Science

Twitter: Elon Musk would like to auction certain usernames

Twitter is reportedly considering auctioning usernames to generate new revenue as owner Elon Musk tries to revive the company’s business, two people familiar with the plan said.

Credit: comradeco / 123RF

Last month, Elon Musk announced that his Twitter social network would soon remove the 1.5 billion accounts considered inactive on the platform in an effort to re-open usernames that had not yet been used by Internet users. Now we know a little more about how these nicknames could be passed on to users.

Indeed, the New York Times reports that in December last year, people working at Twitter discussed selling usernames in an auction. The report, which cites unnamed sources familiar with the progress of the talks, says it’s not certain and it’s not clear where the talks are at.

You may have to pay to get your dream username

So far, the easiest way to get your desired Twitter handle is to watch it and take the chance when it becomes available. The task was not an easy one, as if the latter was too much in demand, it’s safe to say that the bot was also tracking the same username to automatically capture it.

So selling usernames can prevent them from being taken over en masse by robots, and that some can get a name of their choice if they really want to. However, the auction could create a big gap between users who can afford to invest in getting their dream name and the humblest users who can’t afford to spend a dime on Twitter.

This idea, however, is rather odd, as it is a reminder that Twitter policy does not allow the buying and selling of usernames. However, despite this rule, people have been able to buy coveted Twitter usernames on the black market for years. So Elon Musk himself could revive the practice if his company decides to sell some of the most coveted usernames to the highest bidder. We’ll probably have to wait a little longer before we know what approach Twitter will take, which is currently facing a massive personal data breach of 235 million users.

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