After various delays, Twitter officially relaunched its Blue subscription on Monday, December 12th. As before, Blue offers up a checkmark that appears next to the name of subscribers, although now there are different colours depending on what type of account you have.
When Twitter’s new owner and dude who got booed at a Chapelle show Elon Musk rolled out the first Twitter Blue revamp earlier this year, it cost $9.99/mo and was only available on iOS. This time around, Musk has changed up the pricing for Blue (likely after realizing Apple was taking a chunk and angrily tweeting about it). The service is now available on the web and iOS with different prices. Update 2022/12/13 at 9:44am ET: The iOS version is now showing up for me.
Twitter’s ‘About Blue‘ page says it will cost $8/mo on the web and $11/mo on iOS in the U.S. For me, Twitter Blue is listed at $10/mo CAD on the web, and if you subscribe through the iOS app it costs $15/mo CAD. Checking the Android app reveals a message that Blue is only available on the web and iOS “for now.”
Beyond the pricing and availability changes, Blue notes that subscribers with a verified phone number will get a checkmark “once approved.” There’s a 90-day delay on new accounts subscribing to Blue, but beyond that, there doesn’t seem to be any other measures in place to prevent abuse of the blue checkmark like what happened the first time the feature rolled out. Twitter’ Blue FAQ page even notes that “accounts that receive the blue checkmark as part of a Twitter Blue subscription will not undergo review to confirm that they meet the active, notable and authentic criteria that was used in the previous [verification] process” (emphasis ours).
Musk also reiterated plans to remove the legacy checkmarks from Twitter accounts, calling the old process to get them “corrupt and nonsensical.” While there were certainly problems with the old system, at least it took the time to establish a baseline of authenticity for verified accounts. I also find the corruption argument funny, given Musk’s plan to prioritize tweets from those who pay for Blue, effectively forcing pay-to-play rules on the whole platform.
Moreover, a Twitter support page spotted by TechCrunch details the new checkmark colours. Blue checkmarks will be for those subscribed to Blue (or legacy verified accounts until Musk gets around to removing those). The support page also notes that Twitter won’t review accounts with the Blue checkmark to make sure they’re authentic.
The new gold checkmark showing up for some people indicates that the account is “an official business account through Twitter Blue for Business.” The page also references grey labels applied to state-affiliated media and government accounts.
However, there isn’t actually a Blue for Business feature available on Twitter yet. As noted by TechCrunch, the gold checkmark is showing up on business accounts that previously had relationships with Twitter and the platform plans to open Blue for Business up to more companies in the future.
Update 2022/12/13 at 9:44am ET: Added details about Twitter Blue on iOS now that it’s showing up on my phone.