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Elon Musk’s X Sparks Confusion with Gratuitous Blue Checkmarks

Elon Musk’s recent overhaul of X (formerly Twitter) has brought about a fresh wave of bewilderment as the platform appears to be randomly distributing blue checkmarks to select accounts.

Traditionally, these coveted blue checks served as Twitter’s means of verifying high-profile accounts, including celebrities, politicians, and other notable figures. However, since Musk’s $44 billion acquisition last October, the norms have been upended. Now, in a surprising turn of events, numerous users have suddenly found themselves endowed with complimentary blue checkmarks over the past day or two. From obscure, lesser-known accounts to prominent celebrities like Yvette Nicole Brown, these unexpected gifts have elicited both joy and discontent.

“I didn’t pay for this. I would NEVER pay for this,” the actress tweeted pointedly upon discovering her uninvited blue badge had reappeared. Other users even shared tips on how to remove their unearned verification through account settings.

So, what’s the deal? Well, last week Musk announced that accounts with over 2,500 verified followers would receive free Premium perks, including blue checkmarks. Those surpassing 5,000 followers would enjoy the Premium+ tier at no cost.

However, the specifics of this recent policy change remain unclear. For some, the only notification they received was a vague message dubbing them an “influential member of the community.” While a handful of users embraced their unexpected verification, others, like Yvette Nicole Brown, have expressed frustration at being mistakenly associated with paying for the checkmark. This chaos only adds to X’s existing challenges concerning content moderation, misinformation, and an exodus of advertisers.

Initially, X implemented an $8 monthly fee for verification, resulting in numerous A-listers losing their blue checkmarks. This move triggered a flood of complaints and led to impostors applying fake verification badges.

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