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Fake Twitter account for new pope draws big following

A reader looks first editiVatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano after electiPope Francis 266th pontiff Roman Catholic Church St. Peter's Square Vatican

A reader looks at the first edition of the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano after the election of Pope Francis, the 266th pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church, in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Wednesday, March 13, 2013. Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina was elected pope. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

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A Twitter account that looked like it could be the new pope’s — @JMBergoglio — was flooded with followers, drawing more than 137,000. But it was clearly a fake, with one tweet saying he’d be loved more than Santa Claus.

There is an official pope account: @Pontifex. Pope Benedict XVI joined in December under that handle, but it went quiet after his retirement announcement.

Shortly after the new pope appeared, the account tweeted “HABEMUS PAPAM FRANCISCUM.” (“We have a Pope Francis.”)



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