Elon Musk is a strange strange cat. He finally went through with his $60 billion purchase of the least used Social Media platform of them all, and immediately fired the company’s big-wigs and now appears to be considering a big price rise on the least useful part of the platform.
He may be a genius, I’m never going to question his intelligence, but his current ideas for Twitter are wild beyond belief, and put him out of step with reality by a further few degrees than was already the case.
Twitter Blue is a subscription service that launched a fair while ago and has gained little or no traction. For $4.99 a month you could delay the sending of tweets and change the twitter icon on your phone, among a list of other even less significant features.
This month Twitter Blue introduced EDIT TWEETS which was one of the most requested features on the platform. Worth $4.99 – nope.
Reports today suggest that Twitter is likely if not about to implement new changes to Twitter Blue which would see the price go up to $19.99, and that those with “Blue Tick” verification on the platform would need to be a Twitter Blue subscriber or have their “Blue Tick” removed within 90 days.
As someone who has a “verified” Twitter account, Elon – I don’t care. I worked closely with the Twitter team when they first started coming to Australia – before they even had an office – to help compile lists of journalists in the Technology category to verify over 50 of them to ensure some clear authentic voices existed in the Australian market. But throw all that away now at your peril, because most don’t need it for that anymore.
The purpose of Verification was to show authentic accounts, and differentiate from spam or bot accounts pretending to be someone else.
But given Twitter stopped growing as a platform some years ago, it’s really just somewhere I share thoughts on F1 or Tech, and it’s benefit is far below that of Facebook, Instagram and TikTok – by a long way.
Leaving all that aside, I really do hope Elon doesn’t rush into this, because that Twitter Engineering team could be doing things that are far more beneficial to the social discourse that he so strives for in his quest to be a global “town square”.
Principally, turn the Blue Tick into a PEOPLE verification tool – Heck change it to a Green Tick for that if you want. Not a Brand, Celebrity or Media thing – make it about real people, and leave the Blue tick for celebrities.
Has Twitter verified you ARE who you say you are? Are you using your REAL name somewhere in your Twitter Profile? If so, Green Tick.
Because I for one would use a platform where I can IGNORE ALL OTHERS – and I would use it far more than I use Twitter today.
Free speech is important, around the world, but it shouldn’t come at the expense of others by way of defamation or abuse. So lets authenticate all users that want it, and give them the right to speak.
For those in the media or celebrities wanting a “Blue Tick” or whatever you want to call it for verified subscribers to Twitter Blue – go for you life if you really think that’s worth $20 a month! I see no point when it’s worth that though! Shows how out of touch Elon is if he thinks anyone would!