Twitter has finally stopped displaying legacy blue ticks as part of its ongoing campaign to encourage users to sign up for Twitter Blue.
A tweet from Twitter Verified announced the removal of legacy verified checkmarks from the website on 20 April. The main way to receive a blue tick now is to sign up for Twitter Blue, which costs £8 per month for those in the UK.
The legacy checkmarks started to vanish towards the end of Thursday. The official Twitter account for the Pope was also among the biggest accounts to lose followers, along with those of cricketer Virat Kohli, former US president Donald Trump and footballer Cristiano Ronaldo.
Last month, Musk said a Twitter update would see millions of verified users lose their blue tick from 1 April, with legacy verified accounts losing their blue badges. Legacy verified accounts were first rolled out when Musk introduced Twitter Blue, a paid-for subscription service.
At the time, some Twitter users speculated it could be an April Fool’s joke, though the rollout was confirmed on Twitter’s Help Centre with a statement that read: “Starting April 1, we’ll be winding down our legacy Verification program and accounts that were verified under the previous criteria (active, notable, and authentic) will not retain a blue checkmark unless they are subscribed to Twitter Blue.”
But the blue verification marks remained in place for many users, despite the threat of change, for nearly another three weeks.
What has changed?
Alongside the removal of the coveted blue ticks, there have been other changes to the way Twitter displays information on its users, and the distinction between Twitter Blue subscribers and legacy verified accounts was abolished on Sunday (2 April).
Users are now informed when clicking the tick that an account is “verified because it’s subscribed to Twitter Blue or is a legacy verified account.”
The change may have been made after users of the Twitter Blue subscription service - which costs £8 a month - reported being mocked on the platform for having paid for an account. Twitter has also reportedly been considering giving subscribers the option to hide their verified badges.
How can I keep my blue tick?
Twitter’s Help Centre says that “accounts that were verified under the previous criteria (active, notable, and authentic) will not retain a blue checkmark unless they are subscribed to Twitter Blue. Subscribers will need to meet our eligibility criteria below to receive or retain the blue checkmark.”
To check if your Twitter account is verified through the legacy programme, simply go to your profile and click on your blue checkmark. If your account is legacy verified, the following disclaimer will appear: “This is a legacy verified account. It may or may not be notable.”
Legacy Twitter users who want to maintain their blue checkmark will have to subscribe to Twitter Blue. Twitter Blue subscriptions are paid on a monthly or annual basis starting at £8 a month.
Twitter Blue subscribers will have to meet certain criteria to receive the blue checkmark. This includes having a complete profile, being an active user and being a secure account.
Following Twitter’s announcement, it was reported that the social media platform would continue to display the verification symbol for 10,000 organisations with the greatest number of followers. The removal of legacy verification could also take a long time, as it may require a lot of manual input from engineers.
Twitter’s workforce has been decimated since Musk took over. Within days of taking ownership of the company, Musk sacked around 3,750 employees, half of the workforce. Hundreds more left just a few weeks later.