(AFP) – Feb 9, 2009
WASHINGTON (AFP) — Micro-blogging service Twitter on Monday suspended an account said to have been set up the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, saying it had been created by an impersonator.
The account -- twitter.com/ohhdl -- was created on Saturday and attracted nearly 20,000 followers in just two days, a phenomenal rate of growth.
"Welcome to the official Twitter page of His Holiness the Dalai Lama -- administered by The Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama," the first message read.
The background for the fake Twitter page included a picture of the Dalai Lama from his official website, dalailama.com, and a quotation from the Tibetan spiritual leader.
Twitter claims more than six million users of its service, which allows users to send short messages known as "tweets" of 140 characters or less.
Last month, the Twitter accounts of US president-elect Barack Obama, singer Britney Spears and other prominent figures were hacked and fake messages sent out in their names.
Launched in August 2006, the micro-blogging service has been embraced by a number of celebrities including Obama, Spears, other artists and athletes including four-time NBA champion Shaquille O'Neal of the Phoenix Suns.
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