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Elon Musk announces $8 per month subscription to certify his Twitter account.

New Twitter owner Elon Musk announced Tuesday on the platform the upcoming launch of an $8/month subscription for users who want to certify their account as genuine and less exposed to ads.

The social network has been offering subscription-based features since last year, but the general manager wants a new offering, one that’s more expensive and widespread, and that diversifies revenue streams for the platform.

“The current system of lords and peasants, with those who have the blue tick and those who don’t, is bullshit. Power to the people! Blue for $8 a month,” said the head of Tesla and SpaceX, who bought Twitter on Thursday.

So he’s considering bundling Twitter Blue — a $5/month (CA$6.50 in Canada) subscription for easier reading and editing tools — and allowing eligible accounts to be verified and authenticated.

Currently, only certain profiles can request this blue checkmark authenticity badge, including governments, companies, media, political, cultural or sports figures, etc. They may lose their badge if they don’t follow the platform’s rules.

Additional Benefits

On Friday, Elon Musk asked engineers to work tirelessly to overhaul the system.

He said subscribers would have other benefits: their tweets would be prioritized, they would be able to post longer video and audio messages, and they would be subject to “half the ads.”

Currently, Twitter Blue provides access to free, ad-free articles from hundreds of news sites such as the Los Angeles Times.

So it will be in the new version “for publishers who are ready to work with us,” Elon Musk mentioned, without specifying the details.

The subscription price will be adjusted depending on the country.

“It will also generate revenue for Twitter to reward content creators,” he concluded.

The richest man in the world has repeated since the beginning of the eventful takeover that he launched this operation to strengthen freedom of expression in this “public square” necessary for democracy.

He assured that profitability is not his priority. But Twitter is a 90% ad-based network that has never been very profitable compared to its California neighbors Meta (Facebook, Instagram) and Google (YouTube).

Fears of users and advertisers

And Elon Musk can promise that the Twitter platform won’t become unlivable when he relaxes content moderation rules, some advertisers worry.

On Friday, automaker General Motors announced that it was temporarily removing its ads from Twitter. The World Federation of Advertisers (WFA), for its part, recalled the importance of removing “toxic content” for brands.

Therefore, income diversification seems necessary. Elon Musk initially considered raising the subscription price to $20 per month, according to The Verge.

“Twenty dollars a month to keep my blue badge?” Fuck them, they should pay me instead. If it’s set, I’m out,” best-selling author Stephen King tweeted on Monday.

Elon Musk responded by offering eight dollars a month, but no explicit response from the writer.

The very idea of ​​having to pay to have your account certified has drawn a lot of criticism.

“Calling Twitter users to make more money may be the right strategy, but verification is not the place to pay,” Jasmine Enberg, an analyst at Insider Intelligence, said.

“Certification is supposed to ensure the authenticity of accounts and conversations on the platform, and not a premium tool to improve the experience of users who have access to it,” she added.

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