Twitter has eliminated and denounced the activity of up to 130 false accounts, actually robots, apparently linked to the nationalist Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya and which were used in a coordinated way to massively influence public opinion. Although the party denies the facts and claims to have learned it from the press, the Twitter company has made the relationship public because it has detected malicious activity unmistakably related to specific actors.
According to the information published in El País, Twitter says that most of the accounts were created at the same time (December 12, 2018) and acted jointly, giving wide dissemination to selected tweets by the then Vice-president of the Generalitat, Oriol Junqueras, as well as the deputy Gabriel Rufián, as well as other politicians, all from Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya.
Twitter has unveiled this information in the framework of an internal investigation into attempts to manipulate public opinion, which has revealed similar performances of Russian, Venezuelan and Iranian accounts. It's in this type of manipulation of public opinion that this "external action" of Catalan nationalism has been framed.
It's not the first time that Catalan nationalism uses false accounts on twitter to try to influence public opinion. Two months after the illegal referendum on October 1, Twitter Audit revealed that 32% of the followers of Pilar Rahola and others were actually false.
In fact, Twitter Audit allows us to check the authenticity of the followers of the most popular accounts with ease, and that yields amazing results, because if a normal user does not usually have false followers, political leaders can overcome 30% of false followers. (robots that are nourished by their tweets). However, cases like Oriol Junqueras, which has almost 40% of false followers (check here
), exceed of the norm.