The social media network – of which Musk purchased last year for $44 billion – revealed the news on Thursday that starting April 1, it will remove the verified check-mark status of accounts that Twitter had been verified as notable before Musk’s takeover.
Twitter Blue: Changes Coming To Verification Process In April
That is, of course, unless they subscribe to Twitter Blue or the business-oriented Twitter Verified Organizations plan, both of which will soon become the only way to be verified on the platform.
In the U.S., Twitter Blue costs either $8 per month through the website or $11 per month via in-app payments on iOS and Android.
On Thursday, the company also announced that Twitter Blue was now available worldwide.
On April 1st, we will begin winding down our legacy verified program and removing legacy verified checkmarks. To keep your blue checkmark on Twitter, individuals can sign up for Twitter Blue here: https://t.co/gzpCcwOpLp
Organizations can sign up for https://t.co/RlN5BbuGA3…
— Twitter Verified (@verified) March 23, 2023
Twitter To Offer Gold Checkmarks For Brands And Companies, Grey Badges For Government Accounts
Under the newly retooled verification policy, Twitter has recently implemented a gold checkmark for brand and business accounts, as well as a grey checkmark for official government accounts.
Gold or grey checkmark badges will cost $1,000 per month (plus tax) and $50 per month (plus tax) for any additional affiliated accounts, according to the platform.
The social media network first introduced verified accounts back in 2009 – at no charge at the time – in an effort to help users identify accounts for celebrities, companies, politicians and news outlets “of public interest” were in fact genuine and not parody or fake accounts.
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Musk Called Previous Verification Process “Corrupt” Before Opening Up Badges For All Under Twitter Blue
Variety reports that upon his Twitter takeover in Oct. 2022, Musk stated that the platform’s previous system of verification was “corrupt” and went about making changes to it almost immediately after the buyout.
Musk opened up blue check-marks to any paying customer in a move to democratize the status symbol of being verified, but more importantly was a way for him to inject some much-needed cash into the debt-laden company.
In late Jan. 2022, Reuters reported that Twitter made its first interest payment under Elon Musk, using about $12.5 billion of debt.
Elon Musk paid more income tax than anyone ever in the history of Earth for 2021 & will do that again for 2022.
— DogeDesigner (@cb_doge) March 23, 2023
“Far too many corrupt legacy Blue ‘verification’ checkmarks exist, so no choice but to remove legacy Blue in coming months,” Musk tweeted in November.
Imposter, Parody Accounts Made For Initial Roadblocks In Democratizing Verification Process
Prior to Musk’s Twitter Blue policy, the social media network had over 420,000 verified accounts, according to Variety.
Musk claimed responsibility for changing the wording on the description of legacy verified accounts to say that they “may or may not be notable.”
Musk launched Twitter Blue just two weeks after purchasing the network in November 2022.
However, it suspended signups after just two days due to a deluge of users who set up fake and parody accounts that appeared to be “verified” with a blue checkmark.
The following month, Twitter eventually relaunched the service with new measures put in place in an effort to prevent imposter accounts.