Twitter owner Elon Musk on Friday announced a new color-coded scheme for verifying accounts—a manual process that could strain the company’s shrunken workforce—that comes hot on the heels of an aborted attempt at overhauling verification that flooded the platform with a chaotic stream of imposter accounts.
The Key Facts
Twitter’s new color-coded verification system would tentatively launch on Friday, December 2, Musk tweeted.
Musk announced that Twitter will manually authenticate accounts, in an effort to avoid imposters who appeared after it opened its verification badges up to paid users of Twitter Blue’s subscription service.
Musk stated that the ubiquitous blue checkmark, currently used by verified accounts for verification, would be replaced with a system made up of gold, blue and gray ticks.
Gold ticks will be given to verified company accounts and gray ticks will be handed to “government” accounts.
Blue checks will now be given to “all” verified individuals, celebrity or not, Musk said, explaining that the boundary of what constitutes notable is “otherwise too subjective.”
A “secondary tiny logo” could be added to an individual’s account to show they belong to an organization, Musk added, promising a “longer explanation” on the system next week.
What We Don’t Know
Users will not be able to verify their identity without paying. Musk’s aborted attempt to revamp the verification system earlier this month opened up “verified” status to anyone willing to pay for Twitter’s premium service, Twitter Blue. The service handed over a blue checkmark to anyone paying the $7.99 a month fee and did not confirm the identity of account holders, unleashing a torrent of “verified” accounts impersonating others. Drugmaker Eli Lilly, former President Donald Trump, Pope Francis, NBA star LeBron James, games giant Nintendo and Musk’s own Tesla were among the slew of high profile figures and companies (often convincingly) parodied.
Musk described the implementation of manual verification as a “painful, but necessary” step to tackle impersonation. Given the mass firing and exodus of staffers since Musk took the reins in October, this process is likely to add considerable strain to Twitter’s already pressured workforce.
Here’s What to Watch
ReplyingMusk admitted that it is possible the scheme would not be successful and said so on Twitter. He stated that account suspension can be caused by deliberate impersonation of or deception. Users could also use their organizational affiliations, bio, and followers to identify accounts sharing the same name. Musk said Twitter could show follower counts under people’s names on tweets and allow filtering based on follower amount “if it actually becomes a problem.”
$191.6 billion. That’s the estimated net worth of Elon Musk, according to SME’ real-time tracker. This makes Musk the most wealthy person on Earth. Musk cofounded and led the creation of Tesla Electric Carmaker, SpaceX Rocket Company and Boring Company Tunneling Company.
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