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By Rowena Cole

Is the blue tick still worth it?

Last Updated 6 Dec 2022

If you’re active on social media or if you’ve ever scrolled through Twitter, you will have come across accounts with a ‘blue tick’.  The blue tick or ‘blue checkmark’ is a symbol to indicate that an account’s identity has been verified. 

Elon Musk Silhouette in front of Twitter Logo

Verification is usually reserved for accounts that are most likely to be targeted by copycats, such as celebrities, brands, or influencers. Following the recent Twitter acquisition by Elon Musk, this process has been updated and has left many people wondering if the blue tick is still as credible as it once was.

Not sure what the changes really mean? Don’t worry, we will break this down, but first…

Let’s Go Back…

Twitter was the first platform to start blue tick verification back in 2009, as a result of people creating fake accounts leading to multiple problems. One of the main events that inspired the verification process was when Twitter was sued by St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa when he was impersonated on the social network. 

TechCrunch noted at the time it wasn’t just La Russa who had impersonation problems on the platform but also other celebrities, including Kanye West. The need to verify accounts became essential to reduce untrustworthy accounts on the platform. 

Kanye west on a stair lift

Previously, Twitter used the blue checkmark to indicate active, notable, and authentic accounts of public interest that Twitter had independently verified based on certain requirements.

 

Until Now…

Twitter has opened up the verification process so that a wider number of accounts can gain the blue tick status. There are now two ways in which you can be verified on Twitter:

  • Active and authentic 

This is the original process, being verified independently through Twitter itself by meeting certain criteria.

  • Twitter Blue

This is Twitter’s new subscription service, available for just $7.99 per month. Twitter Blue became available on iOS in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK on 9th November, 2022. As a result of this, anyone can apply for Twitter Blue subscription service, however there are rules in place, such as;  subscribers being unable to change their display name or username after receiving a blue checkmark.

Is This A Good Thing?

The aim of the Twitter Blue subscription service is to ensure that more profiles/ users have been verified on the platform to help reduce fake and untrustworthy accounts. This seems all good and well but it has had mixed reviews since the launch. 

Whilst most users will adhere to the rules that Twitter has put in place on the Twitter Blue subscription, others may create some damage first before having their newly verified account removed. 

There have already been cases where a fake tweet from a ‘verified’ account has caused havoc since the changes in Twitter’s verification process. For example, pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly was affected after a ‘verified’ Twitter account impersonated the company and posted this tweet: “We are excited to announce insulin is free now.” As a result of this ‘fake’ tweet the company’s stock price went down by 2.2 percent as well as giving customers the wrong information.

Insulin Vaccine in front of Twitter logo

It could also be argued that the Twitter Blue subscription is more of a marketing ploy. Businesses/persons with the blue tick/checkmark will receive more privileges such as priority notifications. This will allow everyone on Twitter to see notifications from accounts with the blue tick in a new verified section within Twitter’s Notifications timeline. Meaning that organic tweets from accounts without the ‘verified’ status will be pushed further down the timeline and gaining less exposure. 

The Benefits Of Being Verified

Who doesn’t want a trustmarker? As a consumer it’s comforting knowing that you are following a trusted account. For many the blue tick will still provide the stamp of approval, and whether we realise it or not our bias to follow verified accounts may still be higher than following unverified accounts. 

Other benefits include:

  • Gaining more followers.
  • Building credibility. 
  • Gaining trust.
  • Immediate recognition with authority. 
  • Placing higher in search results so that potential customers can easily find your account. 
  • Showcasing that you’re a real person or brand by sharing valuable, original content and posting frequently (it’s good to note that accounts that are filled with only memes and no photos aren’t likely to get verified). 
  • You can defend yourself against impersonation attempts.

To Sum Up

Creating the new Twitter Blue subscription aims to increase the quality of Twitter accounts and provide a safer network. However, there have been some very public glitches since the launch.

Twitter Blue Tick

Opinions on this new Twitter verification process seem mixed at this point. Some will argue that having the blue tick isn’t as highly regarded as it once was, and increases the chances for scammers to take advantage of this new loophole. Others will think that the positives of having a verified account outweigh the negatives. Verified status still seems to have obvious benefits that most companies/persons want to maximise. In addition, verified status could give companies a competitive advantage to place higher in the newsfeed.

Not sure if your business should get verified on Twitter?
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