Twitter is preparing to delete 1.5 billion inactive accounts to free up dormant handles, or user names, on the platform, owner Elon Musk said Thursday.
Musk said the deletions would free up the “name space” of dormant accounts, adding that the accounts to be deleted were “obvious” because they had “no tweets” and “no log in for years.”
Some Twitter users have complained that inactive accounts have unusual and desirable handles that were snared in Twitter’s early days.
In the second quarter of 2022, Twitter counted 237.8 million of its users as “monetizable daily active users,” a measure that suggests they’re active on the platform and are being shown advertisements.
Musk has previously promised to remove inactive accounts from Twitter. In November, he said accounts that had been inactive for 15 years would be purged. It’s unclear at this point how long an account can be inactive before it’s tagged for deletion. In October, Musk hinted that accounts that had been dormant for more than a year might also be at risk.
Representatives for Twitter did not immediately respond to requests for comment, made outside normal working hours according to Business Insider.
Tweeps react to Musk’s statement
Reactions have trailed Musk’s decision to reduce the number of dormant accounts on the platform since then.
While applauding the decision, one user seemed to critique him for failing to reinstate suspended accounts that he had pledged to do once he took over the platform. Some expressed their delight and used the opportunity to recommend further action that might be beneficial for the CEO to take next.
Since his takeover of the company in October, Musk has made several changes to the platform, while also restoring many accounts earlier suspended by Twitter for breaking its rules, including that of former U.S. President Donald Trump.
He went one step further by announcing an amnesty for all suspended accounts in response to a poll in which the action was backed by more than 70% of respondents. He claims that the amnesty is contingent upon the fact that the account in question did not break the law or indulge in flagrant spam.
Twitter usage appears to have risen in the weeks following Musk’s takeover in the first weekend of November, Twitter saw its most daily active users ever, according to data from Apptopia, seen by Insider.