Kobe Bryant un-followed all his Twitter followers and now has a new system of following users.
On Jan. 4, Bryant announced he had a new “follow system” coming for Twitter. On Jan. 6, he unveiled an intensely thought out system of following users that was spelled out step by step on Instagram.
Accompanying the new system was a picture of a snake swallowing a blue bird. The Black Mamba was about to swallow Twitter whole.
“YOU are in charge of the community,” Bryant started out on his Instagram. “I will pick the first 5 to follow.”
The system starts out simple enough. Bryant follows five users. Then, he asked them to pick his next five followers via direct message. On Twitter, only a user Bryant is following can send him a direct message which will not be visible to the public. He asks each of the original five to send over one user by the “end of the week.”
Those next five will be added, and those privileged few will suggest another five users to follow after another week. Bryant will cap his following at 500.
"Then I will reset and start over again #keepitfresh,” Bryant wrapped up before adding a tiny bit of fine print via hash tags. Bryant suggested that frivolous follow suggestions will be rejected.
On Tuesday morning, Bryant’s follows dropped to zero. Then, the number quietly increased to one.
Who was the first follow? Was it Pau Gasol? Was it Phil Jackson? Was it Vanessa Bryant?
No, Bryant’s first follow was Tolani. With nearly 31,000 tweets and 684 followers as of Tuesday morning, this was not a world famous account or person. However, the last tweet visible on the account likely hints at why Bryant followed the user.
Tolani re-tweeted a link on “how to help the homeless when it gets cold.”
Bryant has championed the fight against homelessness over the past few years, so that may provide insight into why Bryant decided to start with this user. Also, Tolani is a Lakers fan.
Considering the first follow, Bryant is showing he could literally follow anyone, but it probably helps to be a fan of the Lakers.