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Saturday, December 9, 2023

Why had been these bizarre accounts following a bunch of individuals on Spotify?

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Any individual despatched an odd tip about Spotify to The Verge on Wednesday.

The e-mail, with the topic line “Spotify Hackers,” claimed that “Each English account in America has two new followers, ! lucasrpx and ! vitornovaes.” The tipster adopted up two minutes later to share a screenshot displaying the profile footage from the accounts, which featured characters from the Studio Ghibli film Ponyo. Bizarre stuff.

This appeared fairly innocuous — we doubted they had been hackers — however we needed to examine. It was straightforward to disprove that the accounts adopted “each English account in America”; the accounts weren’t following me. (Although full disclosure that I’ve been an Apple Music person for years.) However the accounts did comply with two different Verge staffers, and a cursory search on X (previously Twitter) confirmed {that a} lot of individuals were wondering about these accounts. (Based mostly on the photographs we’ve seen, it seems “! lucasrpx” generally glided by “! lucas.”)

I requested Spotify about what could be happening. Spokesperson Laura Batey despatched me this imprecise assertion: “Confirming that these accounts have been disabled for violating our phrases. Word that whereas they’re not accessible to the person, they might nonetheless be seen on the platform.” I adopted as much as ask for extra particulars however haven’t obtained a reply.

Precisely who or what “! lucasrpx” and “! vitornovaes” are stays a thriller. If I needed to guess, I feel they’re simply spammers who had been mass-following folks. However they will not be the one different bizarre accounts following folks unexpectedly; one colleague discovered two followers they didn’t know with the “! [username]” development for his or her profiles.

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Are you seeing any followers like this? In that case, I’d be curious to know within the feedback!

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