Dead Celebs Get Blue Checkmark In Latest Twitter Update
It’s safe to say that Elon Musk’s plan to revamp Twitter checkmarks isn’t going great. April 20 marked the day that “legacy verification”, checkmarks held by prominent figures, would be removed. If someone wanted to retain their checkmark, they would have to pay the $8 fee for Twitter Blue.
According to reports, only around 30 previously verified accounts paid for Twitter Blue after losing their checkmark. Furthermore, that figure itself could be inflated as Musk claimed he was paying for several checkmarks himself. After Musk consulted his wise council (read: looking at replies from Twitter Blue subscribers), he instituted a few changes. Twitter brand partners, such as the MLB, were given a form of a legacy checkmark. Additionally, any account with over 1 million followers was also given a checkmark. However, that has led to a new problem for Musk
Kobe Bryant, Anthony Bourdain, Other Late Figures Get Checkmarks
As part of the update that gave checkmarks to accounts with more than 1 million followers, the accounts of deceased individuals were also given checkmarks. Screenshots were shown of the accounts of Kobe Bryant, Chadwick Boseman, Norm McDonald, and Anthony Bourdain. On the surface, verifying the accounts of deceased individuals is a good idea. It prevents fraud and the desecration of their memory. Impersonation has been a major problem throughout the Twitter Blue process and was made worse with so many accounts choosing not to buy Twitter Blue. However, people have taken issue with the way deceased individuals’ accounts were handled in regard to gaining a checkmark.
Clicking on the checkmark of a Twitter Blue account reveals a pop-up that reads “This account is verified because they are subscribed to Twitter Blue and verified their phone number.” The problem, for many people, is that this is the same text used on the accounts of deceased individuals. At best, it’s an oversight that reads in poor taste when implemented. However, at worse, it’s the implication that Twitter has put its own stamp on the accounts of people who can’t object. Overall, it speaks to the glib and rash way Musk has led Twitter. The social media platform is now one that reactively responds to problems, rather than proactively working to avoid them.