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By: Jennifer Devitt on January 5th, 2011

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You want to follow me, huh? Wait I need to "Validate" you first! New trend?

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I have noticed a disturbing new trend when I follow people, maybe you have seen it?  It goes like this...I find a new and interesting person and/or business to follow, not long after I click the "follow" button I receive a Direct Message of all things from this new person with a link to True Twit Validation . Sometimes the Direct Message contains a personal note with the request, sometimes not. Basically I consider it a spam Direct Message from someone who allows a bot to validate me, to ensure no bots are following them? ARGH!!!

Now, I don't proclaim to be a social media expert or guru, but doesn't this just scream anti-social?? I mean none of the folks I have received this request from have had locked tweets (which is another thing altogether), they are just what at the time, I considered interesting people I would like to learn from or interact with. They don't want bot followers, but they allow a bot to validate potential new followers? Can I just say...Pot meet Kettle!

What gets me is that they are allowed to Direct Message me this "validation" request! The few that I have received this request from do not follow me (which is fine, I never expect follow backs, if I get them I am honored) and technically if I don't play the validation game does that make me a bot whom they will block from following them? So, what gives, why do they earn the right to Direct Message me?

I understand not all of your potential followers are going to be real people, some might be but we have all seen the questionable followers of shall we say "off color" nature? But if someone wants to follow us, don't we allow them the courtesy of viewing the profile ourselves, making the decision ourselves, not having a bot do it? Personally unless you are pornographic or otherwise offensive or a obvious bot, I don't block followers (unless the rare occasion of stalking comes up I guess!)

So tell me, what do you think? Am I wrong to be offended by these validation request? Do you think it's right they get to Direct Message these requests to you but you can't Direct Message them? Why would you want to close yourself off from potential clients or business or social relationships? You don't trust bots to validate your business meetings or business inquires, why would you do it on a social network of all places? You tell me?