Blue Tick. Benefits Twitter or Tweeter?
Twitter was launched in 2006 and all was hunky dory until one day it woke up to a lawsuit from Tony La Russa, a famous baseball player of that time. A fake Tony La Russa was tweeting while the original was not even on Twitter platform.
Twitter settled the lawsuit and introduced the blue tick for the (rich and) famous. It soon became a status symbol. The blue tick kind of authenticated or verified that the source has been checked by Twitter and it is what it is. The @realdonaldtrump or @iamsrk and so on.
Another example of the Blue Tick confusion is from @TinaFey. While the American actress had nothing to do with this, people started following this twitter handle thinking it is the real one. Well now they somehow got that handle changed to @NotTinaFey now and sorted out that one.
The whole idea was to get all Twitter users to TRUST the information coming from the blue tick accounts. That’s when more people start believing the information, following that information. And importantly it becomes monetizable.
To increase this base of Twitter users and TRUST, Twitter opened the blue tick accounts and said one can apply for the blue tick. This included brands (some of our brands have blue ticks now), Government Institutions, Famous Personalities and importantly Journalists.
The whole idea behind the Blue Tick is to increase believability of the tweets from these accounts. So, Government, Leaders, Sports Personalities, Journalists, Actors and other famous personalities were awarded blue ticks. It also kind of validated the information, even if it was merely a veil, that the information that is coming has been verified by Twitter. That is, the account has been verified, but not the information. It is yet another matter that, American Author Cormac McCarthy who has never been on Twitter was verified by Twitter just a year ago.
On last count, there are about 425k verified accounts as per @verified and almost 240 million monetizable accounts as per Twitter. Actually, the number should be 425k monetizable accounts. Because if the information is not trustworthy, it is not believable. And if the source is not believable, it cannot be monetized.
So, while Google & Meta monetize their audience, Twitter was monetizing its tweeters popularity by adding a layer of believability.
If this is the case, why will the rich, the famous, journalists, governments and brands want to buy their blue ticks, while Twitter makes money on their tweets?
And Mr. Musk is trying to monetize the monetizer. And to add insult to injury, Twitter is also doing away with its verification process for the blue ticks. So, any Tom, Dick and Harry can get a blue tick by paying just $8 a month.
And $8 is the price to spread lies, hate and generally vilify anything, if we one desires. And the fun has started. Mr. Musk was just impersonated now.
And let the users who believed that the blue tick adds authenticity and trust be damned.