How a user’s joke on 49.3 forced Elisabeth Borne to deactivate her Instagram account

This Sunday, March 19, 2023, a user’s joke referring to the government’s forced passage through the use of 49.3 forced Elisabeth Borne to make a surprising decision: temporarily deactivate her Instagram account.

It all started with a simple tweet. This Sunday, March 19, a user is launching a challenge: send 27,000 people to fictitiously subscribe to the Instagram account of Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne so that its number of subscribers is 49 300either 49.3k.

If this tweet reaches 50 likes, I send 27k fake subscribers to Borne so that it has exactly 49.3k subscribers..


— mlz13 ud83cuddf2ud83cuddfd (@EstChauve) March 19, 2023

A subtle reference to the use of 49.3 by the government to push through its pension reform plan. mlz13nickname of the Internet user, is neither a recognized influencer nor a political opponent, which did not prevent his joke from succeeding a little less than 4 hours after his tweet.

Elisabeth Borne reached 49.3k subscribers in a few hours.
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An account deactivated in stride

Shortly after, around 10 p.m., photojournalist Louis Witter made an astonishing discovery: Élisabeth Borne deactivated her Instagram account after discovering the pot of roses.

Since then, the account has been reactivated but with a small change: it has gone private. This option makes it possible to restrict access to photos and it is no longer possible to subscribe automatically: new subscribers must be validated by hand by the owner of the account.

This Monday, March 20 at the beginning of the afternoonhis number of subscribers has dropped drastically and now stands at only 34 000 thanks to the Prime Minister’s communication teams who no doubt manually deleted the newcomers.

Since last night, the Prime Minister has lost nearly 12,000 subscribers.

Since last night, the Prime Minister has lost nearly 12,000 subscribers.
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So many subscribers all at once?

However, one question remains unanswered: how could mlz13, the Twitter user who initiated the joke, convince so many people to subscribe to Élisabeth Borne? In reality, he probably didn’t have to.

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The answer is simple: he would have bought subscribers. Although the practice is officially banned by the social network, there are an impressive number of sites that offer to buy Instagram followers by the thousands. Numerama had also conducted a survey in November 2021 to show that it was quite possible to buy 10,000 followers on Instagram for the modest sum of $80.

Nevertheless, even though mlz13 resorted to this little subterfuge, his hoax was successful. One thing is certain: he seems determined to do it again very soon.