Blue Check Please! Twitter verification now open to the public
Not a twitter celebrity? No problem, twitter can still verify your account. Recently, twitter opened up its’ verification process to the public, so now any one can get a blue check. Previously, twitter only accepted applications from celebrities, public figures, brands and organizations. Seeing a blue verified check means that an account is authentic and tweets posted are coming from a real account owned by an individual or company claiming to own it. The check separates accounts like @Drake from other accounts possibly pretending to be the famous rap star.
Twitter recently created an online application process that allows anyone on the social media platform to apply for account verification.
“We want to make it even easier for people to find creators and influencers on Twitter so it makes sense for us to let people apply for verification,” said Tina Bhatnagar via PRNewsWire, Twitter’s vice president of User Services. “We hope opening up this application process results in more people finding great, high-quality accounts to follow, and for these creators and influencers to connect with a broader audience.”
On Twitter’s support page, an article details how users can apply for a verified account. Prior to submitting a request, applicants should have a verified phone number, email address and other account specifications. After submission, Twitter may reach out to the applicant to get a government verified ID before reviewing verification request.
Given the steps required for verification, the question becomes should regular users go the extra mile in to get Twitter’s blue check?
Twitter accounts with verified status are viewed as more credible and of higher status than non-verified accounts. The public views tweets coming from a verified account as authentic and meant to be posted. This is important since Twitter, unlike other social media platforms, does not require its users to sign up using their real names. Thus, anyone can create an account and sign up with a fake name, pseudonym or other alias that hides their true identity. Due to Twitter’s more relaxed restrictions in creating accounts, many fake accounts can be found on the platform. Some fake accounts masquerade as celebrities or worse, troll other users under a pseudonym to dish out online abuse.
Users who have received the blue check mark on their accounts are provided with stricter privacy tools, along with more filtering tools to weed out spam and hateful tweets by other users on the platform.
Twitter did not openly state that gaining verified status was its way of expanding the number of users who can gain access to the anti-abuse tools of the platform. However, it could very well be an underlying agenda, given the recent return to the spotlight of the issue due to the sexist and racist tweets directed at comedian and Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones.
It’s still unclear if Twitter plans to verify everyday people who fill out the form, or stick with its previous practice of only granting it to public figures and industry users, like journalists. If a critical mass of users do opt for verification — and ultimately use their real name and photos — it could spell the end of the egg avatar, or at the very least could drastically reduce the visibility of anonymous users.
Although anonymity has been a hallmark feature of Twitter since its launch, the vitriolic nature of the user base has forced the company to make hard choices about its commitment to the philosophy. Still, many critics of Twitter’s policies say it still has not done enough. This change could be an opportunity for the company to present a choice to a majority of its users: shape up, or be left behind.
Either way, verified twitter status is always a good look for artists and brands. The added anti-abuse tools and privacy can protect you from online abuse. Career-wise, verified status can open doors to new opportunities and promotions.
To apply for verification, visit support and fill out the form to start the application process