Twitter CEO Elon Musk has delivered on his promise to bring a paid subscription plan to the social media platform as the billionaire tries to overhaul the platform’s verification system.
In an update to Apple iOS devices, Twitter said users who “sign up now” can receive the blue checkmark next to their name, “just like the celebrities, businesses and politicians you already follow.” .
The change represents the end of Twitter’s current verification system, which was launched in 2009 to prevent impersonations of high profile accounts such as celebrities and politicians.
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Prior to the overhaul, Twitter had about 423,000 verified accounts, many of which were grassroots journalists around the world that the company verified, regardless of how many followers they had.
Twitter users with $7.99 per month blue tick subscriptions will also be able to post longer videos and see their content prioritized in replies, mentions and searches.
The launch comes days after Musk announced the plan, tweeting that “the platform’s current lords and peasants system for who has or doesn’t have a blue tick is bulls —.”
Experts have raised serious concerns about changes to the platform’s verification system which, while flawed, has helped Twitter’s 238 million daily users determine if the accounts they are getting information from are genuine .
The update Twitter made to the iOS version of its app doesn’t mention verification as part of the new “blue check” system.
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The new strategy, Musk said, will give Twitter a revenue stream to reward content creators.
The announcement prompted a fierce backlash, including from horror writer Stephen King, who said “Twitter should pay him” to stay on the app.
In 2021, Twitter unveiled the Twitter Blue subscription program as a separate service, charging $4.99 per month.
Twitter Blue gives users the ability to access ad-free articles from select news publishers, a special tab showing the most popular links on the platform, and the option to change the color of their app icon.
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The Associated Press contributed to this article.