Ever since Oprah gave Twitter a majorly public shout-out in 2009, celebrities have flocked to the site. Some came in, ready to tweet, only to find that half a dozen accounts were already using their name.
Even more surprisingly, Twitter users had been duped, for some time, into believing that these Twitter accounts were real.
While the number of fake accounts increases every day, back in 2009, Twitter came up with an easy way to help users determine which accounts are fake-by assigning a white and blue "verified" checkmark to certain profiles.
Twitter only offers the "verified" badge to Twitter accounts for celebrities and businesses that are most likely to be impersonated, however, so not everyone can get verified, and even celebrities must wait until Twitter reaches out to them directly.
To find your favorite celebrity on Twitter, without risk of following an impersonator, take these easy steps.
How to Find Verified Accounts
1. Type in the name of your favorite celebrity into the search box. As of this writing, it can be found easily at the top right-hand corner of your Twitter homepage. Hit "search".
The results page that Twitter returns is a complete index of everything to do with your celebrity. It contains users, tweets, videos and popular articles referring to the celebrity's name.
2. To refine your search and find the Twitter account of your celebrity, click the "People" link on the left-hand side of the page.
Twitter will return a page of just the people who use the name of your celebrity in their Twitter names.
3. In the "People" directory, scroll through the page and look for a blue and white checkmark. This is the symbol Twitter uses to differentiate real celebrities from fake accounts.
Typically, verified accounts show up first in the list, so it isn't difficult to find real celebrity accounts quickly and easily.
Once you find the profile you're looking for, you'll notice that it looks a little different than yours. Verified accounts have two separate timelines because celebrities often reply to their fans in bulk and it can make it hard to find tweets in a feed full of replies.
So, you can choose to see all of their tweets (including replies) or a feed with no replies.
The second easiest way to find the official account of your favorite celebrity is to look on their website for the branded "follow" button, which usually includes a white bird on a blue background, or a lowercase "t".
More Ways to Find Official Celebrity Twitter Accounts
1. Profile photos: Some celebrities, like Danny Devito, will hold up signs in their Twitter profiles to prove that their account is real. This method dates back to before the days of the "verified" badge, but some celebrities do it to build rapport with their fans.
2. Celebrity lists: Lists of official celebrity Twitter accounts are easy to find on the web. Here are a few resources:
- Actors & Actresses includes more than forty-five-thousand verified accounts of popular actors and actresses, in order of who has the most followers.
- Stars, Actors & Actresses Official Twitter Accounts is a much shorter list, but it's helpfully designed to separate stars by type, whether they are TV stars, movie actors/actresses, talk show hosts, chefs, or animal trainers.
- American Idol stars can be found easily through the @AmericanIdol "lists," where a list of finalists, alumni, winners, judges, hosts and even their staff has been put together.
- 85 Comedians to Follow on Twitter is a great starter-list to check out if you're looking for more ha-has in your feed.
- Top Politicians on Twitter puts together a list of politicians, starting with Barack Obama, who has the most followers, trailed by Hugo Chavez.
- The 20 Funniest Celebrities on Twitter includes celebrities of all genres that are most likely to make you laugh.
3. Word of mouth: Look at whom your favorite celebrity is following. Typically, they only follow real accounts, and they don't follow many people. This makes it an easy list to run through and pick out anyone else you want to follow.
Celebrities can be easily found, discovered and followed on Twitter with the right combination of search skills and web-searching.