“Your account is now unlocked” in <1hr!
If your new @Twitter account is locked, file a support request, explain what you did immediately beforehand, and reply to the email confirming your support request.
Hopefully you’ll also get a similarly prompt response.
Full support message resolution:
Your account is now unlocked, and we’re sorry for the inconvenience.
Twitter has automated systems that find and remove automated spam accounts and it looks like your account got caught up in one of these spam groups by mistake. This sometimes happens when an account exhibits automated behavior in violation of the Twitter Rules (https://twitter.com/rules).
Again, we apologize for the inconvenience. Please do not respond to this email as replies will not be monitored.
I appreciate @Twitter’s both prompt response (under an hour is quite reasonable for a service as large as Twitter), and immediate apology.
However I don’t believe the "when an account exhibits automated behavior in violation of the Twitter Rules” excuse at all.
Here is what I did:
* I created the account @PostTypeDisc (for a convenient shorthand and status updates for the @W3C @SocialWebWG Post Type Discovery specification that I’m editing) with a new email address
* I confirmed the account via the email confirmation link
* I changed a few preferences (to reduce ads, emails)
* I edited the profile to add a short bio from the spec abstract, location of "World Wide Web", and URL to the specification
* I followed @W3C
* I followed @SocialWebWG
* Account was automatically locked by Twitter
I did it all from a web browser, using Twitter.com directly. Nothing automated, and none of those actions violate any Twitter Rules. I was setting it up and following a few other accounts before writing the first tweet, which seems like a perfectly reasonable pattern.
I think this incident indicates the presence of bugs in Twitter’s “automated systems” and hopefully they’re looking into it. I’m likely not the only person that “got caught up in one of these spam groups by mistake”, and I’d expect the typical user to just give up at that point and go back to another social media silo rather than take the time to file a support request (with any hope of a positive resolution).
Regardless, both opening and closing the resolution with a direct unconditional apology is good form, and good service design.