No Money, No Blue Tick: Twitter Strips Verification From Users, Why Is It Bad?

After several missed deadlines, Twitter has put its foot down on paid verification.

Tech News
2 min read
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Verified Twitter users who refused to pay up were forced to kiss their blue ticks goodbye on Thursday, 20 April.

What's happening?! The Elon Musk-owned social media platform followed through on its umpteenth deadline designed to make users pay for verification via a subscription service called Twitter Blue.

  • Musk first proposed paid verification for Twitter in October last year.

Verified squad: Besides individual users, who else can boast of having a Twitter handle with a verified badge?

  • Businesses and non-profits with multiple accounts can be verified by subscribing to 'Verified Organizations'.

  • The same goes for government entities and officials.

"Any organization that purchases a subscription to Verified Organizations will receive a gold checkmark and square avatar if they are a business or non-profit, or a grey checkmark and circular avatar if they are a governmental or multilateral organization," according to Twitter Help Centre.

Why it matters: Elon Musk's move to slap a price tag on verification has been criticised primarily due to fears that it would open the floodgates to fake news, scams, and identity theft. It might also mean that Twitter is not in compliance with India's IT Rules, 2021.

As per Rule 4(7), significant social media intermediaries are required to enable users to voluntarily verify their accounts and such users’ accounts must be provided with visible marks of verification.


VIP culture? A handful of celebrities reportedly still have the blue tick, despite them not paying for it.

  • Basketball star Lebron James, renowned author Stephen King, Hollywood actor William Shatner are a few such names who've reportedly been offered a complimentary subscription to Twitter Blue.

  • In March this year, Platformer reported that the platform offers increased visibility to a secret list of VIPs comprising Lebron James, US President Biden, and even Musk himself, among others.

First time around: The initial rollout of paid verification in November 2022 had led to chaos and confusion as it opened the doors to impersonators who created fake profiles of world leaders like Tony Blair and George Bush.

  • A single tweet from a verified Eli Lilly account claiming "insulin is free now" had sent the US-based pharmaceutical company's stock plummeting.

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Topics:  Twitter   Elon Musk   Elon Musk Twitter 

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