Musk to start charging for Twitter checkmark: Reports
According to reports, the new owner of the social media giant is planning to launch an $8 subscription service starting next week.
According to media reports, Elon Musk will start charging Twitter for its blue checkmark starting next week. This is according to the billionaire’s carefully-watched plans for the social media giant.
Musk plans to launch his $8 subscription service to users who wish to keep or obtain the checkmark starting Monday, Bloomberg also reported the news, citing internal documents and people with knowledge of the matter.
After completing the $44bn acquisition of Tesla last week, the Tesla CEO has plans to increase revenues and combat spam accounts.
Twitter launched in 2006 and reported a loss of $270 million in the second quarter.
Twitter’s current system allows famous users and accounts that are of public interest to apply for a checkmark to verify their identity without any cost.
The check mark was created to protect accounts from impersonating public figures. It has been viewed by many as a status symbol, and by critics, as a sign of liberal elitism.
Musk’s plan to overhaul would eliminate the need for users to authenticate their identities.
that the changes will be first introduced in the United States, Canada, and Australia. Existing users will have an interim period to either subscribe or lose their check marks.
Musk tweeted a series on Tuesday describing the current verification process for high-profile accounts in a series as “bullsh*t”, and a “lords & peasants” system.
“Power to the people!” Musk tweeted, “Blue for $8/month.”
According to Bloomberg and The Verge, Musk also plans to lay off as many as half the 7,500 employees of his San Francisco-based business.
Musk’s purchase of the platform has been a hot topic in heated debates about free speech, misinformation, and online hatred in the age of social media.
Musk, who is a self-described “free speech absolutist”, criticized Twitter’s moderation policies. He also accused Twitter of favoring left-wing views.
Although critics are concerned that Musk’s ownership could lead to more hate speech, conservatives welcome the takeover to counter Big Tech’s censorship of politically incorrect speech.
Musk, who describes himself as a moderate politician, spoke out in favor of a “common digital square” that allows for diversity while insisting that he doesn’t support a “free-for-all hellscape.”
Musk’s assurances are not enough to convince big brands like Audi, General Motors, General Mills, and General Motors to halt their advertising on the platform while they wait for clarity from its new owner.
Twitter’s advertising revenue accounted for more than 90% of its revenues, and it earned $4.5bn in 2013. Musk stated that he would like to reduce the company’s dependence on advertisers.
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