WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Twitter may soon charge users with “verified” badges after Elon Musk’s takeover.
- Sources said Twitter plans to increase its optional $4.99-a-month premium subscription called Twitter Blue to $19.99 a month.
- Musk, a self-declared anti-advertisement, may launch the new Twitter Blue subscription to generate revenue on the social platform.
Following Elon Musk’s $44 billion deal to buy Twitter, several outlets reported the self-declared anti-advertising “Chief Twit” may soon launch a new method to generate revenue on the social platform by making users pay for their verification badges.
Sources familiar with the matter told Platformer, a newsletter created by Casey Newton, a former editor of The Verge, that Twitter executives spent the weekend discussing a possible change to the social platform where users would have to pay to subscribe to Twitter Blue or lose their badges.
Twitter Blue, a $4.99 monthly subscription, launched last year as the platform’s premium offering, giving users access to new features like customizable app icons, the ability to undo or bookmark tweets, and a “reader mode” to more easily view long threads of posts. A verification-tier subscription may cost as much as $19.99 per month, The Verge reported.
Currently only available in the US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, Twitter Blue’s launch has struggled with niche appeal and limited features — but linking verification to the subscription fee could bolster its popularity. Should Twitter require payment for its verified status, it would be the first major American social media app to do so, as most platforms offer the feature for free.
The current verification process, which Musk has previously described as “like if Kafka had a Magic 8-Ball,” has long been decried as being an “elitist” status, with narrow eligibility requirements sometimes considered biased against average users. Tying verification to the paid subscription model would establish clearer criteria for getting a badge, as well as generate additional revenue for the social media platform.
Though the move has not been finalized, sources told Platformer, Musk has in the past posted about how he hates advertising, and in his takeover pitch to investors pledged to cut the platform’s reliance on ad revenue and increase the average revenue per user.
“There’s literally no amount of money I would ever pay to be verified on twitter,” producer Michael Schur, known online as Ken Tremendous, tweeted. “Not if it were one goddamn American cent payable over 999 years.”
Source: New York Post