Two thirds of real news articles on Twitter are shared by bots, study claims

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Two thirds of tweeted links to popular websites are posted by bot accounts rather than human beings, a new study has claimed, suggesting that Twitter’s engagement problem may be worse than first thought. 

The research, conducted by a US-based think tank Pew Research Center, found that 66pc of news links were shared by fake accounts. Most of the links were shared from sites with non-partisan views or centrist audiences, it found. 

The researchers used a list of 2,315 of the most popular websites and examined 1.2m tweets that included links to those sites during a six-week period in summer 2017.

Stefan Wojcik, a data scientist and researcher at the institute said: “The results illustrate the pervasive…