Twitter bug zaps followers

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May 11, 2010 – Twitter was bitten by a bug on Monday that caused users of the fast-growing micro-blogging service to temporarily lose the list of followers of their accounts.

“We identified and resolved a bug that permitted a user to ‘force’ other users to follow them,” Twitter said.

“We’re now working to roll back all abuse of the bug that took place,” the San Francisco-based start-up said in a blog post.

Earlier Monday, popular technology blog Gizmodo published details about the bug explaining to Twitter users how they could force any other user to follow their account.

“Follow this dead-simple guide to force any Twitter user — from Oprah (Winfrey) to (Ashton) Kutcher — to follow you. No, seriously,” said Gizmodo.com, which was also in the news last month after it obtained and published details about the latest iPhone prototype from Apple.

Talk show host Winfrey has 3.5 million followers and follows 426 people while Hollywood star Kutcher has 4.8 million followers and follows 732 people.

Twitter’s efforts to close the hole briefly left a number of users — including Kutcher — with zero followers although the delivery of messages did not appear to have been affected.

The Twitter account of technology blog TechCrunch.com, for example, went from 1.4 million followers to zero.

Gizmodo said the bug was discovered by a Turkish Twitter user who “figured out accidentally that if you tweet ‘accept username,’ for example billgates, then Bill Gates will follow you.”

“For hours, thousands of people were able to take control of other people’s Twitter accounts with a trick so easy that even the newest Twitterer could execute it,” Gizmodo said.

Twitter, which allows users to pepper their followers with messages of 140 characters or less, said last month that it has topped 105 million registered users and is adding 300,000 new accounts a day.

The follower bug led to a flood of jokes on Twitter about the problem.

“Today’s Twitter follow count crash is like last week’s Stock Market crash, but bruising millions of egos ‘stead of losing millions of dollars,” Xeni Jardin, co-editor of Boingboing.net, said in a “tweet.”

 

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  • Johnngure

    Get well sir and thanks for sharing the information. Many people need this. I wish the government and parliament can allocate more resources to cancer diagnosis and treatment. I have witnessed more recent deaths as a result of cancer than AIDS

  • Ndwara

    I wish you quick recovery sir. I had my first encounter with Nalo when he was in ministry of industrialization and what he initiated at KEBS , KIRDI, KEBS and Kenya national jua kali association was a breakthrough to industrialization as far as vision 2030 is concerned. Though the project  was uplifted by his successor, it is sad that the current Ps was not briefed on the achievements and has taken the initiative to a different direction and it will definitely collapse. But we know God will give you strength to help other kenyans and initiate other development project.   

  • Amazing Writing

    Excellent article, what is oral observation ? 

  • NM

    Sadly it seems that we have to wish illness to befall our countries leadership for them to take healthcare in Kenya seriously. I lost a dad to bile duct cancer and his pain and suffering would have been avoided had the doctor’s chosen to take his annual check ups and illness seriously. He did annual check ups at Nairobi hospital and the cancer was never identified until when it was at Stage 4. He passed on 5 months later at that same Nairobi hospital. Interestingly he was treated by one of the doctors mentioned up there by the good PS and unfortunately I have nothing good to say about the quality of service rendered. They were more interested in getting their money and we kept hitting brick walls when we queried on his health status. The doctor, very respected in gastro illness dismissed my dad as being too old (77 years) and would die anyway and often queried why we’re spending so much money taking him to Nairobi Hospital or putting him into chemo or inserting a stent to redirect his bile juice instead of letting him die at home in ‘peace’. Thankfully, the problem was never the finance but our determination to save our dad from pain and perhaps hope for more time with him in health. I beleive we would not have been in that situation if: 1. the hospital’s annual check ups were as rigorous as required to nip the cancer in the bud, 2. that the doctors gave him the same attention that Mheshimiwa here got. The clock cannot be turned back but I wonder, should we pray for our leaders to be struck with a cross section of ailments for them to understand just how poorly we are doing as a country in health care?

    Get well PS, be grateful that since you’re a ‘mheshimiwa’ you’ll probably get better attention and treatment than us the ‘wanjikus’ requiring treatment for cancer in our hospitals. Remember to think of many others who cannot afford or whose names do not ring a bell struggling to get medical attention in our hospitals. 

  • Debzkahash

    Its amazing how fast u recovered . i wish’u well. The truth is its a nightmare to be diagnosed with cancer in this country especially when you do not have a health insurance or cant fly out to seek the treatment. of late we have been hearing our leaders tell us how they beat cancer and that is good. I urge them to improve healthcare for the wananchi so that they too can  have an experience to share.. 

  • Eveogutu

    Quick Recovery Bwana PS. You are such a courageous man. The Journey to EAC integration needs your gusto and energy and I know God will grant you the peace and serenity at this trying moments. Working with you has been an eye opener to me.

  • N.K.RONNOH

    KENYA HAS 2 TRIBES, THE HAVES AND THE HAVE NOTS. MR NALO ,YOU ARE QUITE FORTUNATE BECAUSE YOU CAN AFFORD THE BEST TREATMENT AVAILABLE BECAUSE YOU BELONG TO THE FORMER..

    COME TO THINK OF THE HAVE NOTS WHO CANNOT AFFORD TREATMENT AND THEY ARE FORCED TO DIE EARLY BECAUSE OF THE ATTITUDE OF THE HEALTH CARE GIVERS WHICH IS WORSE THAN THE DISEASE.

    THE LIST YOU HAVE PRESENTED TO GIVE GRATITUDE WOULD HAVE BEEN A BLACK LIST OF THE HEALTHWORKERS WHOSE FRUSTRATIONS PUSHES ONE TO AN EARLY DEATH.

    THIS IS WHY WE NEED A NEW POLITICAL DISPENSATION , ONE WHICH WILL FOCUS RESOURCES TOWARDS A  HEALTHY NATION AND NOT TOWARDS POLITICAL PRESERVATION AND GREED.

    I DONOT KNOW HOW CANCER DIAGNOSTIC EQUIPMENT WOULD HAVE BEEN BOUGHT USING THE SHUTTLE DIPLOMACY FUNDS THAT TOOK US TO DESTINATIONS AS DISGRACEFUL AS GADDAFIS TENT.

    OUR PRIORITIES ARE TO SAY THE LEAST BARBARIC.

  • Dadtu

    This is Princes Nasimiyu’s experience from her facebook page. She is currently in london undergoing further treatment. Nasimiyu is that brave 9 yr old girl.  who shared her experice with kenyans on the print and electronic media some time back

    .Princess Rose Nasimiyu
    when
    i was in Kenya, I was diagonised with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma cancer and
    started treament of the same which was 16 cycles of chemotherapy which
    here they call 8cycles. before i left kenya, i had done 10cycles.here i
    did more 2 which was twelve, i then went for scans to see how far the
    desease had gone.when the results came out no illness was ditected and
    medication was stopped, however they noticed
    a node under my armpit which i went for opereation and found out that i
    had another type of cancer not hodgkins and this was Anaplastic Large
    cell lymphoma cancer and for two weeks they had stopped the treatment
    the nodes had spead to my lungs and near the heart,so worring isn’t it?
    Then the Docs here went a head and tasted the blocks of the nodes taken
    in kenya for the first operation. Both the nodes tasted Anaplastic
    cancer which means i was being treated for the wrong illness i had
    anaplastic from the very beggining. now i started afresh treatment in
    January which am will be untill August on weekly basis. It’s been hard
    for me and my mum on top of other things but we are still strong
    together and we are determined to beat this deadly disease. I miss home, hopefully i will come before i finish my treament.I thank God am fine and going to school like any other kid xx

  • Elle Jelani

    The correct spelling is Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

  • Odhiambo Charles

    Wuod Tura, you will be back on your feet soonest in Jesus name…..

  • Rach

    Get well soon Mr. Nalo. I lost 2 uncles in less than a year; both to cancer. My dad is the last surviving brother in that family and since then he has been obsessed with healthy living. He also goes for the full annual check-ups but at Agh Khan and i hope they check him well enough to avoid what happened to NMs dad… My uncles were treated for amoeba, typhoid, ulcers etc and only on their death beds were they diagnosed with cancer… I pray that the hospitals in Kenya improve n that docs recognise that these are peoples lives n they should not do the guessing game on them!!!

  • Macduff

    Best wishes Bwana Obonyo.
    Are you still coming to Nebraska, give me a holla
    Macduff

  • Doc Odotte

    Indeed a wake up call to revamp our healthcare system. Wish you all the best in your fight, we are standing by you and cheering you on as you wage the battle. Get well soon thura

  • ole selema

    its our turn fellow youth to institute an integrity, transparency, justice and reliable leadership in our days. let not nobody despise your youth. baraka.

  • alice wairimu kigondu

    Time for youth to take over leadership has come and we as youth should spread the gospel of peaceful co existence now that we are headed to the general elections. we look forward to serve our counties so as to empower the youth.

  • its tyme for us as youths to bring change that will transform our countries leadership

  • dennis kamunya

    we need to take charge as todays leaders and not tomorrow which never comes.kudos 4 the gud work u r doin.

  • william aruga

    youths ave been given a raw deal since let them shine.

  • levil owino

    am not seeing the online application form plz someone help

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