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Twitter’s safety chief says it needs to ‘invest more in identity verification’

Updated 3 weeks ago
Published Nov 8th, 2022 6:32PM EST
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Image: Leon Neal/Getty Images

Twitter’s safety chief says the company has more to do for verification than paying $8 per month for Twitter Blue.

The last week has been a bit of a ride for Twitter Blue, which has been going through many changes. Elon Musk, who acquired the company almost two weeks ago, has pitched the idea that Twitter Blue will increase in price from $4 per month to $8 per month. What are you getting for that extra four bucks? The now infamous blue checkmark.

Many have taken ill to the idea that someone could simply pay for the checkmark, which is seen on Twitter as a way to verify identity. Many are worried that people will pay the $8 and successfully impersonate another person who either is already on the platform or someone who is not. Musk and the company appear to believe that $8 per month is enough of a cost to ensure that those paying for the checkmark are, in fact, who they say they are.

Well, to a point. Yoel Roth, Head of Safety & Integrity at Twitter, took to the social media platform today to post a long thread about what the company is going to do to ensure that the new Twitter Blue doesn’t create a flood of impersonated accounts.

Roth says that, in the short term, there will be a “proactive review of Blue Verified accounts that show signs of impersonating another user. When we find them, we’ll suspend them.” In the long term, Roth says that the company needs “to invest more in identity verification as a complement to proof-of-humanness. Paid Verification is a strong (not perfect) signal of humanness, which helps fight bots and spam. But that’s not the same thing as identity verification.”

Due to the risks of impersonation and Twitter’s current inability to tackle the potential issue at scale, the company has made the decision to delay the launch of the new Twitter Blue until after the U.S. midterm elections. Those elections are being held today, so it’s likely that the new version of the service will launch later this week or next.

Joe Wituschek
Joe Wituschek Tech News Contributor

Joe Wituschek is a Tech News Contributor for BGR. With expertise in tech that spans over 10 years, Joe covers the technology industry's breaking news, opinion pieces and reviews.