Large Accounts Running Against Twitter’s Follow Limit

While Twitter had their 1,000 followers per day limit for quite awhile, it has only been recently that they’ve started to enforced that limit on everyone. Before, the limit was placed on new accounts and older accounts were able to follow more than 1,000 per day.

Now you may be thinking that no one needs to follow more than 1,000 people per day. However, for the large Twitter users who have a policy of following people who follow them, the new limit is making it impossible for them to do so.

For example, many of the Net’s biggest Twitter user, like Barack Obama and Whole Foods, will follow you if you follow them. And many small Twitter users do the same thing. Accounts getting less than 1,000 followers per day wouldn’t run into any problems. However, Obama gets over 10,000 per day following him. Before Twitter imposed their limit on everyone, Obama was able to follow everyone back. Now, he can only follow the first 1,000. Everyone above the limit will be disappointed that the President of the United State didn’t follow them back. I have ran into this problem myself recently. There has been days when more than 1,000 people have followed me but I couldn’t follow all of them back because of the limit.

But isn’t Twitter about social networking? Why limit who I network with?

Twitter’s response to their following limits is to say they’re not a social network and not for the sake of creating mutual connections.

Twitter may facilitate social networking, but we’re not specifically a social networking website. In fact, the way Twitter works is quite different from social networks: when you accept friend requests on social networks, it usually means you appear in that person’s network and they appear in yours.

Following on Twitter is quite different, because instead of indicating a mutual relationship, following is a one way action that means you want to receive information, in the form of Twitter updates, from a person or entity. Twitter allows people to opt in to (our out of) receiving a person’s updates without requiring mutual following.

If you have a public account, I can follow you but you don’t have to follow me. Unlike most social networks, you follow me on Twitter NOT for the sake of a mutual connection, but because you want to get my updates, regardless of whether or not I get yours. If I want to read your updates too, I can– and unlike social networks, if you change your mind and un-follow me, it doesn’t stop me from continuing to follow you.

Twitter put the 1,000 per day limit to prevent spam by stopping people from aggressively following others. However, is following people who follow you being aggressive or being courteous? While most Twitter users don’t get more than 1,000 per day following them, those that do are finding it very frustrating to not being able to follow everyone who follow them. If Twitter allows an unlimited number of people to follow you, they should allow you to follow all of them back. The 1,000 per day limit should apply to new followers only.

46 thoughts on “Large Accounts Running Against Twitter’s Follow Limit”

  1. I think for now the 1000/day should be enforced until Twitter can fix their Fail Whale and improve server capacity.

    You are right John, Twitter is a social networking tool and there should not be limits on the numbers (not just for old accounts either). Hopefully as Twitter improves, they can revert to its old self as Spam will find another method to appear eventually.

    [email protected]’s last blog post: Simplified Sunday #15 – Quick Tips Busy Investors Need To Use!

    1. Agent 001 says:

      I think they implemented the limit because their server is unable to handle the load.

  2. alex says:

    to follow there are limits? because I often do not follow other people.

    1. Michael Zhao says:

      Twitter knows that internet marketers know that Twitter is the new thing to be so Twitter put up some road block for us…

      Michael Zhao’s last blog post: End of Second Week.

  3. Jack Woods says:

    Is this the beginning of plans for a paid service? Freebie accounts can follow 1000 a day, but paid accounts will have a higher limit? I can understand the need for limits, but 1000 per day is unrealistic.

    Jack Woods’s last blog post: Making A Custom Facebook URL For The Rest Us

    1. Jake Stone says:

      I’m right there with you Jack. It’s truly unrealistic that, let’s say, Barack Obama or his team would find it useful to really check what their followers are doing.

      It’s a huge task to wade anything meaningful from that flood of blurbs. Marketer should ask if it is important to have people that follow you or back-follow you.

      But you probably hadn’t this in your mind when you wrote “unrealistic”.

      Jake Stone’s last blog post: Sales stories carnival volume 8

  4. I have a bit more beef with the 2,000 follow limit in general. Even though one of my Twitter accounts has almost 2,000 followers, I can only follow 2,000 back.

    Chris Jacobson’s last blog post: Sunday Chatter – 4/26

  5. jono says:

    I’m tending to agree with Twitter on this one.

    You actually don’t want to follow more than 1000 people/day to find out what they are doing, you just want to repay people for following you.

    What’s the point of all that crap bouncing around when no-one actually wants it?

    jono’s last blog post: 2009 Progress – Q1

    1. Jake Stone says:

      Dear jono, the social media folks say that this is the beginning of new species. No need to educate yourself, because all the important stuff gets pushed right to your IM client. Also, just think of all the money you are going to make by tweeting – Buy now, only 2 hours left until we close our insider Twitter Marketing Diamond Gold Silver Club!

      Jake Stone’s last blog post: Sales stories carnival volume 8

    2. Karl says:

      Couldn’t agree more.

      Karl’s last blog post: My productiveness so far

    3. Michael Zhao says:


      Michael Zhao’s last blog post: End of Second Week.

  6. Greg Ellison says:

    I think you should follow has many people as you want. I think you are being curtious when you follow other people. They need to improve on availability and stability of their servers. Thanks Greg Ellison

    Greg Ellison’s last blog post: Where to Find Mig Welders

  7. It was crazy to see that Obama has almost a million folks following him on twitter! I remember being impressed when he was running for president and had fifty thousand following him. Twitter is growing like a freaking wildfire! I’m excited to see who is the first marketer to make some serious money directly related to the service!

    The Almost Millionaire’s last blog post: Tips for New Bloggers

  8. Nathan says:

    thats is just not right with a limit like that it does not work

    Nathan’s last blog post: Advertise

  9. Right now I still do not have a problem from that limit per day, I am just getting 20 followers per day so I just need some other 980 followers per day to reach that point.

    But I am totally agree that they do not should put this limit to follow your new followers, for me that is like been uncourteous. Right now that makes me unfollow people. My policy is follow meanwhile they still following me.

    Marketing Business Review’s last blog post: DoFollow Blogs List of Lists

    1. Jake Stone says:

      I wonder if everybody is just following someone to have someone to follow them back. Soon everybody will say that this party sucks and they go to a different bar. Some will even go clubbing. Now, I’m gonna follow those people.

      Jake Stone’s last blog post: Sales stories carnival volume 8

  10. Hao says:

    Hmm, uncool from twitter, I mean, I don’t care about the limit myself since I’ll never get there (or at least not soon enough), but your Obama example is excellent. At least they should whitelist “confirmed” twitter accounts

    Hao’s last blog post: Poken: Gotta catch ‘em all!

    1. Michael Zhao says:

      Hey, it’s their site…

      Michael Zhao’s last blog post: End of Second Week.

  11. I would not have that problem but it’s quite a silly rule. I think it’s a matter of time before a new site comes along to crush Twitter and their shortcomings.

    [email protected]’s last blog post: Friend Or Follow – A Must Use Twitter Tool

  12. I actually accept Twitter’s explanation on their policy – that Twittering for the sake of a mutual connection. It is indeed not a social networking website like Facebook and I think it is the policy that makes Twitter unique.

    Exposing SEO Techniques’s last blog post: Listen to Howard Stern Exposing a Screeching Beyonce

  13. I don’t use twitter and I wouldn’t care much about this, but I think It’s going to hurt perhaps a few crazy seo’s who subscribe to anything and everything

    Making dollars online’s last blog post: Making Money Online – Possible??

  14. Nishadha says:

    I don’t see why you should follow people if you are not really going to read there tweets. As Jone mentioned its unncessary crap flying around

  15. twitter may say it’s not a social networking site but majority of the people refer to it as one, but just like every other social network site they eventually run their course and something bigger and better will come along and that will end up being the new craze

  16. Well Done Twitter….They should actually go for 500 users/day otherwise people would misuse the service.

    Internetsalsa’s last blog post: Susan Boyle Lied

  17. Melody says:

    I’m so glad Twitter outlined what they–the actual company consider themselves–a non social networking site. People have used this idea as an “etiquette” requirement for people to reciprocate follows, when it’s all supposed to be about signing up for tweets you want to hear about.

    Melody’s last blog post: Logo Design Process for Bulls Battle Bears

  18. That is so stupid from Twitter I hate the limit. Hope they do soon something about it, as you said in social media there should not be any limits!

  19. diabetes man says:

    thank you has to share the information useful, I hope you blog more popular

  20. This is bad news for some, but I personally don’t really care about the limit, I won’t get there anyway 🙂

  21. One more stunning post from you on Twitter ..!!

    As far as Twitter follow limits are concerned there are lots of myth which are prevailing on Internet but the funny thing is in spite of this myths many users are getting most benefit out of Twitter.

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

  22. Dino says:

    Thats true, i noticed the same problem. Well as for now its still fine, because most people are not reaching 1000 followers a day. So i doubt it would affect the rest of 95% of twitter users.

  23. Paul B says:

    The amount of [email protected] flying around on Twitter is slowly but surely killing the true social networking sites. How many people Tweet nothing else but URL’s to their latest posts, affiliate products etc etc What was a good idea has been taken over and trashed by spammy internet marketers. The biggest example is FaceBook, Twitter has killed the FaceBook homepage.

    Anything that Twitter can do to limit this is a good thing, why should you follow somebody who wants to follow you? Why should you be interested in what somebody has to say just because they are interested in what you say?

    If I had influence at Twitter i’d encourage them to discount any form of recicpricol following from their stats, that way it would encourage people to only follow people they are truelly interested in, not just those that will follow back in a mutual link tweeting orgy.

    Paul B’s last blog post: How To Start Making A PROFIT With Affiliate Marketing

    1. Melody says:

      I certainly agree..I think twitter originally created their website for friends/loved ones/people who want to meet other people to share interests, and “what they’re doing” without related obligation….

      what happens is that one person begins using twitter for marketing–then everyone jumps on the bandwagon without ever considering if its right for them–or if they’re method of using it is truly beneficial for them..this happens throughout the marketing industry with different marketing tactics..

      Of course internet marketers would then be upset if there was a separate twitter for marketing/business related tweets, because then they wouldn’t be able to spam the general public..

      Melody’s last blog post: Logo Design Process for Bulls Battle Bears

      1. Paul B says:

        I think charging people to Tweet a URL would do the trick. If anybody from Twitter is reading this then please please please bring it back to what (I assume) it was originally meant for.

        Paul B’s last blog post: How To Start Making A PROFIT With Affiliate Marketing

  24. Dean Saliba says:

    Is it just me or am I the only one who thinks that 1,000 a day limit is more than fair?

    Dean Saliba’s last blog post: Follow Me On Twitter

    1. Arfan says:

      hahah I think it’s you

      Arfan’s last blog post: Don’t waste your time on the movie “Fighting”

  25. Tinh says:

    Great to know but limit is not the good way now

    Tinh’s last blog post: BlogViet Xác Lập Kỷ Lục Mới Cho Riêng Mình

  26. Bibokz says:

    Twitter must come out something reasonable… why not expand their bandwidth.

    Bibokz’s last blog post: Wanted Hackers: $2 Million Prize Waiting

  27. fas says:

    I am going to make a new Twitter site which will allow unlimited follow 🙂

    fas’s last blog post: How To Make Money From Home

  28. indiana john says:

    1000 followers limit is good enough,u will get
    good traffic

    indiana john’s last blog post: 24 Tips and Strategies on How Everyone Can Blog Right andGet

  29. Free Movies says:

    i think in twitter,there should not be limit to followersYou can add more…

  30. Timon Weller says:

    I agree with John here, I believe there should be no limits to the big accounts which want to follow back a new follower.

    However I understand twitters side as well trying to control the limits of use. Its a two sided issue..

    Timon Weller’s last blog post: The Wow Cool Factor in Affiliate Marketing

  31. BillyWarhol says:

    It’s Bloody Ridiculous!! Twitter should be LIMITED to 2000 Users + then we’ll see what they’re VALUED at!!

    A BIG FAT ZERO FAIL WHALE!! Stoopid Idiots!!


    I’ve been using to clear out some Deadwood ie they haven’t Tweeted in 30 or 60 Daze etc.

    But still it’s RUDE not to be able to Follow people back! How can I Follow HOTTIES like MrsKutcher + Beyonce + Britney Spears + Ellen + Oprah with this DUMB Limit!!

    BillyWarhol’s last blog post: Who is Your Guru? & Why are You Not Rich??

  32. bookoftips says:

    i think they have their own strategy on why they impose these rules. we will never know.

  33. Ekey says:

    In reality, you can’t keep everyone happy. I would rather have this limit and get rid of some of the spammers… who are just mass following everyone. And using their account for spamming purposes.

  34. I think for this they should make an exception. This can be as per the reputation of accounts or may be time period of accounts, but there must be something so that genuine and famous account holder like you will not get effected.

    ZK @ Web Marketing Blog’s last blog post: Oprah reaches 1 million followers on Twitter

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