Elon Musk has started removing the blue check marks from Twitter accounts that were confirmed under the company’s old rules.
Now, a blue check-mark badge on Twitter usually means that the account owner is paying Musk, who is one of the richest people in the world, for the perk.
Musk’s Company Relaunched Twitter Blue
The decision to get rid of Twitter’s old verification method, which had been in place since 2009, could confuse users and make them less likely to trust the site. When Musk’s company relaunched Twitter Blue, which costs $8 per month, it led to a lot of fake accounts that looked real and had blue check marks. One of these fake accounts made fun of Musk’s Tesla before the company added more security.
Musk said Twitter would start unchecking thousands of “legacy” verified accounts on April 20. These were accounts that Twitter had previously thought were “active, notable, and real” unless the user subscribed to Twitter Blue.
Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Cristiano Ronaldo, Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian, Selena Gomez, Bill Gates, Justin Timberlake, Shakira, Jennifer Lopez, Oprah Winfrey, and Beyoncé are among the most-followed names on Twitter who have lost their legacy verification status. Donald Trump also lost his verified status on Thursday. Musk brought him back after Twitter blocked him after the attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Trump hasn’t sent any more tweets since then.
At the time of press, though, the accounts of Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Britney Spears, Ellen DeGeneres, Miley Cyrus, LeBron James, and Tim Cook were still confirmed. On Thursday afternoon, the text on these accounts changed to say, “This account is verified because they are subscribed to Twitter Blue and have verified their phone number.” (Before, they said, “This account is verified because it’s subscribed to Twitter Blue or is a legacy verified account,” a phrase the company started using earlier this month.)
But in some cases, it seemed like that wasn’t true. Stephen King, who still has a blue check mark, wrote, “My Twitter account says I’m subscribed to Twitter Blue. I haven’t. My Twitter page says that I gave a phone number. I haven’t.” LeBron James has said that he wouldn’t pay for Twitter Blue. You can check the tweet below:
Barack Obama has 132 million Twitter followers. His account still has a blue checkmark and a description confirming it: “because it’s an affiliate of @TheObamaOffice on Twitter.” Musk’s Twitter page also says that he is “an affiliate of @Twitter on Twitter.” Musk recently passed Obama as the most followed person on the social network. He now has more than 135 million fans.
After closing the $44 billion deal for Twitter in November, Musk promised to get rid of the old blue-check mark method. The multibillionaire said the company’s old verification strategy was “corrupt and nonsensical.”
Musk said last month, in response to William Shatner’s complaint about Twitter’s decision to make users pay for verified status, “There shouldn’t be a different standard for celebrities” when it comes to verified status. Musk once told King, who also didn’t want to pay for a blue check mark, “We need to pay the bills somehow!”
Before Musk made a change that let anyone get a blue check mark, more than 420,000 Twitter accounts were confirmed. The original goal of Twitter’s identification program was to ensure that well-known users were who they said they were so that fakes wouldn’t fool people. You must read Elon Musk and Sergey Brin’s alleged affair has destroyed their friendship!
Twitter has also started a program for companies and organizations. Gold verification badges cost $1,000 per month. But the company is said to be waiving the fees for its 500 biggest advertising clients and the 10,000 most-followed brands, companies, and groups that have already been verified. Variety’s Twitter account is one of the 10,000.
Individual user accounts that are part of a verified organization have a blue check mark and an icon that shows what organization they are part of. Musk took the verified badge off the main account of the New York Times earlier this month after the news organization said in public that it wouldn’t pay to be confirmed on Twitter.