope. Nothing's changed in that regard. Will I follow any of them back? Hell, no. These people provide no value. They're all – every single one of them – pitching various internet get-rich-quick schemes. You have to be either brain dead or one of them to follow any of them back. Come to think of it, I'm not sure those two things are mutually exclusive.
Update, June 10th
Interestingly, nearly all the followers I picked up have disappeared. I don't know if it's because Twitter deleted their accounts (possible, even likely) or if it's because they all simultaneously figured out that I wasn't going to follow them back. Either way, they're gone now.