Tag Archives: PZ Myers

Misleading posts in Deepak Chopra’s Twitter feed verge on trolling

Deepak Chopra

Deepak Chopra, photo by Mitchell Aidelbaum licensed under a CC BY-SA 2.0 license.

Susan Gerbic contacted me the other day. She was confused by an unsolicited message she had received from none other than Deepak Chopra on Twitter. To save you the click – it’s just a bare URL in a tweet, no other explanation. Presumably Chopra wants Susan to read that blog post?

More on that later, but I told Susan I’d seen odd behavior before in Chopra’s Twitter feed. He sometimes seems almost obsessed with the idea of getting those who criticize him to read his columns and blog posts. I had made a note to myself to investigate this as part of my bad behavior series. I thought it would be an interesting follow up to my previous post about Deepak Chopra’s employee acting as his sock-puppet on Wikipedia.

It used to be that digging around in old tweets was very difficult, because Twitter’s search function only went back a few weeks. But last year Twitter enhanced search to include years of old tweets. Using Twitter’s advanced search function (which has also been recently enhanced), I dug deeper into Chopra’s Twitter feed to see how often he does things like this.

What emerges is a sad pattern of a man who has almost 2 million followers (and a verified account!) acting as if it is vitally important his followers see that he is debating with certain key atheists on Twitter. He also seems bizarrely obsessed with getting certain people to read his blog. In the process I believe he’s skirting the Twitter rules on spam, and encouraging bad behavior in some of his co-authors as well.

So let’s use that enhanced Twitter search and look a little deeper….

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Twitter reaction to my #TAM2012 speech

I’ve gotten a fantastic reaction to my presentations at The Amazing Meeting 2012 (TAM2012) this year. Part of that reaction took place on Twitter during my talks and in the weeks since.

Twitter has a notoriously short memory, its search only goes a few days back. So comments on a live event can slip into Twitter’s memory hole alarmingly quickly. They’re actually all still there, but just inaccessible unless you know the URLs.

So I thought I would capture the live comments on my TAM2012 Plenary talk: You are the Future of Skepticism on the Internet. They give you an idea of what live-tweeting on a speech is like, and show what the initial reaction to the talk was.

I’ve included both positive and negative comments, as many as I could find.  These are presented in mostly chronological order, though I’ve reordered a few comments when it helps to follow the flow of conversation. And as you’ll see, I pulled out one sub-conversation so it can be read on its own.

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