Okay, so Twitter broke its own verification system by making the blue check — previously a signal that the account had provided information about the owner’s identity — available for purchase. Yesterday, which is about a month ago in Elon Musk time, a solution rolled out: gray check marks indicating that the account was official. By the end of the day, those checks had been reversed.
Do you have all that? Excellent. After much imitation, hoaxing and other brand-unsafe behavior of the newly purchased blue checks, the gray “official” checks are back.
Brands like Coca-Cola, Twitter, Wired, and Ars Technica have the new-old gray checks (but not @Vergethat is, we promise, our real, unlike this cheater account). This morning, Musk, the new owner of Twitter, said there are too many”corrupt legacy Blue ‘authentication’ checks.”
Those “corrupt” checks were, of course, unpaid — unlike the ones that caused chaos by imitating brands like Nintendo, Eli Lilly, and Tesla. A blue check costs $7.99, as part of Twitter Blue, and Musk said it will be the “big leveling” as he got rid of the gray checks yesterday. Twitter Product Leader Esther Crawford (who now bears a Twitter Blue-purchased verified stamp) on her account) said earlier this week that the gray checks would return, with a focus on “government and commercial entities to start with” rather than individuals.