As the world’s richest person prepares to revamp the social media site, Elon Musk is considering charging Twitter users $20 (£17.30) per month or $240 per year for a blue tick on their account.
According to tech journal Platformer, Tesla CEO Elon Musk is proposing modifications to Twitter’s Blue membership service, including boosting the $4.99 monthly charge to $19.99. Users who have been vetted by the platform and have a blue tick indicating that they are a reliable source will have 90 days to join up for Blue or lose their check mark.
Musk did not respond directly to the article, but he did tweet on Sunday to his more than 110 million followers that “the entire verification procedure is being redesigned right now.”
He also mentioned a Monday morning Twitter survey that asked Twitter users how much they would pay per month for a blue tick: $5, $10, $15, or “wouldn’t pay.” The poll was set up by tech investor Jason Calacanis, a Musk associate who is part of the multibillionaire’s team brought in to help run the business after the $44 billion buyout. Netflix’s basic subscription is $6.99 (£4.99) per month.
Musk’s plans for Twitter since the takeover have mostly been played out via his Twitter account. Musk started a poll on Monday asking users if he should bring back Vine, the video-sharing software regarded as a forerunner to TikTok but shut down by Twitter in 2016.
In an exchange with YouTube personality Mr. Beast, Musk hinted that competing with TikTok might be a motivator for the move, writing, “if you did that and genuinely competed with TikTok that’d be hilarious.”. “What might we do to make it better than TikTok?” Musk said. TikTok has almost 1 billion users, whereas Twitter has 230 million.
Musk and his team appear to be reviewing internal messages received by employees in the run-up to the acquisition, after tweeting an internal communication written by a senior employee in May 2022 on Monday morning.
He has also committed to upholding content regulations and bans on limited accounts until the billionaire’s announced content moderation panel meets.
The Twitter acquisition was completed on October 27, with Musk instantly becoming the company’s new owner and CEO. He also sacked several key executives, including previous CEO Parag Agrawal. The following day, Twitter shares were delisted from the New York Stock Exchange. Musk has since proposed many changes to Twitter, including the formation of a “content moderation council” to handle free speech.
The takeover has been met with mixed reactions, with praise going to Musk’s proposed reforms and vision for the company, but criticism coming from fears of an increase in misinformation, disinformation, harassment, and hate speech on the platform.
Conservatives, right-wingers, libertarians, and Republicans have mainly hailed the purchase, while liberals, left-wingers, progressives, Democrats, and Twitter employees have expressed reservations about Musk’s objectives.
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