Twitter ‘removes’ 30,000 likes from Corbyn’s viral Branson tweet

Discrepancy spotted by supporter – but spread of and support for Corbyn tweet relentless

A tweet by Jeremy Corbyn challenging Richard Branson to give back money his company took from the NHS in a lawsuit has gone ultra-viral, reaching millions of people with approaching 30,000 retweets and over 125,000 ‘likes’.

Corbyn responded to a comment by Branson that ‘stuff’ ‘really does not bring happiness’ and satisfaction ‘comes from making a positive difference’. His reply asked Branson to return money – an estimated £2 million – obtained when one of Branson’s companies sued the NHS for not awarding it a contract.

The tweet spread rapidly, to a hugely-positive reaction, but sharp-eyed supporters spotted a strange phenomenon during its rise – a sudden disappearance of around 30,000 ‘likes’:

This was viewed as an attempt to reduce the appearance of its popularity:

If so, it was a singularly unsuccessful attempt, as the likes and shares subsequently rocketed to far beyond the pre-‘removal’ levels.

Twitter has been contacted for comment.

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  1. Branson extorts cash from the NHS. Boris Johnson wants to lock Parliament out so they cannot act against him and Socialist Chris Williamson has to resort to crowd funding to support a court case against the ‘Socialist’ Labour Party who refuse to support him!!!

    What sort of country have we become?

    1. Jack T..tell us more regarding this court case?I only know regarding the kangaroo NCC case?….my membership of the Labour party hangs.on the result of the decision on chris Williamson… out all out!

      1. It’s a foregone conclusion Joseph. But Chris of course can always stand as an Independent.

        Oh, and what was it that happened when Chris was reinstated a few weeks ago? Perhaps you could remind me Joseph. Or Jack. Or ANYONE for that matter.

      2. “one out all out”

        I would suggest to anyone who reads this blog that Joseph knows EXACTLY what the outcome of the disciplinary hearing will be AND why, but pretends that he DOESN’T, as with a few other people on here. The reality is that EVEN if the panel were completely impartial, they would be compelled to expel Chris because they know that all hell would break loose if they didn’t, including MORE possible resignations by ‘moderate’ MPs or Peers, letters of condemnation signed by scores of ‘moderate’ MPs and Peers etc, etc, etc.

        You KNOW that THAT is what will happen Joseph, don’t you, or are you going to pretend that you don’t think anything would happen if Chris were to be reinstated?

      3. Allan Howard 31/07/2019 at 4:31 pm ·

        “. The reality is that EVEN if the panel were completely impartial, they would be compelled to expel Chris because they know that all hell would break loose if they didn’t, including MORE possible resignations by ‘moderate’ MPs or Peers, letters of condemnation signed by scores of ‘moderate’ MPs and Peers etc, etc, etc.”

        That is very depressing. The so called Corbyn project and democratising the party are doomed to fail if it doesn’t stand by those who have fought hardest for it. If genuine Corbyn project allied MPs are forced to keep quiet or be thrown under the neoliberal warmongering bus, then what’s the point?

      4. Allan Vaz the gutless wonder committed political suicide and said his opinion was not valid because… Medication?,he’s still
        here and Chris Williamson will be thrown under a bus by defending the Labour party and the activists.The result being that after my struggle to rejoin the Labour party I will be honour bound to resign… and I am not recommending that any one else should follow my example.. I have done my bit for Labour and took a seat on the borough council in Surrey and made an historic win the very first and I am proud of that but once again ashamed and saddened to be forced out by a right wing kangaroo court!… I await the decision?

      5. Yes Maria, but what do you think would happen if they DID stand up for Chris? What happened when he was reinstated a few weeks ago? What happened when the LP stood up for itself and condemned the Panorama program. I mean ALL I’m doing is describing the reality we find ourselves in, and so rather than get depressed about it, put a leaflet together exposing the falsehoods about Ken and Jackie etc – and that it was these fabricated smears that Chris was alluding to – and print off a few hundred copies and put them through peoples doors (and at the end of the leaflet – and I suggest A4 size paper held together with a pinclip if there’s more than one sheet – obviously say to ‘Please copy and circulate to family and friends and work colleagues etc’). To my mind it’s the most obvious thing in the world for LP activists to do, and be doing – ie exposing the lies (instead of criticising Jeremy or ‘the leadership’).

      6. So if you’re not recommending that anyone else leave the LP Joseph, I can’t help but wonder why you said ‘one out all out’.

        And I couldn’t help but notice that you didn’t respond to my question – ie what do you think would happen if Chris WERE reinstated (and especially in view of what happened LAST time).

        Sorry to ask you awkward questions, but why would you – or anyone else for that matter – neglect to answer such a question, albeit a rhetorical question. But it would be good to hear some of you come right out and acknowlege it – ie what would happen if Chris were reinstated. THAT said, you ALL know of course what would happen, don’t you?

        As I keep saying, it’s a no-win situation and the plotters hold all the cards (so get printing!).

      7. I see “the reality” Allan but it is that reality in part because the party didn’t fight back and has been constantly appeasing the detractors in the party never mind outside. I’m speaking as an onlooker and I feel members have been let down and demoralised by continued appeasement of those detractors. Who will be sacrificed next is the question, does it carry on until only Corbyn is left? Then what?
        If a Corbyn led LP did get into Gov you can expect more of the same x 100… then it is too late to deal with those MPs and those with influence in the party who work day and night to subvert what Corbyn stands for…

        I do not believe many in the current PLP will ever be reliably brought onside, many speak out of both sides of their mouths and will always side with power/establishment/lobbyists when push comes to shove. I strongly believe Labour’s ‘broad church’ is far too broad.

      8. Just to say, I am not paid by anyone so not technically a shill. Apart from the implication that I am paid to promote the agenda of someone else that is one of the tamer names I have been called/assigned over the years. Neither do I “work” with others on the comments section…

        I wont be silenced for the bigger picture either… that bigger picture is growing smaller and smaller with every concession to the detractors.

    2. Do you have a link to the crown funding page Chris has set up Jack. Cheers

    3. Oh, I see our little troll is back, and it is of course no coincidence that he posted his comment just minutes after I posted mine. The shills regularly use ridicule to try and undermine what people are saying, but I wonder if Joseph himself will respond.

      1. Of course it wasn’t a coincidence, Mr Hopkins, sir.

        It was a direct fucking response to your comment, you idiot!

      2. Little, troll and shill not intended to ridicule?
        timfrom at least added a touch of humour.

        Allan, you seem to recommend leaving CW to his fate.
        Not making waves.
        To some of us that’s like shopping the resistance to the Gestapo.

      3. See how the shills continually work together. And it serves two purposes of course.

        1. To try and undermine a particular poster (in this case myself)

        2. It creates an acrimonious diversion.

        As for what David said, his analogy is superfluous of course, because no-one is shopping anyone to anyone, and he is of course well aware that Chris will be expelled AND why.

        If any of the posters on here who repeatedly go on about appeasement, and either indirectly or directly criticise or condemn Jeremy for not fighting back were being realistic, they would of course acknowledge that a fire-storm of condemnation would erupt if Chris were reinstated, and MUCH bigger than the last time of course, and more than likely ANOTHER round of resignations.

        Please ask yourself why it is that obviously intelligent posters like David disregard and neglect to acknowlege the reality of the situation. Anyone would think that they are doing their utmost to turn the membership against Jeremy!

      4. Alan Howard…You seem worried over All hell will break loose if Chris Williamson was reinstated and so called moderates will resign?your words not mine Sherlock?Why would we be bothered . Traitors resigning you clown! Keep off the sauce and get to bed you nasty old man…..and stop the name calling we can all play your game?

      5. Some of us just don’t give the Blairite cockroaches the scary monster status you do. Maybe we just have bigger feet.
        You claim leaflets are the answer to our enemies having a virtual monopoly of the MSM.
        I say one person of influence arguing forcefully for us is louder than a hundred thousand leaflets.
        Blair knew that – which is why Murdoch and Thatcher were his first calls – problem is, we need honest people not the likes of them.
        There are influential people trained in logic with virtually free access to the media who might be open to persuasion – people of the stature of Hawking (RIP) or Dawkins, Higgs, Penrose, Berners-Lee for a start – people of science and other academics to whom truth is a way of life.

  2. This kind of thing can happen when you have a huge system running off multiple servers. The servers have to sync their data between them, so temporarily you can get different answers depending on which server you randomly connect to.

    Data sync will be prioritised so that actual content – the text of the messages, will be updated more often than likes. The specific number of likes is not normally that important if it takes a while to be replicated to all servers. Counting like this on a multi-server system is actually a deceptively complicated problem.

    The fact that later, after it was noticed that the count seemed to have gone down, it went back up again to an even higher number is also suggestive of this explanation.

    The alternative, that a US company is specifically altering the number of likes on a British politician based on political bias, is far less likely.

    Occam’s razor applies.

    1. Hey, leave our paranoia alone! What are you? Some kind of right wing populist troll?

      1. Just because you think they’re out to get you doesn’t mean they’re not! LOL

      2. Very true, smartboy.Also true is the lesser known adage : “Just because they’re out to get you doesn’t mean you’re not paranoid’ :-).

        Back to the old Occam cutthroat and 360° scepticism.

        Actually double blinds need to be taken into account – just as the MSM depends on gullability, so playing on conspiracy theory gullibility is a great way of concealing the truth.

        Put the two together, and you have the Leave campaign in a nutshell.

    2. OK, let’s pick this one apart…

      the image (above) implies that more than 3/5 – 53.6/20 tweets were removed so what is your point? That an unfeasably large number of tweets were missed due to “multiple servers”? Despite the fact that it an automated NTP co-ordinated sync can update all servers within seconds?

      I think that in calling on Occam’s Razor (stated as”entities should not be multiplied except through necessity”) – as you do – you deny your own argument. Your idea of treating computers as excessively complex and introducing relatively fleeting windows of failure to slow human cognitive processes multiplies logical steps (entities) beyond the reasonable.

      1. To take your last point first: No, 33.6K likes difference is not a “suspiciously round number”, when Twitter only displays them to 0.1K accuracy at that magnitude.

        And no, at no point did my explanation included “removing votes”. Not were the votes “missed”.

        Accumulating votes (which essentially is what this is) on multiple servers is a non-trivial problem, because there is no master server that holds the total. There can’t be, because Twitter has 100s of millions of users, and they cannot rely on a single server for anything. Twitter has data centres all around the world, with thousands of servers in each one. Each of which could receive votes.

        Now don’t get me wrong. If the number of votes was critical, then you could optimise the system to update as quickly as possible, at the expense of the server doing other things. But as I explained when it’s a number of likes, that really isn’t that important that like totals are correct within minutes.

        And I’m only describing when things are working well there. You also have the issue that servers may go down at any time, as may communications between them or between data centres.

        Seriously, if you’ve never worked with infomation systems with millions of users, and many servers, that have to accumulate numbers in real time, then don’t disregard the complexity. It just means it’s something you don’t know about.

        I’ve worked on an app that does voting with millions of users. I didn’t deal with the server end. But I was told about exactly these complexities by someone from the team that did. Seriously, what’s described in the article sounds very much like expected behaviour.

        No paranoid explanations required.

  3. Yes pigs can fly and Dubya smiling after the busted chad glitch in Florida during the President election campaign in Florida? Remember bush and the phone ☎ call to jeb bush brothe and govener of Florida Ya its all conspiracy theories…..If you say so sunshine?

  4. It certainly COULD be related to the suppressing of Corbyn’s popularity in opinion polls, to undermine confidence in him ahead of a general election.

    Then again, Arthur’s analysis is equally plausible…

  5. Anyone else notice the comment count here on Skwawkbox is often way off?
    I’m The Antigeek so no clue what the reason might be in either circumstance.

  6. Allan……At times you are spot on… this instance you are wrong If I was certain that Chris Williamson was out I would resign,but I don’t want to?…..You should not be so cynical my friend and trust someone sometime and get to bed earlier……you wouldn’t be so grumpy or cynical maybe……disappointed in your response!

    1. Well don’t be. He’s just as divisive with his unbalanced temperament as he is insightful. Needs more sleep certainly. Such people often end up ruining threads like Skwawkbox’s…

      1. Timfrom…..Yes timfrom but somtimes destructive and corrosive temperments like Allans need to be challenged whether they like it or not!.I have seen new posters on here cruelly put down and insulted.We never hear from them again and he even attacked one poster for being NEW…..unbelievable but bullys and grumpy old men have to be stood up to! Allans gone too far with his nasty allegations and should learn a little humility and should go to bed earlier or see a doctor’ for insomnia!

      2. Or get a slap for being a wind-up merchant! Methinks he doth protest too much. He bangs on about shills so much, I’m starting to hear a guilty conscience.

        But the internet is truly the coward’s friend, giving a new lease of life to malignant, narcissistic personality disorder sufferers everywhere!

    2. I can assure you I get a good eight hours sleep regularly Joseph, and I just happen to be a bit of a nightbird, and nothing whatsoever that I say has anything to do with being grumpy of course – and whoever heard of anyone being cynical because of lack of sleep anyway! – and the fact that you spout such bunkum is the reason for my…… let’s say, lack of trust in you.

      Chris will be expelled, of that there is no doubt, and the phonies on twitter are of course trying to drum up anger in advance of his inevitable expulsion.

  7. Allan…. Says he gets plenty of sleep at 2…30 am……and lack of sleep does not effect him?….so basically either you live in a different time zone,post in your sleep,or you’re living on another planet sunshine…….or could it be that your pretend loyalty and cowardly attacks hide a nasty grumpy old man?….which is it.Your contribution to the m

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