Musk Comes 'Full Circle' on Twitter Verification

Blue checks will be manually authenticated under new 3-color system
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 25, 2022 11:15 AM CST
Musk: Twitter Checkmarks Will Come in 3 Colors
Musk said the revamped Twitter Blue will be launched Dec. 2.   (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

Just under a month after Elon Musk completed his acquisition of Twitter, he appears to have settled on a verification system. The CEO tweeted Friday that the new system is "tentatively" scheduled to be launched in one week. He said the checkmarks will come in three colors: "Gold check for companies, grey check for government, blue for individuals (celebrity or not) and all verified accounts will be manually authenticated before check activates." He said the manual authentication was "painful, but necessary."

Days after taking control of the company, Musk said he was abolishing the "lords & peasants" system of blue checkmarks for verified high-profile accounts and replacing it with a revamped $8 per month Twitter Blue subscription service in which anybody who paid up could get a checkmark. Chaos ensued, with blue-checked accounts impersonating companies and celebrities including Musk himself. A gray label was added to high-profile accounts, but Musk declared hours later that he had killed it. Musk and Twitter have now come "full circle" by saying manual authentication is the way forward, "which is more or less what Twitter did before Musk came along," writes Stan Schroeder at Mashable.

Under the relaunched system, "All verified individual humans will have same blue check, as boundary of what constitutes 'notable' is otherwise too subjective," Musk tweeted Friday, adding that "deliberate impersonation/deception will result in account suspension." He said a "longer explanation" would follow next week. His tweets were the response to a comment made on his reply to a tweet criticizing his leadership. "Much of a corporations' value lies in their workers—their knowledge, skills, and ideas," tweeted UC Berkeley professor Robert Reich, secretary of labor during Bill Clinton's first term. "When [Musk] fired half of Twitter’s workforce and drove off even more, he wasn't 'cutting costs.' He was actively destroying what he bought." Musk replied: "Interesting ... now pay $8." (Musk is planning an "amnesty" for almost all suspended accounts.)

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