Following the acquisition of Twitter by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, the micro-blogging platform is planning to launch a pay-for-play verification system that will charge verified members $20 (N16,000) for the verification badge.
This means that verified Twitter accounts will have to comply with this new mechanism and pay up for the blue badge, as they will be given a maximum of 90 days to pay or lose their blue check mark.
This new feature for verified accounts will be introduced under Twitter Blue. Twitter Blue, which costs $4.99 monthly is the microblogging platform’s paid monthly subscription which offers users exclusive access to premium features such as the option to edit a tweet, undo a tweet, and read news ad-free.
Reports reveal that Musk has already given engineers at the company a deadline date of November 7 to launch the feature or risk being fired from the company.
Hours before this report was posted, Elon Musk had earlier tweeted “The whole verification process is being revamped right now”, he however did not give much info about the whole process.
Following Twitter’s plan to introduce a verification fee for the badge, some verified users have disclosed that they do not mind losing the badge as paying such an amount ($20) for the badge is unnecessary.
A verified Twitter user Hank Green said, “Hilarious thing is, I’m a current twitter Blue subscriber, but I’ll need to unsubscribe if they make verification conditional to having a Twitter Blue subscription because paying for a checkmark is 100% cringe.”
Currently, it is reported that Twitter makes most of its money from advertising, but these changes and more are part of Musk’s plans to make subscriptions at least “half of the company’s overall revenue.”
After Elon Musk completed his $44bn (£38.1bn) takeover of Twitter, which some described that he overpaid, he has lately been on the lookout for ways to increase the company’s revenue. Musk had earlier disclosed plans to increase Twitter’s annual revenue to a whopping $26.4 billion by 2028.
The Tesla CEO has also told banks that he plans to develop more ways to make money from tweets. For example, he stated that he plans to create a way to monetize tweets that go viral or include important information.
Musk also suggested the idea of charging a fee when third-party websites quote or embed tweets from verified accounts. He brought up the idea of paying influencers to create content for the platform, which is a business model that has proven to be successful for TikTok. The billionaire owner is also said to be interested in the idea of subscription services that the company could offer to increase its revenue.