Seeing Double: Twitter Removes Network of Duplicate Accounts Cheerleading Mexican Political Allies

On December 2, 2021, Twitter announced that it had suspended a network of 276 accounts with ties to Mexico. Twitter stated that the network suspended contained inauthentic accounts that shared primarily civic content, in support of government initiatives related to public health and political parties. Twitter shared this network with the Stanford Internet Observatory on September 12, 2021. SIO’s analysis found that the network of accounts engaged in some level of coordinated posting, handle switching, and cheerleading for the Mexican president. Many of the accounts showed support for brands and entities under the umbrella of the Mexican conglomerate Grupo Salinas, which is owned by Ricardo Salinas Pliego, an ally of López Obrador. Those accounts trolled some of both Salinas Pliego and López Obrador’s opponents, and defended Grupo Salinas’s justifications for keeping stores open during lockdown. The network activity was concentrated in 2019 and 2020, and did not show clear ties to political candidates or races in Mexico’s 2021 midterm elections in our analysis, although we encourage further exploration.