What should businesses do about Twitter’s new checkmark policy?
Twitter has started to remove blue checkmarks from users who have elected not to pay for the verification indicator.
Twitter verification for individuals currently costs $8/month (or $11/month though iPhones). Twitter also started offering a discounted $84/year subscription this week.
Official organizations, such as the White House, will continue to be verified with a grey checkmark.
Companies and businesses can pay $1,000/month for verification and receive a gold checkmark; an additional $50/month will verify their affiliate or employee account. Twitter does not verify blue or gold accounts to ensure they are who they say they are, as was the case with the previous blue check system.
And Twitter now appears to require that advertisers will also have to pay for verification. But an email from Twitter published by TechCrunch seems to suggest that if the advertiser is already paying at least $1,000/month in advertising, they would be granted a gold checkmark.
“Business accounts spending in excess of $1000 per month already have gold checks or will soon, and they’ll continue to enjoy access to advertising without interruption at this time.”
Some users, including many news organizations, have vowed not to pay for accreditation, arguing that it no longer signals authority if any user can purchase a checkmark. After the New York Times announced that it would not pay for verification, Twitter removed its blue check.
Some companies, however, appear to have paid for the gold checkmark, including Samsung, Nike, Adobe, and the NFL. But these gold checks may have simply been granted to these companies because they are already spending at least $1,000/month on Twitter for advertising.
Effectively, Twitter seems to be attempting to steer high-profile users—whether individuals or companies—toward paying for a checkmark. Some companies apparently believe there is benefit to be gained by paying for a checkmark, even though another user can pose as that company by paying for the same level checkmark.
Businesses that rely on Twitter as a key social media channel have four options:
- Pay $1,000/month for verification, with the understanding that this may not prevent imposters from posing as them by paying for their own gold checkmark.
- Advertise paying at least $1,000/month and gain a gold checkmark that way.
- Decline to pay and continue to be active on Twitter hoping Twitter users will rely on other indicators—like number of followers and history on Twitter—to validate their identity. But this still introduces the risk of imposters posing as the company by paying for a checkmark.
- Stop engaging in Twitter completely, as NPR and CBC did earlier this month and make clear on other communication and social media channels that you are no longer publishing content or updates on Twitter. (Note that NPR and the CBC stopped using Twitter for reasons not related to the blue checkmarks.)
Read my previous post about Meta and Twitter verification.Contact Us