Celebrities don’t want to pay Elon for a blue check

April 1st is the dumbest day on the internet, and this year it’s not just because brands are trying to prank you by selling “hot iced coffee.” Starting Saturday, Twitter will begin removing Blue Checks from “Legacy Verified” users if they don’t sign up for a Twitter Blue subscription. This is part of new owner Elon Musk’s grand plan to make Twitter profitable, but this particular scheme has a glaring problem: if someone can get a blue check on $8 a month, the icon won’t be cool anymore (and disinformation, too will multiply). , but Musk doesn’t seem too concerned about that).

Twitter originally rolled out its verification system in 2009 to protect celebrities from identity theft. Someone created an account pretending to be former St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa, but instead of just demanding that the account be deleted, La Russa sued Twitter. And so the three-year-old company introduced his iconic blue checkered badge.

Now the circle closes. Celebrities are just a day away from losing their verification badges and you might think they would be lamenting the loss of this symbol that was literally created to protect them. Unfortunately for Musk, paying for Twitter Blue is expensive, so a few celebrities have spoken out to say they won’t be paying for a blue check.

Earlier this month, musician Ice Spice chimed in: “1M on here is heavy blue check wya :’)”

What she means is that since a scam account can’t compete with her 1.2 million followers, people know she is who she says she is. She’s right, but we know people don’t always click on your profile when they’re not sure if you’re real — they might just think insulin is free now (it’s not).

In those chaotic early days of Twitter’s new verification program — a time when anyone could instantly get a blue tick, change their name, and pose as someone else — basketball superstar LeBron James was one of the first celebrities to pose. On a Twitter Blue verified account, someone impersonating James posted requesting a trade from the Los Angeles Lakers back to the Cleveland Cavaliers. That wasn’t true, but the message got out anyway.

James still doesn’t want to pay for a blue check, he said on Twitter.

James is the highest paid NBA player of all time, earning over $40 million a year. It’s all the funnier that he doesn’t pay.

For some celebrities, it’s not about $8. It’s about the principle. Actor William Shatner tweeted to Musk, “Now you’re telling me I have to pay for something you gave me for free?”

But everyone also knows how uncool they will look if they pay for verification. Michael Thomas, a wide receiver for the NFL’s New Orleans Saints, summed it up best: “No one wants that ragged blue check anymore 😂”

This year’s Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes II, also an extremely well-paid athlete, joked that he couldn’t pay the $8 because he had kids to take care of.

Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Darius Slay made an excellent point (plus he’s on the best team in the NFL, don’t fact-check me, that’s true). If someone tries to impersonate him, angry Philly fans might accidentally tweet their complaints to the wrong person.

Other stars took the time to tell their followers that even if they lose their check, they are who they say they are… but they still don’t want to pay for verification. Monica Lewinsky posted a series of screenshots showing what happens when you search her name on Twitter. There are already many impersonators out there, some with blue check paid.

She added, “In what universe is that fair to people who may face consequences for being impersonated? A lie travels halfway around the world before the truth even gets out the door.”

“Seinfeld” actor Jason Alexander said if he lost his check, he would leave the platform altogether because he feared identity theft.

Even New Order bassist Peter Hook got involved. The 67-year-old Brit strongly reminded his followers that he would never sell anything to fans via DM.

Identity theft is clearly the number one concern among celebrities (…and journalists), but there are other benefits of Twitter Blue beyond the blue tick. According to Musk, the “For You” feed only shows tweets from verified users. Still, we can’t imagine LeBron being too concerned to see his tweets. The guy has 52 million followers.

https://techcrunch.com/2023/03/31/celebrity-blue-check-twitter-verification/ Celebrities don’t want to pay Elon for a blue check

Olly Dawes

Olly Dawes is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Olly Dawes joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: ollydawes@24ssports.com.

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