After days of speculation over whether new “Chief Twit” Elon Musk would charge $20 to be verified on Twitter, Musk announced a revised Twitter Blue program via — of course — Twitter. Calling the existing system of verification with blue checkmarks “bullshit,” Musk shared the key details.
A critical aspect is that people who pay for Twitter can increase their visibility and boost platform activity.
What you’ll get for $8 a month:
- Musk claims that prioritization in searches, mentions and replies is crucial to defeating spamming and other forms of fraud.
- You can post audio or video long (Twitter has a limit of 10 minutes).
- Half the number of ads
- And, potentially, a paywall bypass for paid-access websites, if “publishers [are] willing to work with us”
That’s much cheaper than the $20 originally rumored and widely panned as too expensive. It’s a price, frankly, that makes some sense. This is a price that I had in mind:
This announcement has made a major shift in social media behavior. The first time that people who have the financial means can purchase higher visibility and ranking is this announcement. This will allow them to gain more attention and notoriety.
That’s a game-changer.
It’s true, of course, that anyone with money could buy ads, or pay to promote tweets. But this will be a site-wide, pervasive, and all-activity boost to paid users’ visibility and engagement.
It remains to be determined what impact this will have on the system and how it will affect what is seen and engaged with and what becomes viral.
However, there will still be vestiges of an existing blue-checkmark system which highlights those who are verified and have real-world reputation.
“There will be a secondary tag below the name for someone who is a public figure, which is already the case for politicians,” Musk added.