Najb's transformation is to twist the facts, cloning or 'bots' to cheat on a Twitter record,
From doctored photos aimed to show greater public support than he may
really command to using clones or 'bots' to cheat on a Twitter record,
it looks like Prime Minister Najib Razak may really be on his last legs
and clinging to straws as the next general election nears and knives are
out to get him from within his own Umno party.
Despite grandiose claims from Information Minister Rais Yatim that 3.6
million tweets were recorded in just one hour on August 31 - as
Malaysians sent in congratulatory National Day messages to Najib's
#Merdeka55 hashtag - there has been deafening silence from Twitter.
If true the 'world record' had been falsified, it will be another huge
blow to Malaysia's already stretched credibility due to a series of
policy and reform flip-flops plus Najib's own media peccadilloes with
several disgraced international 'image' agencies.
Doubtful 'world record' but few are surprised at the 'bold bluff'
Najib's critics, Twitter's snub no longer surprises given the "clear
pattern of lies used by the BN to create a false impression of political
strength, while discriminating against the Opposition and using
intimidating tactics to scare the ordinary folk back into supporting the
"The hypocrisy and double standards are getting out of hand. When Umno
supporters throw shoes at Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim inside a
mosque, no action is taken to arrest or punish the culprits. Yet the
police can falsely use the Sedition Act to arrest teens and youths for
stomping on the picture of the PM," PAS vice president Mahfuz Omar told Malaysia Chronicle.
According to social media research house Politweet, it began tracking
mentions of #Merdeka55 on Twitter from August 28, the moment Rais had
announced Putrajaya’s aim to hit a one million-tweet mark for tweets
sent within an hour from 8.15pm to 9.15pm on August 31.
"To date, Twitter has made no announcement on their blog about
#Merdeka55. There is also no mention of the #Merdeka55 record online by
other tracking websites,” Politweet pointed out in a report.
“Without a third party to verify the data, the 3.6 million tweets figure is doubtful."
the BN's record-beating claim had been immediately questioned by
Malaysian Twitter users, many of whom have accused the organisers of
rigging the contest by using “bots” to generate false publicity.
“Bots doing retweeting 4 thousand times, then u proud of hvg mils of
tweets?” Malaysian Insider reported Twitter user @Amir_Shari as having
written earlier this week. 'Bots' are computer programs designed to send
out automated responses on the service.
Another Twitter user Cyril Dason had tweeted @cyrildason that
“#merdeka55 stats online: 1,500 tweets generated 493,610 impressions,
reaching an audience of 185,482 followers within the past 24 hours”, in
an apparent rebuttal of the world record claim.
The observations by the doubting Malaysian Twitter users were borne out
by Politweet. During the targeted hour, Politweet said it had picked up
an “odd pattern” during the live stream, where “large blocks of
identical tweets were being sent at the same time”.
According to the social media research house, the tweets using the
#Merdeka55 hashtag were “almost entirely” confined to Malaysia, with
only five tweets streaming in from outside the nation — Myanmar,
Switzerland, Britain, Indonesia and Singapore.
“Further investigation revealed that a small group of users were
responsible for a large volume of tweets. These users had similar
characteristics, e.g. account creation date, profile photos, location
and follower/following relationships. All of their duplicate tweets were
sent using Tweetdeck,” Politweet wrote, calling these duplicate tweets
this week, Najib was ridiculed when the government-controlled media
front-paged photos that appeared to have been "photo-shopped" or
doctored to give the impression of a huge and adoring crowd pressing
forward towards him during his Hari Raya open house last month.
National news agency Bernama has denied the accusations but few
Malaysians are convinced given the large number of inexplicable
peculiarities in the photos.
"Najib has been accused of using Bernama to
doctor the Raya picture of 100,000 people going to his open house. Of
course, this will make the Umno warlords even more hopping mad," PKR
vice president Chua Jui Meng had said.
Not only has the Opposition been gaining ground and are now favoured to
win the 13th general election, which Najib has hinted will be in
November, but within Umno there is a growing movement to oust and
replace him with his own deputy Muhyiddin Yassin.
Muhyiddin is believed to have the backing of former premier Mahathir Mohamad.