Elon Musk announced that the blue verification check mark in front of a user’s name who authenticates the account will be charged $8 per month, sparking outrage and disbelief among some longtime users.
Billionaire new owner of Twitter, Elon Musk, has said his social media platform is “simply the most interesting place on the internet”, amid outrage over his plans to charge a monthly fee for $8 US per month for Twitter blue tick verification.
Musk, the world’s richest person, acquired Twitter in a massive US$44 billion deal on October 27.
Musk announced on Wednesday that the blue verification check mark in front of a user’s name who authenticates the account will be charged $8 per month, sparking outrage and disbelief among some longtime users.
“Twitter is simply the most interesting place on the internet. That’s why you’re reading this tweet right now,” Musk tweeted Wednesday.
Earlier he tweeted: ‘Being attacked from both right and left is a good sign’ and ‘you get what you pay for’.
“Power to the people! Blue for $8 a month,” he tweeted on Tuesday, adding that the price is adjusted by country in proportion to purchasing power parity.
With this price, he said, users will also get priority in replies, mentions and searches, which he says are key to defeating spam/scams, as well as the ability to post lengthy videos and audio, half the ads and a paywall. workaround for publishers wishing to work with the social media company.
Musk, 51, said monthly user payments for the blue tick will also give Twitter a revenue stream to reward content creators.
There will be a secondary tag under the name for someone who is a public figure, which is already the case for politicians, he added.
A blue tick means that a particular account is verified because it is notable in government, news, entertainment, or another designated category.
Twitter introduced the system in 2009 after facing a lawsuit accusing it of not doing enough to prevent imposter accounts.
However, Musk’s decision to charge for blue ticks has not gone down well with many longtime users, including author Stephen King, who has nearly 7 million followers on the platform.
“US$20 a month to keep my blue check? he tweeted on Monday, followed by an expletive. “They should pay me. If instituted, I left like Enron.” Following up later in a response, King wrote, “(i) it’s not the money, it’s the premise of the thing.”
Musk responded to King with his most explicit acknowledgment yet of the proposal to charge for account verification. “(W)e have to pay the bills one way or another!” Twitter can’t rely entirely on advertisers, he said. “How about $8?” Kasturi Shankar, a user with a blue tick whose Twitter bio describes her as an actress, activist, lawyer, writer, dancer, foodie, and “traveller,” wrote, “A way to dilute the blue tick verification. The real important people are going to leave and take with them the users you need to justify the platform. When businesses and media buy blue ticks, they will in turn try to monetize their tweets. Twitter will become a billboard.
Another user named David Rothschild asked, “So the more money you spend, the higher your pitch?”
“The fake populism of billionaires who just want to cut taxes and regulations for the wealthy, while crushing the rights of working people to basic social security and the negotiations needed to be healthy, productive and have a meaningful opportunity is a particularly infuriating type of fake populism,” said the user who has the blue tick handle @DavMicRot.
Another verified user who managed @Rubiu5 asked, “What happens when a random user pays $8 and changes their display name to Elon Musk, using the same profile picture, and starts tweeting like he was you?” Verified ticks exist to let people know they are following the real person, the user pointed out.
Responding to the barrage of criticism, Musk said Twitter speaks to the inner masochist in all of us.
“All complainers, keep complaining, but it will cost $8,” he tweeted.
In a subsequent tweet, Musk shared a link to a popular British skit titled “Argument.”
The well-known skit from the Monty Python comedy troupe sees a character, played by Michael Pali, go berserk after paying for a five-minute argument with John Cleese.
Totally stole the idea of charging for Monty Python’s insults and arguments tbh, Musk wrote.