Elon Musk said in his recent Tweets that only verified accounts will appear in Twitter’s recommendation feed, many think that this is a result of the shakes of the social media platform. Elon Musk has been trying to find ways to encourage more and more people to buy a premium membership. And his most recent strategy involves the ‘For You’ page of Twitter.
Twitter’s For You page is one of the most popular pages on the internet that shows users tweets from people they don’t follow, but that are recommended to them by the social media firm’s algorithm. To date, this has shown accounts from any Twitter users, whether they are verified or not. But Musk announced in a tweet late Monday that, going forward, only verified accounts will show up in the “For You” section of the site.
290,000. That’s roughly how many accounts pay for Twitter Blue as of early February, according to a report by the Information, citing internal company documents. Of these, around 180,000 subscribers were from the U.S. which is less than 0.2% of the platform’s daily active users in the country.
Under the change, Twitter would only recommend tweets from accounts that either pay for Twitter Blue, belong to companies and brands that have a gold verification badge, or are government officials and entities with a gray verification badge.
Last week, Twitter announced it will be getting rid of its “legacy” verification program, and users who were verified under this program—which involved actual verification of a person’s identity—would lose their blue check marks on April 1.
On April 1st, we will begin winding down our legacy verified program and removing legacy verified checkmarks. To keep your blue checkmark on Twitter, individuals can sign up for Twitter Blue here: https://t.co/gzpCcwOpLp
Organizations can sign up for https://t.co/RlN5BbuGA3…
— Twitter Verified (@verified) March 23, 2023
Before Musk’s takeover, Twitter’s verification program was free, and it gave notable accounts—including politicians, companies, celebrities, influencers, journalists, and government entities—a verification badge after authenticating them.
Musk claims the move “is the only realistic way to address advanced AI bot swarms taking over.”
Musk also said that only verified users will be able to vote in polls.
Since buying Twitter last year, Musk has sought to shake up the way the company does verification. Before Musk’s acquisition, Twitter used to verify users with a blue checkmark as a way to identify whether the account matches the person or company it says it is. This process was free and applied to celebrities, journalists, government officials, and organizations.
Musk introduced a subscription service last year called Twitter Blue that allows a user to pay $8 per month to be verified and obtain the blue check mark.
Twitter said last week that it would begin to wind down its “legacy verified program” and remove “legacy verified” check marks on Apr. 1. The company is prompting people with the legacy checkmarks to sign up for the Twitter Blue subscription service.
Musk has been trying to find ways to generate new revenue streams at Twitter, with paid verification being a flagship policy. But the company has reportedly lost a huge amount of value.
Musk told employees last week that Twitter is now valued at $20 billion, according to an email sent to employees and seen by the New York Times. That is down more than 50% from the $44 billion Musk paid for the company last year.
Twitter Blue, on the other hand, limits the badge to users who pay for its $8 per month subscription and only requires a phone number. The change, scheduled to begin on April Fool’s Day, could trigger chaos and enable impersonator accounts to run rampant.