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Twitter cybersquatting rampant

Posted by Michael Bloch in online world (Wednesday November 11, 2009 )

A survey of Twitter accounts for 100 big brand advertisers has found that few have ownership of the Twitter handles that correspond to the names of their companies or their brands.

According to Adage, among those who have fallen victim to Twitter cybersquatting are General Motors, Comcast, Mastercard and Nestle.

Hyundai, also affected, are so incensed by Twitter’s failure to act that or communicate they are considering legal action.

It’s tough for both parties here – if we were to register our business names on all social networks that popped up; we’d do little else during the day. Twitter could also wind up spending a good deal of time on policing such registrations.

However, Twitter has said they are working with business owners to ensure that they own their trademarks/brand names on Twitter as their terms of service doesn’t allow name-squatting or impersonation.

But, if big names like Hyundai are having trouble getting Twitter’s attention – small business folks may find it even more difficult. So whether you tweet or not, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to register your business name as a username on Twitter. Even if you never make a single post; it will prevent someone else from assuming your identity and perhaps posting less than desirable content.

Also reconsider being active on Twitter if you’re not – I’ve found it a great way to drive traffic with just a couple of minutes work a day. An item I posted last night generated at least 200 Twitter visitors within a few hours – and others more into Twitter than I experience far more traffic than that.

Learn more:

A beginner’s guide to Twitter marketing


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