A Twitter Phishing Attempt ? This was the first thing that came to my mind when I saw this email in my inbox
Not used to seeing a new twitter follower mail like this ever I was a bit alarmed, to find out more I checked what URL were the hyperlinks pointing to and as it turned out the hyperlinks were all pointing to twitter.com. Then it occured to me that maybe twitter has changed the format of it’s notifcation mails, which as it turns out is the case. Here’s what the older follower notification mail looked like.
The new format of notification definitely looks better and adds value by sharing more information about the “new follower” like their profile picture, number of updates, follower and following count. Also, a small extention to this change could be to also share the one line user bio, that’ll further assist users to know more about their new follower and in turn be helpful in deciding if they should follow them back or not.
Let’s see what the change could mean
1) Reduction in number of clicks/visits to the site: Needless to say, a lot of views which twitter was getting due to new follower notification will go down as the details in many cases would be sufficient for the person being followed to not follow back(not popular, newbie, bot etc)
2) Increase in usage of block feature: Since identifying bot/spam users will become easy and the notification now also has a block button, the usage of block feature will rise and might lead to more cases of spam account deletions.
3) Better Tracking: Since the new notification mails have hyperlinks with analytics tracking code, their usage metrics will be recorded and can be improved
These are some of the possible implications of this change, there would be some more interesting patterns that’ll emerge with time for ex: peope might start to decide if someone is worth following back by just seeing their following/follower ratio(which isn’t always right) or people with beautiful/interesting pics will get more follow backs.
What do you think about these changes ? Do you think the service should notify its users about such changes ?
PS: Did you notice the order of user stats in the mail with their follower count on top ?