Elon Musk’s latest change to Twitter will be to make government accounts gray and corporate accounts gold.
By Philippe Moyer | Published
Good news for anyone who wants to pay Elon Musk $8 for a Twitter tick! The billionaire plans to relaunch his verification system next week, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The paid tick will remain blue, but the ticks identifying governments will turn gray and the business ticks will turn gold.
When Elon Musk launched his Twitter verification system earlier in November, the $8 checkmarks were the same color as the verification checkmarks on all other accounts – which were used to identify official accounts and real people. Twitter’s trust and safety team reportedly warned Musk that the move would lead to scammers and impersonators abusing the new verification system. Musk launched the new system anyway. In a shocking twist, scammers and impersonators have abused the new verification system.
Ever since Elon Musk bought Twitter, he seemed to be dedicated to promoting the blue checkmark as a status symbol. The new paid check mark will remain the same color as verified celebrities and other public figures. Elon Musk said Twitter will manually authenticate newly verified accounts, so everyone knows the blue check mark means a real person paid Elon Musk $8.
Besides the new verification system, the social media company has undergone other massive changes over the past month. Elon Musk fired Twitter executives immediately after buying the company. Then he fired half of Twitter’s workforce. More recently, it announced plans to reinstate suspended accounts shortly after reactivating former President Donald Trump’s suspended account.
These changes come as Elon Musk attempts to monetize Twitter. He previously said that the social media site, which he took on $13 billion in debt to complete his purchase, was losing $4 million every day.
Elon Musk’s changes to Twitter have not come without consequences. According to Media Matters for America, advertisers fled the platform in droves. As of November 21, half of Twitter’s Top 100 Advertisers have stopped advertising on Twitter. These advertisers had paid $750 million to Twitter so far in 2022, or about $2.3 million per day. This means that unless Musk’s changes to the platform this month generated around $6 million in daily savings, the company is still operating at a massive loss.
It’s unclear whether advertisers who fled Elon Musk’s Twitter will stay away from the platform, which has reportedly been busier than ever since Musk took charge. It’s also unclear how popular the new verification system will be, but it must be hugely popular to make up for the company’s reported financial shortfall.
In addition to Twitter’s apparent financial problems, the company is now facing lawsuits from terminated employees claiming the mass layoffs did not comply with California law. Elon Musk was also sued by dismissed Twitter employees in Ghana, leading Twitter to negotiate with employees to offer the legally required severance package.
Time will tell how Elon Musk’s new Twitter verification system will work. It’s certainly possible that its small staff will be able to successfully combat identity theft with its new manual verification system. It’s unlikely, however, that enough people will pay $8 a month to make a dent in the company’s $4 million daily loss – a staggering amount that equates to 15 million paying users.
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