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4chan Runs Again

Alex Christie

16 April 2009

Ashton Kutcher and the CNN have challenged each other to see who can achieve 1,000,000 followers on their Twitter accounts. Both were perilously close at the time of writing; with CNN having 963,493 and Mr. Kutcher having 948,385. But, like with most challenges on the internet, the nefarious 4chan has a way of toppling the mightiest of contenders.

The members of 4chan have released a script that creates Twitter accounts and follow a specified user en-masse.


Often referred to as the bowels of the internet, due to the vulgarity of many posts on their forums, 4chan has been behind so many online crazes that I would not be surprised if almost every person who has internet access has encountered at least one of these memes.

Using a rather unsavory persona as a “Twitterer”, the 4chan script has managed to get “basementdad”, (who is modeled on Josef Fritzl from Austria) 124,283 followers in less than 12 hours and is adding more at an exponential rate.

This may seem like a far off target of followers to achieve but when you consider that, at the time of writing, “basementdad” is gaining followers at a rate of 12,232 followers every 10 minutes while Ashton Kutcher and CNN have grown by 897 and 448 followers respectively.

At this rate, it is going to take Ashton Kutcher about 10 hours to reach the target while; “basementdad” will make it in 11.5 hours.

Considering that the script is growing exponentially, you can run it more than once and new people keep running it, it could be a very close finish!

This is not the first time that 4chan has influenced the outcome of online polls and rankings. The whole “RickRolling” phenomenon started on 4chan as a joke, this eventually led to him being nominated for an MTV award almost 20 years after the song was released because there was an online poll held for the award.

In a more recent story, the self proclaimed “Internet Superheroes” rallied together to manipulate a Time Magazine online poll regarding the most influential people in the world: by placing the creator of 4chan at number one.

Update: It turns out that the power of celebrity is still massive… Congrats Ashton Kutcher for being the first person to get 1,000,000 followers!



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