Twitter Followers and Following Limits Explained

To help control spam, maintain the integrity of the network and prevent that dreaded Failed Whale from showing up too often, Twitter maintain limits on how many people you can follow and how often you can follow. For those who don’t know the limits, this post will lay them out.

Maximum Following Limit: 2,000 or 110% of Followers

The maximum number of people you can follow at any one time is 2,000 or 110% of your followers, whichever is higher. So, if you have less than 2,000 followers, you can follow up to 2,000 people.

If you have more than 2,000 followers, you can follow up to 110% of that figure. So, if you have 5,000 people following you, you can follow 5,500.

Maximum Daily Following Limit: 1,000

Twitter limits the number of accounts that a single person can follow in a day to 1,000. For a long time, this limit was not evenly applied across the network. Many users were able to follow far more than 1,000 per day. However, Twitter recently started to enforce this 1,000 per day limit on all accounts.

Maximum Followers: Unlimited

While Twitter place limits on how many people you can follow, there are currently no limits on how many can follow you. This explains why new accounts like Oprah surged to almost 500,000 followers in less than week. However, if Oprah wishes to follow all those people back, she’ll have to do it 1,000 people at a time.

34 thoughts on “Twitter Followers and Following Limits Explained”

  1. Great information. Many new users don’t know the limits and often question why they’re even in place at all.

    Steven-Sanders’s last blog post: New WordPress Plugin To Connect With Your Readers

    1. Lee Ka Hoong says:

      Yes, one of them is me. Because I don’t have that much of followers, so I will never hit the limit. lol! But it’s good to know. Thanks John! 🙂


      Lee Ka Hoong’s last blog post: 7 Reasons Why A Blogger Quit Blogging

      1. I reach it and it is frustrating until you know how to unfollow people that are not following you and can follow again.

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

  2. Amazon Fan says:

    So that we must follow as many as people to get enough followers back. I doubt that the people who follows 10000 persons have time to look at the twitter message everytime.

    Amazon Fan’s last blog post: Monopoly Here and Now World

  3. Ryan McLean says:

    I don’t think Oprah will be wanting to follow 500,000 people.
    Imagine trying to read 500,000 tweets per day.

    I use twitter a little bit, but not a whole lot. I would love to get more followers to make tweeting more worthwhile.

    What is your best tip to get started using twitter? For someone that has not used it before.

    1. I’d suggest starting to communicate with individuals in your niche – and developing a band of friends within Twitter. This “fellowship,” shall I say – will become invaluable as you continue to grow your brand and readership.

      Smart Boy Designs’s last blog post: How Bloggers Can Help The Planet On Earth Day

  4. Giselle says:

    Interesting, never really realized this so much. But it makes sense and the limit is a bit more useful that facebook’s.

    Giselle’s last blog post: Setting up for Success

  5. Bati says:

    Really a good post here.Twitter is a good way to increase traffic.

    Bati’s last blog post: 20 Great Short URL Comments part “1″

  6. I just hope this helps with the load time at Twitter. Twitter loads so slow, it would be nice that these restrictions help.

    Alex |’s last blog post: You Can Now Follow @Blogussion on Twitter!

  7. hopefully this will limit spam, tho I’m sure people will just spam via multiple accounts to skirt around the daily limits…I agree with Alex, these limits better help with load times, I’m sick of seeing that whale each time I want to use twitter…its more ofter overloaded than not lately!

    [email protected]’s last blog post: How One Remark Changed Everything…

  8. I don’t seem to have a problem with the limits.

  9. Melody says:

    I had always previously heard that the limit was 2000 even though I saw people following 10000 people…
    Ashton Kutcher has over a mil followers–I can’t imagine how many direct messages and @replies he receives..

    Thanks for the insight..

    Melody’s last blog post: Commenting on 200 blogs

    1. Kenneth Lee says:

      I read that Britney Spears is not far behind, and some fans were followed by Britney herself! O.O

      Kenneth Lee’s last blog post: Key Tips to Gain Web Traffic

    2. I guess they can only choose the most interestng ones to reply.

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

  10. Kenneth Lee says:

    Thanks for the info Mr. Chow. Oprah really amazes me, for being able to gain so many followers within such a short period of time!

  11. Greg Ellison says:

    Great post on Twitter following. Anybody that wants to follow me I am at If you follow me I will follow you. Thanks Greg Ellison

    Greg Ellison’s last blog post: PC Angel Recovery Sucks Sometimes

  12. i find John have be addictive in twitter

    1. Bati says:

      Yeah i think so.John Chow have posted many article about twitter here.But twitter really a good way to improve traffic

      Bati’s last blog post: How to make your blog can not earn money?

  13. Rachael says:

    Thanks for the info! I recently got stuck at following 2,000 people and didn’t know why.

    Rachael’s last blog post: Writing the body of your nursing scholarship essay.

    1. Rachael, you can just unfollow the people that are not following you and then you can improve your ratio and be able to follow again.

      You can use to see who is not following you. I got this tip from John in an earlier post. Now I am able to follow all the people I want again.

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

      1. rachael says:

        Thanks for the advice. I was manually unfollowing people. I did not know about but I just found out about which let’s me see who I’m following but isn’t following me and vice versa.

        rachael’s last blog post: Wrapping up your nursing scholarship essay.

  14. Thanks for the info, I never knew there is a limit

  15. Great information. Many new users don’t know the limits and often keep adding people which is actually counted as SPAM. I have heard many guys across Internet saying they can not follow more then 2000 Guys & keep getting error that please refresh your page and try again.

    Thanks for sharing John.

    Ricky Peterson’s last blog post: How to increase credibility of your Blog?

  16. Thanks John
    very useful

  17. LOL, I really don’t have this problem 🙂 I’m lucky if a couple people a day follow me.

    Christopher Ross’s last blog post: How to make money with Google ads.

  18. Kenneth Lee says:

    Oprah FTW! In fact I just checked and she has got like 482,073 followers. Amazing!

  19. The spam on Twitter is annoying. I’m always getting marketers that follow me & then when I check out their profiles, it’s pretty much nothing but them trying to sell their products. There are better ways to do this on Twitter.

    TYCP Entertainment Magazine’s last blog post: Courtney Van Dusen Interview

  20. I got into that limit but now I am using to unfollow people that are not returning the favor so I can follow my followers back.

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

  21. Flyssy says:

    twitterkarma is actually better to use for unfollowing, as you can unfollow in bulk, unlike with friend or follow.

    Flyssy’s last blog post: Gibson’s Eye Guitar – a future collectable?

  22. If you get Oprah to follow you, you can easily get extra few hundred thousand twitter followers.

    TheEllenShow is over 1,000,000+ followers

    WordPress Themes’s last blog post: FolioTastic WordPress Theme

  23. Mr. Obama was able to follow everyone back pretty quick! 🙂


  24. Mitch says:

    It’s probably about time; it had gotten ridiculous, and we all know that most of it was spam and software related.

    Mitch’s last blog post: Six Things I’ve Learned About Affiliate Marketing

  25. Caden Grant says:

    Great info. I hate how Twitter limits it to 1,000 people per day.

    Caden Grant’s last blog post: Add A Link To Digg, Delicious And More To Your Blog Posts

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