Twitter pauses paid verifications after users abuse service to impersonate brands and people

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In this photo illustration, the image of Elon Musk is displayed on a computer screen and the logo of twitter on a mobile phone in Ankara, Turkiye on October 06, 2022.
Muhammed Selim Korkutata | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Twitter appears to have paused its $7.99/month Blue subscription service, which allowed people to pay for a verification check mark, after users were abusing it to impersonate brands and famous people.

Twitter launched the service earlier this week in its iPhone app, allowing users to buy a checkmark that had previously been used to show that an account was verified or official. As of Friday, the iPhone app no longer shows an option to sign up for Twitter Blue.

The quick suspension of the service suggests that, at least currently, CEO Elon Musk’s big plan to generate new revenue from users isn’t working as expected.

The paid subscription service led to a plethora of pranksters creating imposter accounts on Twitter. It left the platform even more ripe for misinformation, and many checkmarks were used to impersonate brands with unflattering messages. That, too, presents a big problem for advertisers, some of which have already paused spending on the platform.

Some users who already paid for the service say their paid-for blue checkmark has disappeared from their account.

A Twitter spokesperson was not immediately available for comment. Musk was not immediately available for comment.

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