Twitter lost nine million users during the third quarter, representing its worst quarterly decline ever.
The social network revealed the drop in its earnings report on Thursday and acknowledged that it had anticipated losing around five million users during the period. Twitter now has 326 million active users.
Twitter was quick to say that its user drop was due in part to the company clamping down on accounts that disseminate spam or use automated bots to try to target legitimate users. Many Twitter users reported over the summer that their follower counts had dropped considerably during one of Twitter’s purges.
Despite the user loss, Twitter actually had a strong quarter, as revenue jumped 29% to $758.1 million. The company was also able to swing to a $789.2 million profit, thanks in large part to a $683 million tax credit. Still, even without the tax credit, its profit of $106.2 million was substantially better than the $21.1 million loss Twitter had during the third quarter of 2017.
Looking ahead, Twitter (TWTR) expects its user base to continue to shrink as it purges more accounts. And luckily for the company, shareholders don’t seem to mind that it’s shedding users: Twitter’s shares are up 15.25% in early trading on Thursday to $31.74.