Twitter removed the legacy blue tick from verified accounts yesterday, on April 20. This comes months after the company's CEO Elon Musk announced the date to press users to sign up for Twitter Blue, its paid subscription service.
Due to the recent development, many celebrities and noted personalities across various domains lost their coveted verification check mark. With the launch of Twitter Blue, only users who are subscribed to it will be able to have a blue checkmark in front of their names along with access to some brand-new features.
However, basketball star LeBron James and author Stephen King still retained their checkmarks despite publicly announcing that they would not sign up for the service. It was later informed by the CEO of the company that he is personally paying for the Twitter Blue subscriptions of some celebrities to keep their checkmark.
This came to light after American author Stephen King took to the microblogging website and said, "My Twitter account says I've subscribed to Twitter Blue. I haven't. My Twitter account says I've given a phone number. I haven't."
Replying to the same, Musk said, "You're welcome namaste."
In a separate tweet, Musk informed, "I'm paying for a few personally." Later, he tweeted, "Just Shatner, LeBron and King," referring to Star Trek star William Shatner, who had last month complained about being forced to pay to keep his blue checkmark
Former US President Donald Trump, Microsoft Co-Founder Bill Gates and reality TV star Kim Kardashian were among those who lost their badges. Several Indian celebrities including Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Alia Bhatt and politicians like CM Yogi Adityanath, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi and cricketers Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma among others have also lost their verified blue ticks from their Twitter accounts.
The company introduced the blue check mark system in 2009 to help users identify that celebrities, politicians, companies and brands, news organisations and other accounts of public interest were genuine and not impostors or parody accounts. The company didn't previously charge for verification.
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